My dogs brought me a present the other afternoon. I walked out onto the carport and there by my chair, where I like to sit in the morning with my last cup of coffee, lay a dead possum. Not just any dead possum—this one they had buried for awhile so it would age properly, then dug up to lay before my “throne.” I imagine that when the wind blew the right way, my neighbors knew about my present too.
I have had cats bring me equally lovely gifts before, but this was a first for dogs. As you can imagine, I did not jump for joy. In fact, I hardly expressed any appreciation at all. I had not felt very good that day—these medications do a number on my stomach, and this gift, no matter how sincerely it may have been meant, did not help.
These two small creatures rely on me for everything. I feed them, make sure they have their vaccinations and medications, care for them when they feel bad, and play with them when I have the chance. And for that little bit they want nothing more in this world than to please me. Red heelers are often called “Velcro dogs” because they stick next to their masters’ sides. Magdi and Chloe will even turn their noses up at a treat just so I can pet them. Loving is much more important to them than food.
And if for any reason I am displeased with them, their ears go down, their heads bow, their tails are tucked and they practically crawl on their knees to me. Magdi will rub her head against my leg over and over. I know she is saying, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m so, so sorry.” If she isn’t, she certainly has me fooled.
So how do I treat my Master? Do I want nothing more in the world than to please Him? Do I repent on my knees in abject sorrow when I know I don’t? Or am I too proud for that? Do I truly understand that any gift I give is really no more to Him than that dead possum was to me? Do I appreciate that I can never repay what He has done for me, and therefore try my best to show gratitude and reverence with the gift of obedience and faith, a gift that still falls far short of repayment?
Sometimes I wonder if dogs show more respect for their masters than we do for ours, and their masters are anything but perfect, holy, and awesome. Maybe we should take a lesson.
For we are all become as one who is unclean, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away…Even so you also, when you have done all the things that are commanded you say, “We are unprofitable servants. We have done that which it was our duty to do,” Isa 64:6; Luke 17:10.