Once when presented with a request for healing, Jesus asked, "Do you believe?" The petitioner then cried out, "Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief!"
So much of my life has been filled with this struggle. Lord, I know you'll provide. Help me to last until the tide turns. I waited ten years for a new asthma medication - one that would allow me to go months, even years without an asthma attack. Lord, give me my next breath, and let me see a healthier tomorrow. With asthma, fibromyalgia, arthritis, and neuralgia, I waited years. Lord, give me one more day without pain. Help me to live each day with hope.
Too many years have meant a battle with my health. I hate every pill I take, every single time. Yet, each time that there is a problem with one of my presciptions being filled, the anxiety has been almost unbearable. Lord, help me to believe that this, too, is directed by your hand. I get angry when my medications are messed with. You too? Yeah, you know what I mean.
We have three little dogs: Happy Dog, my little dachshund; Peanut, my youngest daughter's pomeranian; and our newest, Pixel, my older daughter's miniature schnauzer. If I am sitting on the bed, as I am now, they are all around me. Happy Dog on my left, sucking all the heat out of my left hip; Pixel, pushed up against Happy; and Peanut at my feet, because the other dogs have cooties. Each has its own personality. Each has its own personal need. They depend on me. And when they have a request, they sit up and stare expectant holes through me, knowing that I will understand and respond.
If only I had faith in God, with the same measure as they have faith in me. But we humans don't offer faith very easily. We want proof. These little dogs don't need proof. They know. I realize that there is a lesson here. Only when my faith becomes trust, can I be as good as my dogs.
Little dogs are very unique creatures. They are smarter, more observant, and more demanding. They are filled with love, intuitiveness, and courage that is only surpassed by their sense of humor. Each can make your soul spill over with fierce affection, and when they ignore you (as they will if you displease them), it can just about break your heart. Little dogs are also the only animal that Jesus speaks about, in Scripture, with fond affection. How appropos that my Savior should let me know how precious they are. Little dogs.
I don't know how I lived my life, without these little dogs. Each has something precious to give to me. Happy, with his undying devotion, after eleven years, has left his mark on my soul. Peanut, whose tremendous, watchful spirit, has taught me much about loyalty, single-mindedness, and the power of waiting. Pixel, just a little over six months in our family, has taught me the boundless energy of puppyhood, and with her blue-green, human-like eyes, she has given me a look into my own soul.
Each pup gives everything, 100%, always. Can I do that? Can I love with their passion? Can I trust with such capacity. I don't know. But I can try. Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.
Wednesday, September 03, 2008