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Lessons From An Overly Dramatic Dog by Rachel Leitch

Here's the guest post for March!

I know I'm late, but better late than never right?

This month we did a post swap, so watch for a link to my guest post on Rachel's blog!

These are some very thought-provoking remarks about lessons that Rachel has learned from her dog. She has put together a helpful reminder, and I'm grateful she took the time to make a guest post for me. So, here it is, and enjoy!

Lessons From An Overly Dramatic Dog

Out of nowhere, the 2020 Covid-19 quarantine struck. Schools closed. Churches closed. Stores and businesses closed.

In times of such drastic upheaval, only one logical response became clear.

To get a puppy as quickly as possible.

And so we did.

We didn’t have a hard time choosing him. We put our post lady on the lookout, and she came back a week later with a photo. We looked at it for about thirty seconds and hopped on the phone to call the owner. Before we knew it, we were driving home with a little white puffball hanging his head out the window.

Herbie is a Great Pyrenese/Labrador mix. And he has what some might call a personality.

We were used to our older dog who had recently passed. Milo had been abused as a puppy which made him both more timid and more tolerant overall towards kids and other dogs.

Herbie is none of those things.

And life with an overly dramatic dog has taught me a few things about life as a human.

Sometimes Herbie is really annoying.

He’s quite clingy and pushy—beware to anyone who dares to not pet him.

He likes to rub against the couch, successfully coating it with fur and shoving it several inches to the side, ideally while someone is sitting on it.

If the slightest hint of wind interrupts his daily walks, prepare to bob and weave across the road multiple times to follow leaves, squirrels, and whatever other phantoms he finds. He might even present you with a loving gift of slobber when we return.

Did you know Great Pyrenese bark loudly and often? How about that they get skin infections easily? How about that they have three coats of fur and shed the entirety of those first two coats every spring?

Also, he’s nocturnal.

We knew none of this when we brought him home. All we knew was that so and so had a Great Pyrenese and this one was cute and looked like fun.

What if he had known all this before we got him? Would we have looked at the puppy that squeezed through the fence slats and still said “I choose you”? Would we have even driven out to get him at all?

I think we would have.

Because none of those things affect why we love having Herbie around.

Herbie is always good for a laugh. He can be quite cuddly when he puts his mind to it, and he’s good at seeking out whoever needs comfort.

But even those things, while wonderful, aren’t why we love Herbie.

We love Herbie because we chose him and he’s ours.

And that’s why we put up with even his most annoying behaviors.

I’m really annoying sometimes.

I overthink things and worry about the smallest of things. I get mean and sarcastic when I’m angry. I do too much or I do too little. I could write paragraph upon paragraph about all the annoying things about me.

But that’s not why God loves me.

Even the best things that I do aren’t the reason God loves me.

He loves me because He chose me and I’m His. That’s it. Period. I did nothing to make Him love me, and so nothing I do can make Him love me more or less. His love is perfect and complete just the way it is, just the way I am.

While my actions do matter and I can’t do whatever I want, they don’t affect His love for me.

He loves me when I’m having a really good day and thanking Him for the sunshine and listening kindly to people. And He loves me just as much when I’m having a really bad day and I’m sad and anxious and when I’m snapping at people who mean well.

I always wonder what made Him choose me. He knows everything about me, the most dark and annoying and nasty things included. What in that made him point to me and say “I want that one”?

It blows my mind that He did that, not just for me, but for every other person on the planet. My family. My friends. My neighbors. My coworkers. The person behind me in line at the store. The person I walk past on my way to work.

He knows everything about every one of us, and He still chose each and every one of us.

Maybe someday I’ll know why.

But Herbie doesn’t know why we love him. He just knows he’s got some great humans (albeit a bit dense and annoying). He knows we get him food each day and fill his water and let him outside and take him on walks and buy him toys.

He can’t get us any of those things himself. He can’t do any of those things, those things that mean love to him, for us. He can’t return the favor.

So he just loves us back.

He doesn’t worry about how it will make him look to the dog down the street or whether he’s doing it right or whether he’s being too annoying. He just loves us back.

He doesn’t know why, but he loves anyway.

I don’t know why God loves me. I just know I have a really good God who takes cares of me, provides my needs, and sticks with me in the darkest of times.

I can’t do any of those things myself. I can never match the magnitude of what He has done and still does for me.

But I can love Him back. I can love the other people that He loves so well.

And maybe that’s why God made sure an overly dramatic dog named Herbie found his way to our house that summer. Maybe He knew we’d need the reminder sometimes.

*Do you have a dog or another furry friend? What is he or she like? How might that furry friend remind you of the One Who created both them and you?*

Rachel Leitch discovered the book of writing when she was seven. She’s been turning pages ever since! She lives her own American adventure in northern Indiana, with her parents, three sisters, two brothers, and a dog who thinks he’s the hero of her story. She writes young adult historical fiction with a dash of adventure or a spark of magic. When she’s not hidden away writing, she’s trying to fit all her reads on her shelf in a somewhat organized manner, obsessing over character arcs, drinking chai, daydreaming at the piano, or teaching students to be just as bookish as she is. In all her adventures, she learns how to shine brighter for the Father of Lights. Connect with her at her blog Prose Worthy.

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Aug 12, 2023

This was a lovely post. Got all sniffly and needed to wipe me eyes. God is truly good to us. I think I qualify as a kind-of-bad puppy, too. I whine. A lot. And I tend to chew things. (Any writing instrument I am using gets teeth marks. And I am thoroughly ashamed of it... most of the time.) But God still gives me good things and loves me, even when I growl and make messes that I am utterly unable of cleaning up. (Also, I need pictures of Herbie immediately.) 😂

(Rose Q. Addams)

Aug 12, 2023
Replying to

I try NOT to chew my nails... and I end up chewing the ends of my pens and pencils instead. XD


Apr 28, 2023

Aww I love this. Both our puppy, Belka (yes, we'll probably still call her puppy for a couple years), and our past dog, Love, showed a sort of love to people that was fierce and unconditional. Belka will immediately roll over to let a stranger give her a belly rub, or run up to someone she doesn't know and sit by them. It kind of shows the kind of care we should have for other people when we realize they are made in the image of God. (Eliana Duran)

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