“because He first loved us”
1 John 4:19
So, we just celebrated our one-year anniversary with our dog. She’s a wonderful sweet girl, full of personality, and she’s crazy about us. It’s funny how she loves each of us differently. She knows I’m not gonna play tug of war with her, so she never brings that toy to me. Why my girl first wakes up, Calypso will come in and lie down next to her on the bed ~ but with her back two legs on the ground. Very odd position. But they snuggle together a little, and it helps wake my girl out of that sleepy place. With my son, however, she dashes into his room and flings her upper body on him, often slapping him in his sleepy face. Then she licks him repeatedly until he responds.
She loves us all, though. She will sit with us, sleep on our beds (if we’d allow her) and she greets each of us individually when we all come home. She will run to one of us, then run to each other person, but then back again to…. HIM.
I’m really not sure why my husband is the one she loves the most. He’s not the one that feeds her most of the time. He does play ball with her the most, but the kids play with her, too. I suppose he gives her more treats than the rest of us do. He rewards her for going outside to do her business. I maintain that we stopped giving our kids incentive once they were potty-trained; why do we still do it for the dog? So that could be why she loves him the most. Or maybe it’s just that she sees him as her Protector. Taller, stronger, deeper voice…. who knows what a dog is looking for in a Provider.
So although I can’t tell you why, it’s obvious that her love for him is strong. It is loyalty. It is adoration. When he’s sitting in the living room watching TV or working, she is at his feet, or sitting up tall on the floor next to the sofa. And whatever room he is in, she is nearby. Generally within ten feet or so. And if he gets up, she jumps to her feet, ready to assist him if he should happen to need someone to, say, follow him…. If he goes outside, she either sits at the nearest door, alert and waiting; or she runs anxiously from one door to another.
But really, I don’t think it’s important why she is devoted to him. He protects her; he provides for her; he rules over her; he loves her. And that’s all she needs to know.
And that’s all we need to know, too. We have a heavenly Father who is deserving of our devotion.
He is our Protector. “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. He will drive out your enemies before you, saying, ‘Destroy them!'” ~ Deuteronomy 33:27
He is our Provider. “He provided redemption for his people; he ordained his covenant forever – holy and awesome is His name.” ~ Psalm 111:9
He rules over the whole earth. “He rules the world in righteousness and judges the peoples with equity.” ~ Psalm 9:8
He loves us. “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” ~ 1 John 3:1
Are you devoted to Him? Do you see Him as your Protector and your Provider? Do you sit at His feet, adoring Him and listening to Him?
Lesson from my dog: Love Him ~ because He loved me first. Amen.