Last summer, our family added a beautiful Siberian Husky to our fold. She was supposed to help with fitness and satisfy the children’s lifelong desire for a puppy. There are a lot of lessons to be learned from a dog and we have the next fifteen years or so to keep learning them… sigh.
Last night, Mia and I went for a short walk around the neighbourhood. She had her nose to the ground and was sniffing every square inch she could reach. She was so excited to discover everything around her. You’ve seen the dogs with their heads out the car window and their lips and cheeks are flapping? She was woofeling like this as we walked. She didn’t want to miss anything. She was snorting it all in so fast, she looked like a dog with her head out the window.
Here’s the thing about huskies… they like to run. They run a lot. They run fast. They run oblivious to everything around them. So, here’s this husky woofeling (I know, not a word, but it just sounds like what she was doing) along at 1000 km/hour with me stuggling to keep up. Imagine her with her front paws planted and her back legs winding up like the Roadrunner before she leaps into motion. So, full speed ahead and every now and then, there’s a bump in the road. This dog, though, is so fixed on smelling and running that she simply doesn’t notice what’s coming and how hard that rock, garbage can, skateboard, curb or lamp post are going to hit when she runs SMACK right into them.
I was amazed at how obvious all of these hazards were and I was very careful to ensure I wasn’t the one running into them, over and over again. Mia, on the other hand, just didn’t seem to care. It didn’t matter how much it hurt, she just kept plowing forward.
How often, in our lives, are we like Mia? Full steam ahead, with no thought of the harm right before us? So intent on what is important to us, that we fail to look around and consider if the way we are going is truly what is best for us.
In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.
On our walk, the only thing that Mia was acknowledging was the scent of EVERY.SINGLE.DOG.WHO.HAD.GONE.BEFORE.
She had no care or concern for anything that wasn’t satisfying her ‘right now’ desires.
1 Corinthians 16:13
Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
Watchful for the neighbourhood feline mongrel who will scratch out your eyes.
Standing firm against the desire to chase the mailman’s truck until you are utterly and hopelessly lost.
Act like men. Be responsible to protect your family.
Be strong against the temptation of the “pleasant” odours eminating from that compost bin.
The lessons learned from the life of a dog. My interpretation of the above verse for Mia is a bit tongue in cheek, but with a little bit of imagination, I think you can see what I’m getting at with this.
1 Peter 5:8 AMPC
Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the Devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour.
Today’s world offers so many distractions; so many opportunities to wander away from what is true, honourable, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent or praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8). Seeking out God’s will for our lives and committing to living in a way that honours Him is hard – but it is possible.
Knowing God, reading His Word, studying His desire for your life will help you know better and better how to discern what is in front of you and how to respond to it.
For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
So, the next time you are out, walking in the world, be careful to not run through the piles left by those who went ahead of you. Lift your head before your run into the compost bin and take care to consider where you may end up if you decide to throw caution to the wind and chase the mailman.
And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.