My husband and I have an English bulldog named Sprocket. We have had him for eight years and he is spoiled rotten. Like proud parents, we could fill your ears with stories about his personality and behavior. Having him is truly like “having a child” as the saying goes. One of the ways he is like a child is he wants to go in and out all day long. I can hear my parents now telling me and my siblings as we were growing up, “Quit running in and out, either come in or stay out.” Many times I find myself wanting to say the same thing to Sprocket because I find myself at the backdoor too many times in one day. It gets difficult in the summer because he will be at the door whining to go out and I cannot let him out because of the heat. English bulldogs can get overheated quickly and with temperatures topping out near 100 it’s not good for them to be outside. However, as a dog he does not understand when I tell him that.
One day he was at the door whining to go out and with temperatures above 100 I had to tell him no. It broke my heart, but I knew what was best for him. I knew that being inside was better for him even though he wanted to go out. Even though I was telling him “No” I was doing so with a heart of compassion, care, and wisdom. God showed me in that moment His character as a Father to me. I could imagine myself like Sprocket wanting something that may not be what is best for me. I could picture myself whining when I wasn’t getting what I wanted. BUT, God reminded me that just as my heart was in saying NO to Sprocket, His heart was the same when He says NO to me.
My Father wants what is best for me even when I may not understand.
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” Jeremiah 29:11 (ESV).
“You’ve gone into my future to prepare the way, and in kindness you follow
behind me to spare me from the harm of the past. You have laid your hand on me!” Psalm 139:5 (TPT).
My Father protects me and keeps me safe even when I feel like He is withholding.
“His massive arms are wrapped around you, protecting you. You can run under
his covering of majesty and hide. His arms of faithfulness are a shield keeping you from harm” Psalm 91:4 (TPT).
My Father is good even when I feel like He is unkind.
“Though he brings grief, he also shows compassion because of his unfailing love. For he does not enjoy hurting people or causing them sorrow” Lam 3:32-33 (NLT).
“You are good and what you do is good...” Psalm 119:68
May I learn to trust the Father in caring for me as He reminds me that He is doing so from a heart of compassion, goodness, and wisdom. When I feel like He is withholding, and I don’t understand “why”, may I remember WHO.