I have two friends. Four footed ones. I also have permission to give them one dog biscuit a day. (I’m limited because they’re limitless and I tend to be obsessive compulsive.) I find their approach to this little exercise fascinating. Let’s take Toby, the golden retriever. Toby is a self-assured extrovert, albeit on the lazy side. When he wants his treat, and he often forgets he’s back for seconds, he slugs me in the back of the knees with whatever is in his mouth. And he’s always carrying something: a stuffed toy, a slipper, an old shoe, or quite recently, someone’s wrapped Christmas gift. Womp!!! My knees buckle. Thanks, Toby. Message received. I stop what I’m doing and head for the dog treat cupboard. He awaits: expectant, grateful, and unabashed.
Then we have Tank, a polite, soft-spoken, border collie. I sense someone staring. When I finally locate the source, there’s Tank, ears down, one eye on me, the other looking another direction. Experience to the contrary, he’s overcome with shyness. Suspended above his head is an imaginary bubble that reads, “Geez, I’m sorry. Is this a bad time? I apologize but I just can’t stop thinking about that biscuit. No hurry, in fact, if you’re busy, let’s just skip it.” We stroll to the dog treat cupboard.
I stop to think about my approach to God. Am I a Toby, a Tank, or a bit of both? As I’m sometimes the keeper of the dog cookie jar, God is at all times the keeper of blessings. I suspect He doesn’t tire of hearing from me, whether I’m demanding, mistrustful, or get it just right. He sees through His lens who I am, how I am, where I’ve been and where I’m going. God is not capricious. His love is everlasting, and generosity unencumbered by our negative imaginings.
Psalm 10:17 You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and listen to their cry.