Tale of a Twice-Washed Dog

Perrin

4-2-17

Happy April! I hope you’re all enjoying spring. One of our two blueberry bushes has leaves, the baby creeping phlox is blooming, and we have a new dog. Or maybe he has us. The big brown eyes struck again in the form of a stray, so now we have Perrin. That’s him in the picture, and this week’s post is about him. Isn’t he a cutie?

He has been at the house for about a week and a half, and last weekend we decided we would keep him. Naturally there have been some times of adjusting, but so far mostly so good. One of the inaugural acts was to give him a bath. Thankfully he doesn’t mind too terribly.

Then, Friday night about ten, he needed to go out. Naturally it was raining. He was quite stubborn about doing his business, but that’s another story. He is also quite stubborn about the leash, and he doesn’t know basic commands yet. So when it was time to go back inside, he ended up splashing through the accumulated water in the trash can lid which had fallen off and turned upside down.

Let me tell you, the germaphobe in me went wild. The only thing that saved me was that it was our trash can lid. No matter that it was late and I was on my way to bed. The dog must be clean. I wasn’t about to have all manner of vile contaminant tracked through the house. So straight into the bath he went for the second time in less than a week.

While contemplating our new little dog who smells like ocean breeze, I thought of a Bible verse.

But it has happened to them according to the true proverb: “A dog returns to his own vomit,” and, “a sow, having washed, to her wallowing in the mire. – 2 Peter 2:22

Only in our case, it was a dog which got dirty again. I was frustrated because I put in the effort to get the dog clean once, and then the process had to be repeated. If he’d been obedient while we were walking outside, it wouldn’t have happened. I had to clean him right back up because he wasn’t.

All that Perrin’s dirt cost me was a little time, soap, and water. What does ours cost God? “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) Imagine the love of a father willing to sacrifice his son to help people who didn’t even care about either of them. That’s what God did.

It doesn’t stop there. We aren’t perfect, and God knew we wouldn’t be. I John 1:7 says, “But if we walk in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.” This was written to Christians. John says that if we are walking in the light, or being faithful to God, that Jesus’ blood continues to keep us clean. Becoming a Christian doesn’t mean we stop sinning, and Jesus’ sacrifice isn’t only good one time. It washes us all the time.

I was aggravated because the dog needed another bath, and disappointed in his behavior. In reality, though, he doesn’t understand that misbehaving costs me time, effort, and emotional strain. As people, we do know that. Let’s make sure we treat God with the respect He deserves.

Because I care about the dog, I didn’t tell him to go find another home. How much more does God care about us than I do about Perrin, who I’ve just met? Think about Matthew 10:31. “Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” God is willing to clean us over and over and over. Because He loves us. I’m still trying to comprehend that love, but for now, knowing it is enough.

May the Lord bless and keep you,

Heather

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