He answered me, "My child, seek first the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you. This should help you stay on track. I know the whole idea is pulling at your heart strings, you may offer that to Me as a fast offering, but don't let it distract or pull you down."
"With Your help, Lord. You know how easily I am distracted; I really need your help here. I am so weak."
And looking at pictures of dogs reminded me of Bruno, and that was hard.
"I know," He answered, "and I will not abandon you in that weakness. When you are tempted, I will provide guidance and a way out. I will never leave you on your own here. I do have a surprise in mind."
"Oh Jesus, I trust in You. I would much rather have the dog of Your choice than my own. I waited for Bruno the way You had asked me to, and You brought him to me. I really miss him, Lord." I had a few tears there...
"I know. Keep your heart and mind fixed on Me, Clare, and I will do the rest. I created dogs to be companions to men, but so few treat them as true members of their family. When they do I rejoice, because that creature has the need to be loved and provided for just like a child.
"I use animals mightily to reach through to hard-hearted humans. They've been turned off to Me by abusive and manipulative parents, and a dog is one animal that most represents My unconditional love. When a soul is deeply troubled or hurting, it can count on coming home to a wagging tail and eager, loving heart. Wives and husbands can't even give that kind of comfort all the time. It goes beyond the intellect, straight to the heart and soul of men and women.
"This is one reason why the elderly woman you were taking care of seemed to enjoy living like an animal in her surroundings."
She had four or five dogs, little barkers, you know - pee and poop anywhere dogs... It just drove me nuts!
"That's the only love." He continues " that woman's known for most of her life. The danger comes when the animal becomes a replacement for human interaction. Then the soul loses touch with painful realities such as rejection and they tend to put all their energies into avoiding people except for what they can get from them when they need something.
"I created dogs to be fail safe companions when the rest of the world is at odds with you, but never a substitute for human companionship. In Heaven, everyone will treat you like the sweetest dog you ever had. There's a comparison for you to think about. In Heaven, every soul will give you tail-wagging, unconditional love."
I'm going to get it for this statement, Lord....
"What is that to Me?"
"That's correct...what people say is nothing to Me, although it hurts Me when you come under attack."
Well, I'd rather speak what You want me to speak and get into trouble than to withhold one word of Yours, Lord.
"I know, that's why you go out on a limb with Me all the time. But truly, the sweetest dog you ever had is very reflective of the kinds of greetings that souls in Heaven. They are always glad to see you, their entire focus is on you, and honoring you as they honor Me. In fact, each one of My Creatures is a reflection of a very tiny part of My nature, although not the corrupted part since the fall of Adam and Eve. That is why the redeemed Earth will be a living paradise. Love and order will be restored to the Earth in the millennium, and again at the end of ages.
"Peace will flood over the Earth as waves upon the sea. What a tremendous blessing you will someday have when I restore all things to their rightful order. Love will infuse all creatures and man will shepherd the creatures rightly.
"But in the meantime, I want you to enjoy your animals. I want to see your eyes light up and smiles cross your lips as you delight in their joyous and uncomplicated antics. Just as I delight to see your wonder on a golden autumn day, so do I rejoice to see the exchange of love and joy from one creature to another."
And when He said that, I was reminded of a Scripture in Romans 8:21 Creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. Amen.
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