I was born into a Christian home on December 24th. A day that would insure that my birthday would always be celebrated within the the holiday cheer of the season. Throughout the years it had become a time of introspection and a time to take a look back at the previous year and get some perspective. I went to church, attended Sunday school, and was surrounded by the word of God. Eventually as I entered into a later stage of my life, around the Junior and Senior year of high school, I began to more critically examine if the Christian walk had actually given me the joy and happieness that I had always told it would give me. I’ve always been different in the way I see the world and that had always given way to endless teasing. At some point, I took a clear and decisive move to completely turn from the Christian way of living, to completely abandon the entire concept of a Christian God and intentionally pursue my own independant answers. I even prayed something to that effect and then turned around and walked away from the Church and from God.
Over the following years I explored everything the world had to offer and all the different ways man attempted to gain power over his own life through his own means. This lead me through a Godless marriage and on to an incredibly emotionally damaging divorce. This eventually landed me jobless and back at home with my parents. I was close to the bottom and I constantly struggled with trying to find reasons to keep living. The family dog, Cinnamon, was my only companion while my parents where at work and I had the house to myself. When she died some time later, I found myself surrounded by profound emptiness. I know my parents were praying for me because when they got home one day, I told them I couldn’t handle being home alone and could we get another dog.
I found Ginger on a farm and my parents drove several hours to pick her up for me. She became my companion and in many ways she was my own child for the next 10 years. It was rare for her to be home without me or for me to go anywhere without her. Her very presence kept me from becoming completely lost and her love and companionship where just what my wounded heart needed. Several years ago, through another set of circumstances, I found myself coming back around and now taking a look at the reality of the Christian faith. I once again began seeking God, but this time I was talking to him but still finding him in my own way.
In October of 2020, Ginger did something unusual that put her in the path of another dog and it attacked her. I came to her side and saw the light die in her eyes as she saw me. I saw the other dog being held by one of it’s owners. Both dogs were not where they were supposed to be. I picked up my dead dog and God told me it was a tragedy and nothing more and in that moment, from the true depths of my heart, I forgave them. Then when they stopped by the house, I told them that I forgave them because Jesus forgave my sins and that was the least that I could do. My pain was deep and my mourning would take months.
That was the day God tore off the self made shield I didn’t know I was hiding behind. That was the day I finally saw. It felt like that during my life I had only belived the sky was blue because everyone told me it was, but on that day, I looked up and saw the sky was blue for myself. That was the day God showed me only a glimpse of the depth of his love. That single moment, and what I believe to be Ginger’s sacrifice, brought me closer to God that I have ever been. I rejoice in my own pain because it was what was necessary to bring me fully into God and to truly accept him into my life. I believed for myself and not just because I believed mans word.
I believe by God’s own word.
The pain of that loss is still with me and I can’t even write these words without needing to take a steadying breath. I still have days where I miss her love and the little things she used to do. Still, they are tears of sorrow and joy all mixed up and I’m still glad for God. Now I’m on this journey and I told him I’m willing to give my life in service if it’s his will. I also told him I wouldn’t mind having another dog; something I’ve been praying for since the day of Gingers death. There have been a multitude of obstacles that have prevented me from getting another dog.
This story isn’t over yet. Someday I’ll find the right dog at the right time that will be both the beginning of a new story and the end of the old one.
God takes anyone no matter their past and he will heal any wound no matter how deep and he will come to you in your moment of distress. We have all strayed from God and we have all sinned but anyone can find that joy and true salvation. No matter your past, God sent his son to die for all your failures, for all those wrong you’ve done and for all the sin in your past, your present and your future. He loves you and will accept you into his kingdom and give you that gift of eternal life. All you have to do is talk directly to him. Ask him to forgive you for your sins, tell him you believe that he sent his son Jesus to save you from those sins and you accept his gift of eternal life.
If you would like to talk to someone about God’s gift of eternal life, you can use the contact form to get in touch with me.