Sunday, July 3, 2011

Restricted Love by JoAnn Lampe

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Restricted Love
“No, Dixie! NO!”

I shouted in vain as my white husky leapt over the fence running for all she was worth. That freedom to run wherever she wanted to go, without the confines of a leash, was just too tempting. Or, maybe it was the cat next door, taunting her as she swished her tail to and fro.
Whatever it was, she was gone and I had to go find her. She could get hurt or she could cause someone else to get hurt as they swerved or slammed on brakes to avoid hitting her.

Grabbing her leash and the car keys, off I went in search of my wayward dog.

Around the corner, a swish of white, “Aha! There you are!” I got out of the car, leash in hand and gently called, “Dixie, come on girl, let’s go for a walk.”

Hearing my voice, she turned, then with blue eyes laughing, she tossed her head and off she dashed, just out of reach, her legs stretching out, running, running, running. Twice more, I caught sight of her and each time, I’d call her name, and she’d turn and run.

Finally, I stopped, because with every attempt to catch her, she was running closer to the busy, main road. I drove away, leaving her to fend for herself.

“Isn’t this exactly what we do to God?”, I thought as I drove off. Sometimes we find a weak spot in the fence, lean on it and before we know it we’ve fallen over and to our surprise, we’re free! This is where we want to be. We haven’t inquired of the LORD, He calls us back; we hear His voice, it’s familiar, so we stop for a minute and glance back, but then we toss our heads and off we go into unknown territory.

I could let Dixie run free, but what would happen to her? There would be danger all around, she doesn’t know to not run into traffic, there would be kind people, but also cruel people, where would she find regular meals and fresh water? Is Dixie restricted? Yes. Is she loved, coddled and taken care of? Yes.

As Christians are we restricted? Yes. Are we loved, and taken care of? Yes. We have a choice, we can come back to the voice of our Father, the good shepherd or we can run into the unknown. What will you choose?

"…The shepherd walks right up to the gate. The gatekeeper opens the gate to him and the sheep recognize his voice. …he leads them and they follow because they are familiar with his voice. …I am the Gate. Anyone who goes through me will be cared for—will freely go in and out, and find pasture. A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of."   John 10: 3-4; 9-10 The Message 

JoAnn works for Wells Fargo Bank and volunteers at Wings of Eagles Ranch. She has 2 married daughters, a grandson and a granddaughter who’s “on the way”. Her dogs, “Honey” and “Princess Dixie” keep her company.
Dixie was returned, by a kind neighbor, but keeps “testing” the fence, hoping for another adventure.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, JoAnn, for this "reality check" reminder taken from your experience with Dixie. God has spoken to me more than once through the behavior of my dog, but you have captured a specific scenario with a terrific take-away. I'm grateful!


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