A beautiful story that has emerged from the current COVID-19 pandemic is the striking rise in pet adoptions, particularly dogs. Sheltering in place has encouraged people to find new companions to combat loneliness and/or to find additional comfort during a crisis. As an owner of a rescue dog, I am very pleased by this development. Certainly, all of the reasons that are given are true and I would like to add my own observations.
A common phrase that is expressed during this pandemic is, “Social distancing does not mean social disconnection.” We need this reminder as our lifestyles change because we all need and seek companionship. A dog is an ideal solution. For anyone who has ever owned a dog, the devotion they show to their owner is remarkable and endearing. They will wait by the door until you return, never certain whether you will. And when you do, the reunion is as if we have not seen one another for years. It is a constant longing and willingness to please one’s master that forges such a close bond between dog and man. As a dog-loving friend once remarked to me, “Dogs provide unconditional love and accept you for all your flaws…more than what some humans are capable of doing.” Isn’t this what God does for us?
Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, As the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, So our eyes look to the LORD our God, Until He is gracious to us.
Psalms 123:2 (NASB)
We are created by God for fellowship with Him. Our pets’ desire to bond with us mirrors our true nature to bond with God. Does God experience the same type of pleasure in our relationship with Him? There is always a danger to impart human characteristics to an omnipotent and omniscient God. Yet when we do, we can gain some insight into the depth and complexity of the love that God has for us. Most certainly God’s pleasure is infinitely greater than anything we can imagine or conceive. God does delight in us when we place Him first in our soul and honor Him with thanksgiving.
Our relationships on this earth and with our dogs are a glimpse of the glorious relationship with God, our Creator. There is a God-shaped hole in our hearts that can only be fulfilled and satisfied by an eternal relationship with Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.
As we continue to adopt pets, allow God to adopt you as His own child through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.