Jack’s Harness and Leash

Here in the UK we’ve been having some lovely, warm summer days, but for our dog, Jack, it can be too much. The other morning we were in the park. Jack was enjoying his sniffing pursuits (I call it reading the Doggie Times) and trotting here and there. Then he saw some dogs in the distance. Off he goes like a streak of lightening, or so he thinks he runs so fast. He and the other dogs greeted each other, played chase, wrestled a bit, then ran some more. Oh, what joy for Jack!

When the above chasing game had ended we continued on our way. Jack greeted other dogs he would meet, clearly enjoying his time. Then I noticed his pace slowed. He was hot. I gave him a drink of water which he lapped up. More dogs were in the distance. I could see the yearning in his face to go and join them, but his body was tired. He had physically had enough but he was torn. It was in this moment of great pull to join the other dogs, and his own feeling of tiredness, that he came and stood next to me, looking up at me with a familiar look in his eyes. I took the leash and hooked it to his harness. His trot quickened then as he walked back to the car and home.

Jack knew he was in the midst of indecision — to go and play or go home. What to do! He came to be hooked to the leash that would guide him in the right direction. He yearned for that help. I gave it to him. All was well.

You and I are no different. Many times along life’s journey we are pulled in a direction but unsure as to whether we should walk that way or not. We need not fear. Like Jack, we too, can go to our Shepherd who will lead us along the right path. As we read in Matthew 11:28-30, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart, and you will find rest for you soul.” A yoke upon an animal need not be a harsh thing; it is an instrument to guide along the right path. Our Shepherd always knows the best way to go. When we come close to Him, He will guide us, and best of all, He will go with us.

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