My beautiful lab, Savanna, is old.
Yes, there it is. I’ve said it.
For almost sixteen years we have shared the ups and downs of life.
I could always count on Savanna’s soft nuzzling of my hand but these days it’s all that she can do to stand up. Her big eyes meet mine and I know she wishes that she could do what she used to do.
But old as she is, she’s still teaching me lessons like the one I learned today.
This morning she surprised me as the playful pup in her surfaced.
Before I could pick it up from the floor, she grabbed a crumbled scot towel in her mouth.
“Oh come on, “I begged. “You don’t want that.”
I took hold of the white part still showing and tugged.
But Savanna pulled back. No, she wasn’t going to let me have it.
This was simply too much fun.
I tried again but she turned her head determined to hold onto the paper.
Then a brilliant idea came to mind. A dog bone.
I stood up and felt her eyes watching me wondering why I had stopped the game.
As she turned to walk around the other side of the room, I took a dog bone from the box,
quickly slipped it in my pocket and went back to her.
The sides of her black mouth bulged revealing the hidden treasure she held.
“Savanna, want a bonie?” I called flipping the dog bone close enough for her eyes now dim with age to see.
Without thinking, she dropped the crumpled towel and gobbled up the dog bone.
I quickly scooped up the wet ball of paper and smiled with relief. And while my loveable lab continued to look for the missing treasure I pondered what had just happened.
If someone has something or is into something that is not good for them,
give them something better that you know they will like.
If you or I find ourselves holding onto meaningless or possibly harmful stuff,
let’s intentionally distract ourselves with something better.
Raise the ladder.
Choose the healthy and edifying.
Turn from in order to turn to.
Help me, Lord, to give up those things that are just not good for me
and to take those crumbs of real nourishment that you throw my way every day.