Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The Best Walks

My daughter has idolized her Old English Sheepdog.  Daizy was her best friend and a loving trusted companion for the past twelve years.  We knew however that this day would come, the day when she would be forced to give the vet the do not resuscitate order.  She is devastated.  In anticipation of this day my wife and I had purchased a sympathy card which said, “The best walks in life are always too short.”  It had a picture of a dog that looked much like Daizy walking down the path with her master.

God never wastes pain.  It is in some of our most difficult circumstances that we learn some of life’s most important lessons.  In this instance I have three takeaways.

First, no one or no thing must ever be more important to us than God.  He is the one indestructible, all powerful, Rock of Gibraltar who will never leave us or forsake us.  No one should ever bring us more comfort, more peace or a greater sense of security than our Lord.  He is the one we must run to when we are hurting so badly that we think the pain will never subside.  In part because no human will ever understand our individual pain as much as our Creator, the One who knew us before we were born.

The second takeaway serves as a reminder of how self-centered we are.  When my first wife died I did not grieve very much.  To some I may have appeared to be in denial.  The fact is that she suffered much of her life with bi-polar illness and schizophrenia.  I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that she was in a far, far better place.  She went home to be with the Lord, a first class permanent upgrade.  The point is that I weathered that storm by thinking of her gain and not my loss.  My daughter’s sheepdog was blind, deaf and had numerous medical problems the last three months of her life.  My daughter’s grief appears to be more focused on her loss than Daisy’s gain.  You see I, like John Piper and Randy Alcorn, believe that our pets will be among the first to greet us when we are called home.

My last takeaway was captured by the sentiment in the greeting card.  Many of us fail to appreciate the “best walks” in life.  We are quick to criticize our spouse when we should consider what an incredible gift God has given us.  We need to get over our petty differences and to get over ourselves.  Much of our dissatisfaction with life is because things don’t go according to our plan, when its His plan that counts.


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