My family adopted a 1-year-old dog last fall. All we told the shelter staff is that we have an active household, with energetic kids, and most days, neighbor kids gleefully running in and out of our house. We wanted a nice, kid-friendly, family dog.
We went home with “Lucy,” a cute mid-size Australian Cattle mix. Lucy turned out to give the energetic children in my life a run for their money. She certainly knew how to relax but when she wanted to play, not only was it frequent, it became obvious to all.
As weeks turned into months, we figured out when it was best to take her for walks, what games to play with her outside, what dog parks she could visit and lastly, how often she needed doggie daycare. Fast-forward a year, she heads to her favorite play place, Fydoland, to ‘play with her friends’ about twice a week.
School started last week for my children and therefore our schedules have been a tad busier than the summertime. Lucy was accustomed to kids being home all day, with plenty of activity in the house. Now, she accompanies the kids downstairs to eat before school and sadly heads to her crate as kids leave for school. I returned home from school drop off, and Lucy was calmly hanging out near my feet, knowing it was going to be a boring day for her, while I worked from my desk all day until school lets out.
However, what she didn’t know was that she was heading to play with her friends that afternoon! I love to tell Lucy when she is heading to play with her friends because her entire body wiggles and moves with complete glee. Our entire family circles around, when home, to watch her react when we tell her that she is going in the car to “play with her friends.” And this day, I really wanted to tell her so she could look forward to something. But here is the thing about Lucy; she gets so excited to climb into the car to play with friends at Fydoland that we can not tell her until the minute before we must leave. And though she was looking a little bored and sad, lying at my feet, she was just two hours away from having the afternoon of her dreams. She may have felt overlooked in the moment, but I knew better. As I watched her sleeping at my feet, I realized: this is exactly how God handles our lives.
He knows what is ahead of us. Lucy, like us, lives in the present moment and therefore it can be difficult to know what is around the corner. At times, we sit and worry, become frustrated that something did not work out as we desire. And it is difficult to see past the present moment. But what if God uses everything for good? What if God knows that we must go through the present challenge to make His plan for us fruitful?
Much like, years ago, when to calm a fever, parents were directed to place a child in an ice bath. At the present moment, the child believes they are being hurt. They just don’t understand why their parent would put them through something so uncomfortable. Yet the parent knows by quelling the fever, the child will be better off in the long run. We must trust, day in and day out, that no matter what challenge we are currently sitting with, God uses it for good and the betterment of our selves. We just must trust.
We did not get that job? That relationship that did not work out? God knows that the perfect job opportunity, positive relationship, or healthy turnaround is right around the corner and just not ready for you yet, for reasons only he knows.
Lucy is learning to trust that I know that she needs exercise and play time throughout the day. I continue to learn that God knows what I need, too and I must always continue to trust Him, even when things don’t seem to make sense to me in that moment.
Copyright 2017 Meg Bucaro