Last night I stopped at Petco to get my little Dante a collar and leash. We went for a long walk and I swear he has stopped giving me the stink eye. The sidewalks are still covered with ice and snow, so walking a little manically excited dog is a real trick!
If you are wondering why I needed to buy a collar and leash, I will explain. My son and wife had the most disorganized move, it took a week, it was a nightmare. The night I took the dog, my daughter in law was crying because she just left the house she came to as a young bride, where she brought her two children when they were born, etc. I asked about the leash and collar and no one knew where they were. So I left with the little dog under my arm, understanding that I would need to purchase whatever I needed for him. It took almost a week for me to get the leash and I feel kind of bad about that. It was super fun to walk with him last night. I still can’t get over that I am suddenly the dog caregiver – after 61 years of dog fear. God is amazing.
And that is the perfect illustration of how God works in my life. I didn’t decide in September of 2012 to “work on” my fear of dogs. I did what was in front of me – I allowed my daughter to move into my house with her 98 lb. bulldog because she had no where else to go. I was terrified. There were nights I locked myself in my bedroom if my daughter wasn’t at home – I was that afraid. But I was a little bit willing, and sometimes that is all it takes. I started to see what a character that dog was. I saw that he was exuberant with my daughter, but gentle as a lamb with me. He knew. He followed me all over the house. He sat at my feet when I sat. He cried when I left the house. He put his big head on my leg when I would watch TV. I began to love him.
This is exactly the way the most profound changes have happened in my life. I cannot “make” them. God makes them. I have to be willing, and probably do a little bit of footwork, but I am not in charge. When I am in charge, I wreak havoc almost everywhere I go.
Here’s another one: I got to go back to my old office yesterday afternoon. My ex-boss heard my voice and opened her door and said “Mary?!” I came to her office to talk with her. She started crying. She has just had a baby and is pretty emotional. She said when she saw me she said “I can talk to Mary! She will understand! She will tell me it is OK to think it is hard to have a baby and work!” That’s all true of course. And I felt like crying too. It would have been so easy to hate her, but God had other plans for us.
I am so grateful.