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Man’s Best Friend

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, "Two people are better than one, because they get more done by working together. If one falls down, the other can help him up. But it is bad for the person who is alone and falls, because no one is there to help."

How many of my readers have or had a dog sometime in their life? When growing up we had a couple of dogs and cats. I was never a fan of dogs but loved the family cat. Partly because of a couple of bad experiences I never cared much for dogs, especially the big dogs and still don't. In fact it wasn't until my youngest was six that we got our first dog and that was only because we rescued him. He was already a few years old and a Chihuahua/ Pug mix. At first, I tolerated him, he was a sweet puppy, but he soon won me over. In fact, when we had to put him down six years later my heart was sad. Knowing I'd miss him my dear hubby convinced me to buy a new puppy. She is also a Chihuahua purebred and I fell in love with her. Six years later she is definitely, my dog, and my fur baby. A few years ago, we added an addition to our home, my son’s rescue, a 3-month-old Chihuahua/ Jack Russell and he won all our hearts within a months’ time. So much for not liking dogs.

Let me ask you, is your dog playful? Of course, they are, and as puppies they are a bundle of playfulness. What do you play together? Maybe their favorite, fetch (or for my first dog, he liked to keep away). Maybe they like to run with you, play tug of war, or for some like my nieces and nephew, their dog plays hide and seek.

Dogs don't just play, they love their treats and will learn many tricks, to get those treats. Sit, lay down, shake, play dead, speak. When I say ‘up’ with my 2 they get up on their hind legs. Having a dog can be fun and there are so many types and breeds, and they all do things differently beyond the basics. Some help the blind; some are fire dogs or police dogs. Some are made to pull sleds, some are made to hunt, some herders. Some are made for search and rescue and won't give up until they find the person they are searching for.

God made all dogs unique, with their own little quirks, but they all have a few things in common. They are faithful, loyal, protective, and show empathy. It's sad to say, even when an owner is abusive to their dog, their dog is still loyal. I'm always glad when the dog can escape those homes but even more glad most homes treat their dogs well.

Many may ask why a dog is like this but there are some simple answers. You sustain them and shelter them from danger or elements of the seasons, they consider you family, and they have formed a friendship with you. They know your voice and feel safe with you and that's why they get excited to see you and miss you when you're gone. They have formed a bond and trust in you. Oh, they can be mischievous, disobey at times, stop listening (hmm, sounds like our children), but they are always there for you.

You may be wondering where I'm going with this biblically, so I'll share my thoughts. Jesus tells a lesson about sheep in John and adds a couple illustrations. He talks about how sheep trust their shepherd and know his voice over any other. He tells a story of a lost sheep and how the shepherd searched for the one out of the100 that was lost, because the little lamb mattered and was part of his family.

Jesus goes on to say He is our Shepherd and like the sheep know and trust their shepherd we can have the same relationship with Him. Yet, to obtain this relationship we need to spend quality time with Him- John 10, Luke 15.

Now, back to man's best friend, our dogs. I suppose we could use our dogs in the same lessons as the sheep because they are a more part of our society, just as the sheep were back then.

Faithfulness and loyalty goes both ways between us and Jesus. He is faithful in keeping His promises to us, He is faithful in protecting us, and Jesus shows empathy for us. He comforts us when we are upset, and He rejoices with us when we are happy. When we understand all Jesus is and what He has done for us, it becomes easy to be a loyal friend to Him and show trust in Him as our Savior and Friend.

What I also love about Jesus our Shepherd, our Best Friend is that, like a search and rescue dog or the shepherd and his lost sheep. Jesus will never give up on us. If we get lost or turn onto the wrong path, He will keep reaching out to us until we find our way home again.

Again, I see a two-way street with Jesus. Jesus is faithful to us and has our backs because, to Him, we are family. We are loyal because we know Jesus and He sustains us. We know that all that we have is because He provides for our needs. We love Jesus and Jesus loves us because together we have built a friendship.

When I heard a devotion on dogs and how they are man's best friend and the uniqueness in which God created them this blog began to formulate in my mind. I believe God provided dogs for man for several reasons. One being that they are an earthly comfort we can have, and because of their loyalty and faithfulness we get a little glimpse of how Jesus is with us. A dog's earthly love will never fail and God's heavenly love will never fail us either.

If you own a dog, give them extra cuddles, and thank God for bringing you together. You need them as much as they need you.

You were made for friendship with God. God does not just want us to know about him; he wants us to know him — and to experience his friendship. Jonathan Edwards urges us to “Let it be [our] first love to enter into an everlasting friendship with Christ that never shall be broken” One of the best ways to help people discover and deepen a relationship with Jesus Christ is through a Bible reading. Let's continue our study with Titus 3:1-7.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog and if you'd like take a few more minutes to look around or click on my other links, God bless.

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