Saturday, August 29, 2009

She's Back

Dear Friends,
I’ve been away for several months. That is another story for another day. I am so grateful to those of you who sent notes, wondering where I was and praying that I was alright. I am happy to return to Blogland. I had been waiting to dive back in when God sent me a day I could not keep to myself. I love you all and pray my words will cheer your heart.

Three years ago, my daughter Katie and I went to a doggie adoption fair at a local pet store. We met a little fellow who was half pomeranian, half cocker spaniel and 100% heart. Katie instantly fell in love with the dog. But there were two families who had already expressed an interest in him. We added our name to the list. Over the next few days, my daughter asked a dozen times, “Do you think we’ll get that dog, Momma?” I dreaded her response if the dog went to another family.

Two days later, I received the phone call that Mr. W had been found dead of a heart attack. It was a horrible day. That night, the animal shelter called, “Do you still want that dog?” It was a miracle. So at a time of great sadness, Sammy entered our lives, bringing with him a world of comfort and love. Knowing about Katie’s loss, the woman who fostered Sammy ordered a medallion for his collar. It was engraved, “Katie’s Guardian Angel.”

Six months ago, I took a new job. It was my dream job but very demanding of my time. With one daughter off to college and the other immersed in her social life, I watched as Sammy grew sadder and sadder. He stopped following me to the door in the morning. He knew he wasn’t going anywhere. He spent his days alone, whimpering in delight when anyone came home.

This would not do! Sammy had been a ray of sunshine in our lives when we needed it most. I couldn’t bear to see him so sad. Six weeks ago, I knew what I had to do. I had to find Sammy a new home where he would receive the love and attention he craved. After all the joy he had brought us, he deserved nothing less.

Finding Sammy the right home was not as simple as I had hoped it would be. I put out the word, hoping someone in my circle of friends would want him. Nothing happened. I registered him with the adoption group that first brought him to us. I took him to a doggie adoption fair. Nothing happened.

As the weeks dragged on, I was in agony. Every time I hugged and kissed Sammy, I would think, “Soon now, it will be the last time.” I prayed that God would send the right family to us and that He would do it quickly. Just when I thought I couldn’t bear another week of this, God once again showed His love through this little dog with a big heart.

Today, I met a family looking for their first dog. Their twelve year old daughter had been begging for a dog for months. The mom told me how they had agonized over the decision. She had prayed to find just the right dog. I explained that I had been praying just as earnestly for God to send Sammy a wonderful new home.

When the young girl sat down on the floor, Sammy jumped into her lap and stayed there. The girl beamed, her smile made more adorable by a gleaming set of braces. Not only had she found a dog, she had found a friend. A furry, cuddling friend with a warm tummy and plenty of kisses for her. A friend to love her unconditionally through the turbulence of passing from child to young adult.

I told the story of how Sammy had earned the medallion, “Katie’s Guardian Angel”. I explained that I believed his work with us was through. It was time for him to move on to another family in need of a loving pet. I shivered when the mom turned and said, “This is my daughter, Katie.”

So tonight, Sammy has a new home. The medallion I had thought we would keep to remember him went with him. Another Katie has found her guardian angel. Another Katie is rubbing his belly and assuring her mother that Sammy sleeping on her bed would be a good thing. As he sat in his new family’s car to go home, I joked, “Gee whiz, Sammy. You could at least muster a tear or two!” But in my heart, I was thrilled as he smiled. Without a single look back, he rode away to the next stop on his journey of love.

Tonight, two families’ prayers have been answered. God has once again revealed His mercy and His own sense of timing. While the parting is painfully bittersweet, it affirms that God is in control of all things. When we call, He answers more abudantly than we could have wished.

May you feel His grace today,
Gail W.

The last Word:
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Jeremiah 29: 11-13.