For the Love of Dogs

Last Sunday, our worship theme was based on a member suggestion that “We should aspire to be more like dogs for their unconditional love.”   Here is a little nugget from the sermon that was exploring the quote “Lord, help me to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am.”

I think, “The kind of person my dog thinks I am” does not really have much to do with how good, kind, generous, friendly, and loving we really are.  I think dogs may be quite aware of our faults and flaws – and love us anyway.  I think the answer lies in their ability to find good in what we find imperfect.

How can we answer the question: What kind of person does my dog think I am?  The answer is simple: Lovable.  Just lovable.  Not because we are good, kind, generous, friendly, and loving.  We don’t earn it.  We just are: Lovable.

For some humans, I think that it is harder to accept being lovable than it is to try being good, kind, generous, friendly, and loving.  Too many humans have been taught that love has to be earned, and that they probably haven’t earned it.

But dogs know better.  They know what kind of person you really are… imperfect, sometimes cranky, sometimes even mean, and they love you anyway.  Why?  Because they know what kind of person you really are… inherently lovable.  Lovable, in spite of all that other stuff.

Living in the moment was the second most common thing (after giving unconditional love) that people told me they learned from the dogs in their lives.   Dogs don’t worry about what has already happened.  They don’t worry about what will happen next.  They enjoy the here-and-now, the encounter with the present moment.

You can, of course, find counter examples.  There are dogs that have been so traumatized that nervousness and anxiety sets in.  I do not find this to be the norm.

I think it is this ability to live in the moment that makes it so easy for dogs to be loving.  They are not holding grudges.  They are not worrying about if you will live up to their standards.

There you are!… right in front of them!… available to be loved!… and so they do!  It’s amazing!!!

What if we could be that present… to the moment that we are in… and to the person standing in front us… available to be loved?

What if, this week, every time you looked at a person, any person, you thought to yourself, oh look, a person available to be loved!

How would it change you?  How might it change the people you encounter?

I wonder…

T0 read or listen to the entire sermon at click here.

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2 Responses to For the Love of Dogs

  1. Donnie and Teddy approve this message!

    AND, though Teddy is a prime example of that dog mentioned with a harrowing past (we think….either that or some unexplained, biological neurological stress disorder), he is still loving and lovable to an annoying fault. ;O)

  2. Sandy Cawthern says:

    oh! this is my favorite topic.
    My gift at the no kill shelter was to love the traumatized dogs. As I held them, I found myself entering a timeless place of souls that I call Bardo. I felt a bliss in being together.
    My experience is that dogs can “read” our internal states no matter how we may try to mask them.
    My experience is that dogs are cooperative. They love to have a purpose and to play and to be still together.

    Thanks for introducing a new concept to experiment here at 1U, my living lab…being lovable! LOL

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