My dad called right before I climbed into bed last night. He had more sad news to share with me. His 13-year-old Dalmatian passed away over the weekend. My dad has been separated from Daisy since last May when he suffered a stroke. After months of rehabilitation, my dad is still bed-ridden and unable to fully care for himself. He has been living in an assisted living home for several months now.
My brother would periodically bring Daisy to visit him. When I was able go home last Fall and visit, I brought her over once to visit him too. Daisy was not a typical dog. I always thought she was more like a cat trapped in a dog’s body. She lacked the “cuddle gene.” I happen to love the cuddle gene that most canines possess. Yet, despite her lack of affection, I know my dad loved her.
Daisy was a stray puppy who, after being hit by a car and left for dead with a broken leg, had been rescued by a shop owner who witnessed the accident. My dad, a man with a soft spot for stray and abused animals, heard about this pup’s rough beginnings and adopted her.
I know my dad will miss her.
My dad is certainly going through a Job-like season of loss. He has lost the use of the left side of his body. He has lost his ability to go home and live independently, (something he wants more than anything else). He lost his 92-year-old mom in October. Since then, two other close friends of his have passed away too.
Last night, I was reminded of how often the Lord chooses to use pain to bring us to our knees. I’m not saying He always causes the heaps of bad stuff to rain down on us, but He certainly finds a way to use those low and hopeless seasons in our life to bring us to a deeper dependence on Him.
It’s often right at the point when all we can do is throw our empty hands up in the air and cry, “Why?!” when we discover how big God is. We discover, with complete certainty, a Savior who loves us deeply and promises to hold onto us through it all.
It’s baffling to think about, isn’t it? Faith encounters don’t make sense to someone on the outside looking in. They only makes sense when, in the midst of our own cries to understand, we discover God standing right there with us. Arms outstretched.
Has God shown up for you like this? I would love to hear about His faithfulness in your life.