“In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe.” (Heb 1:1-2 NIV)
The six golden retriever puppies had been living in my kitchen for a week. I was happy with the arrangement. They were under a cabinet, out of the direct line of traffic, out of the direct sunshine, on a non-carpeted floor . . . What better place for them to be?
There was only one problem: I didn’t ask the mother dog HER opinion on the subject!
Her birthing spot of choice was outside under the bushes that line our deck. She only gave birth in the kitchen because I refused to let her out, and a week later, she still hadn’t completely resigned herself to the arrangement. Every time she went outside, she would immediately run to the bushes and stay as long as I let her. Needless to say, I began going out with her to keep her out of the bushes!
This morning she disappeared again, but instead of going under the bushes, she went into the guest room in my basement. I didn’t know what she was up to, but when I called her, she came, and I didn’t think anything more about it.
Later on that same day, she became restless. She refused to stay with the pups, she didn’t want to eat or drink or go outside, all she wanted to do was be under my feet. Every time I looked down, she would be staring at me, pleading with her eyes. I didn’t understand and I tried to ignore her. You can’t ignore a 65 pound dog for long however, especially when she is constantly underfoot, and after about 15 minutes of stumbling over my dog, it finally dawned on me that she was trying to tell me something. “What is it, girl?” I asked.
Her ears cocked forward and her tail began to wag, then she began to trot in the direction of the basement door. She kept looking back over her shoulder every few steps to make sure I was following, and if I stopped, she would come back and stare at me, her ears cocked and her tail wagging, until I again began to walk towards her. When I finally stood in front of the closed door, she sat down and stared at it, her tail wagging, until I opened it. Then she started down the stairs, again checking regularly to make sure that I was following her. She led me straight into the guest room and began digging up the throw rug on the floor. When she looked up at me, her eyes sparkled and her tail wagged, as if to say, “This is it!”
I was still a little puzzled. “What do you want down here in the basement?” I asked.
She nosed her underside and wagged her tail harder.
I shook my head. Could it be . . . ? “Do you want me to bring your puppies down here?” I asked.
She licked my hand and wagged her tail even harder.
What else could I do? I carried her puppies one at a time to the guest room! She curled up with them and was happy for the rest of the day.
In reflecting on this later, I was quite impressed by the effort my dog put into getting me to understand what she wanted to tell me. Prior to last Sunday, I would have said that my dog NEVER speaks to me, but I now realize this isn’t true. The truth is, I simply don’t put much time and effort into listening, and as a result, I haven’t learned how to understand her attempts at communication!
How many times have you said, “I wish God would speak to me!” or “I need a word from the Lord, but He’s being silent!” Or even, “God NEVER speaks to me!”
When we can’t hear God’s voice, it usually isn’t because He’s not speaking; it’s usually because we aren’t listening! It’s because we’re not familiar enough with his voice to recognize how He speaks to us!
Instead of complaining that God doesn’t speak to you, start spending more time with Him. The more you get to know Him, the more you will learn to recognize His voice, and once you’ve begun to learn how to hear His voice, it will become easier and easier to understand what He’s telling you!
Oh, and the next time your mother dog leads you into the guestroom and digs at the throw rug, remember, maybe she wants you to move her puppies!
In His love,