Our sweet dog, Jack, is his own worst enemy. Next month he will be six years old. In that time we’ve taken him to the vet several times for tummy upsets. A year ago he was even in intensive care for four days! Why? He’s a scavenger and eats things he should not eat! The intensive care stay was a result of acorns. Last week and this week he’s been back to the vets because of devouring what he should never eat.
Jack has good food. We even have to buy expensive, grain free food for him. His treats are grain free. His water is filtered. It’s all good and plentiful, so why on earth will he be tempted by, and succumb, to nasty things that make him sick? Oh, that unwise at times, but lovable dog who captured our hearts. What will we do? We will continue to love him, comfort him, scold him when we catch him in the act, and then love him some more. We will always provide for his needs with the greatest of pleasure. We will not give up on him.
Aren’t all of God’s children, at times, just like scavenger Jack? Our Heavenly Father provides what we need everyday of our lives. He gives us His own courage, joy, peace, direction. Still, as we are running about in our personal busyness, we see things that look tasty. We are tempted to go where we should not go, to engage in something we should avoid, to speak words that should never come from our lips, behave in a manner that is not godly.
What happens when we succumb to such temptations? We become spiritually sick. If we stray too long from the good food our Father provides for us in His Word, or ignore communication with Him, we become distant, downcast, lacking inner peace, void of abiding joy. What can we do? Go back! Go back to that place we left His ways. Go back to the table He keeps prepared for us; tables laden with everything good for our everyday living. Eating from His table keeps us strong, ready to face the hardships this world throws at us.
When we stray, how lovely that we can return to our Father, knowing He waits with the door open, desiring to restore us, to bathe us in forgiveness and love. He may scold us, but His compassion and mercy is fresh every morning. It is His great pleasure to provide everything we need to get through everyday of our lives with our spiritual health intact. He will never give up on us.
“The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh every morning.” Lamentations 3:22-23