Sunday, November 14, 2010


We are fortunate to have our backyard completely fenced in, so all I have to do is open the door to let our dog, Toby out. He has full reign of the yard, and if I forget about him for awhile, I don't have to worry if he has wandered off or not.
Our back yard is surrounded by many oak trees where an enormous amount of squirrels like to make their homes. Due to that fact, our back yard is a playground for the squirrels where often times you will find them digging, climbing and scampering along the top of the fence. Toby, on the other hand doesn't find their behavior amusing, but rather annoying and challenging. Many days, you will find Toby wimpering and crying at the back door as he longingly waits for me to open the door so that he can chase and hopefully catch one of these hairy creatures. Luckily the squirrels always seem to outrun and outsmart our beloved Toby, but the challenge is always set before him and he never throws in the towel.
One day as I passed the window of the french doors, Toby caught my attention. There at the foot of our crepe myrtle tree, sat Toby. Staring intently up into the tree, he sat motionless as if waiting for a show to begin. I stopped for a moment to assess the situation, when I realized that he was waiting.....waiting for the squirrel to come down out of that tree! For nine long years, Toby has been chasing the same squirrels and only one time, that I'm aware of, has he even come close to catching one. But that doesn't deter, frustrate, or discourage him. He never gives up! He chases those squirrels with the same passion and enthusiasm EVERY time the back door opens and at times, even sits under a tree and waits on them.
It was at that moment that God spoke a word of truth into my spirit. How many times do I seek God for an answer or direction or simply just His presence and get discouraged when I don't see or feel the results that I want? When that happens I usually give up, throw in the towel and move on thinking that God doesn't want to talk to me, sit with me or move on my behalf. I usually lose my enthusiasm and passion and chalk it up to some sin I must have in my life or some inadequacy that I must possess. From the life of a dog, God showed me that I must push through and show some patience and expectation. I must not give up so quickly, but rather sit and wait patiently for the Lord. In an age of microwave, drive-thru Christianity, we have lost our ability to wait on the Lord. We expect to set the timer, push the button, hit the start key, and expect God to show up. As if we are the ones in control, waiting for the jeanie from our magic bottle to appear and grant our three wishes. What arrogance! WE are the created ones, serving an Omniscient, All-knowing God of the Universe. WE need to wait on Him, not vice-versa. When we humble ourselves, come down off our high horse, bow in His presence without our own agenda, it is THEN that He shows up and not one minute sooner!
Who knew that my dog would teach me such a valuable spiritual lesson?

They that WAIT upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint, they shall mount up with wings as eagles.
Isaiah 40:31