MORE LESSONS from LEROY
He’s at it again, the dog teaching the master in the way of life. A year ago, I shared some of my observations about my dog Leroy that helped me understand what it meant to wait on The LORD. I explained when Leroy is engaged in retrieving the ball; he waits…expectantly, shaking in anticipation. Also, Leroy waits with a focus that’s a lost art in our smart phone generation. So, that’s what I noticed about Leroy last year. Here are some lessons Heaven’s hound has helped me see this year: 1) Proximity: as his master I’ve noticed wherever I go, Leroy follows. If I get up to change rooms, he’s up. If I sit down, he sits, if I’m in and he’s out, his nose is against the glass creating his popular smudge art designs. He keeps his eyes on me and studies how I move. He knows by my tone, the way I’m walking and looks I give what’s next without me saying a word. By staying right by my side, he knows and continues to learn what I expect of him. He’s perfecting the art of following close behind, staying out of my way when I change direction and you know what – he gets to go with me now more than he used to. I know he understands what I expect and I trust him with more. My Lesson Learned: stay close to Jesus; study His ways, keep my eyes on Him and be ready to react to where I see Him move. Life is best with Him and if there’s more, I don’t want to miss out.
2) Rest: okay, this is one of my favorite things about my dog. When it’s hot outside and I return home, I let Leroy in, he settles down on the floor next to my desk or at my feet if I’m on the couch watching TV. As soon as he gets the idea I’m not going anywhere, maybe two minutes on the cold AC floor, I hear a loud, deep exhale. In fact, I can be about anywhere in our house and hear his exhale. It’s like he’s saying, “AHHHH, cold floor, at the feet of my master…life’s good.” And with that, he’s out, resting, sleeping, gone to dreamland. My Lesson Learned: this dog trusts me. If I say it’s time to lay down, he lets it all out and rests. 100% rest. We need to trust and rest like Leroy! Phone off, or silent, face down, in the other room, eyes shut or however you make the world stop. Do you know what an ENO is? Get one! Listen to David in the 23rd Psalm: “The LORD is my Shepherd; I have everything I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; He leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength…” (Psalm 23:1-3 NLT). He lets me…He leads me…He renews. We need to learn how sit or lie down and breathe out Leroy’s big exhale - regularly.
3) Fully Convinced: “He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises.” (Romans 4:21 NLT). Leroy is fully convinced his master is able to do whatever he is counting on me to do. Food – every day, on the money. Water – always there. Throw the ball – his master loves to play with him. Even when I’m busy; he knows if he waits, staring in and smudging the window – I’ll eventually come out and play. I had a big chocolate lab years ago that I had trained to hunt. His name was Boone and Boone was an awesome hunter. By bird hunting with me, Boone knew what Leroy doesn’t. When I shot, sometimes I hit the bird and he got to retrieve it, and sometimes I missed. I’m still haunted by the angry and frustrated glares Boone gave me after a missed shot, in a duck blind. Boone was not fully convinced. Well, Leroy hasn’t been hunting with me and has no idea I’m not always able. So guess who’s gonna be a tennis ball retriever for the rest of his life? My Lesson Learned: GOD is able. The way Leroy expects me to come through for him, I know GOD is able to come through for me…and then some. Be fully convinced! Being fully convinced relieves stress, helping us trust and rest.
My hope is you see GOD has been gracious, redeeming some of the time I've spent throwing the ball to my friend and provided a little wisdom for me to share. If you agree with what I see, then let’s be a little more like Leroy; staying in close proximity to our Master, trusting Him enough to really rest and being fully convinced He is able to do whatever He promises.