I received a delightful lesson yesterday from my puppy. Daisy is a pure bred Bichon Frisé and full of love and playfulness. Yesterday I had a very full day of teaching and Greg was off removing Christmas lights off houses far and wide. Every once in a while before the heavy part of my teaching began I was able to take little breaks from preparing – and go play with Daisy with all her toys. We played tug-a-war for a few minutes, I chased her with the Swiffer (her personal favorite thing to do as she gets all excited and jumps, runs and barks) and squeaked all the squeaky toys making a lot of noise for her. After a time she tired of all these things and found the bully stick in the picture above and proceeded to chew on it – quite forgetting all about me, or so it seemed to me. I waited until she was fully occupied and then tried to sneak out of the room and back into my office. Immediately upon my rising from the recliner in the family room – she was ON ALERT and fully abandoned what she was doing and rose to follow me.
This was such a curious thing to me. Especially as she seemed to be ignoring me. But clearly SHE knew I was still there. And she still needed an audience and full approval from me.
I experimented. I brought her bully stick into my office. I set it on the mat in the picture. Nothing. I sat in my office chair and told her, “get your chew stick”. The result of that conversation is the picture above. “What chew stick?”
It was a great lesson for me. It was me that she wanted all along. And as long as I am with her in the same room paying undivided attention to her – she will play with them. But she will take me over the toys any day. The toys always come in second.
I think that God must feel like that with us. He allows us to be preoccupied and distracted. But at the end of the day – He just wants us. No toys and other time-wasters. Just pure devotional and heart-felt recognition. Peace and comfort from just being together. He wants to be first.
When was the last time that I gave that kind of un-distracted kind of attention to my maker, Saviour, brother and friend? He deserves my full attention and more. Clearly I am too busy if I do not have time each day to bask in His presence.
Help me Lord to stay focused on what is the most important. Giving you first place in my schedule. Every day. With my full attention. Help me to listen and learn. Respond and act clearly. Seeing the most important. Change my heart. Make my heart break with what breaks yours. Keep me in tune. Amen
I am used to unusual noises in our home – especially at night. We live in an older home and it likes to POP and CRACK at the most inconvenient times – like when I’m all alone. When we first moved in – almost 10 years ago, I was downstairs in my office – and the wind blew a door shut upstairs. I was SURE there was someone in our house! It sounded creepy like footsteps above me! And going to sleep was difficult at first. But over time I have become accustom to it. When we have guests here – often they will hear something above their heads and then look at us quizzically, and then ask, “are you sure there is no one home”? We will then nod and look at each other with knowing looks (we could really have fun with people if we chose to) and say, “it’s just our old creaky house – it likes to settle.
It is also not unusual for Greg to be gone until the wee hours of morning. He is a contractor in his “other” job, moonlighting for a company called “Northwood Construction” and they are contracted out to many Starbucks stores in the greater Seattle area. So his job includes, and is not limited to: window washing after hours, high dusting, pressure washing and light maintenance. Last night it was another late one. He has become an expert at slipping in very quietly – that is until we got a puppy. Dogs have an uncanny way of smelling and hearing you before you arrive – and our puppy is always looking for someone to come and see her and is listening intently – especially for Dad to come home after working.
So Greg can not exactly slip in unnoticed anymore. Daisy will jump off the bed, and I will hear her running down the hall, clickety click – down the stairs and then to the back door wagging her tail madly and waiting for that magic moment when Greg opens the door. Last night was no exception. But Greg was very quiet and soon I drifted back to sleep. The next thing I remember was hearing a very loud SQUEAK from one of Daisy’s toys and wondered to myself, “why is she playing with her toys in the middle of the night?” and then I heard a very LOUD CRASH – which had me sitting straight up in bed yelling, “Greg? Is that you? What’s going ON?” This was accompanied by Greg laughing out loud and saying, “well – first I tried to turn out the light down here, I stepped on this blasted squeaky toy and then in the dark, I knocked over the coffee table!” We had a good laugh as I accused him of playing with Daisy’s toys and telling him I was sure it had been her!
It’s the little comedies in life that give an extra sparkle to relationships and have us looking at ourselves and others with humor – as we all try to take ourselves a little less seriously. And folks, if you can laugh at things even in the middle of the night – then I would say that you have passed the test and have found the little things are some of the most important things, after all.
Here’s wishing you and yours a little more comedy and a little less tragedy as you discover laughter and the true medicine it is 🙂