It was a beautiful fall morning, and I was working in my flower bed. It was time to prepare for the unknown weather conditions of the upcoming winter. It was time to prepare the outdoors for cold weather.
When I went indoors to gather my garden tools, my dog was sitting by the front door. She was waiting for me. Hoping I would come indoors and spend time with her. On a Saturday afternoon, she prefers to sit by my side. She enjoys being in my presence.
So I got her leash and tied her up outside near the flower bed. She wanted so badly to be near me that she sat right in the middle of the flower bed. She sat as close as she could possibly get to me. She just wanted to be with me. She loves me. She trusts me. She enjoys being with me.
After awhile, she ventured further away. She sat several feet away in the grass enjoying the beautiful day. She sat where she could always see me. She wanted to keep me in her line of sight. She wanted me to know that she was waiting for me to come close. She hoped I would take a break from my work to sit down and rub her belly. She wanted me to make time for her. She wanted to know that I felt the same love for her that she felt for me.
This dog guards me like it’s nobody’s business. She stands glued to my side. She even protects me from the man whose name I share. She will stand in front of me to make sure I’m ok when he and I are in the same room. If he tries to hug me, she jumps on him. She protects me from her perceived evils. She is my guard and protector.
The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. Psalms 145:18
Oh. How my Heavenly Father does the same for me. He loves me. He wants me to spend time with him. He’s always there. Waiting. Hoping I’ll set aside the things I call important to be with him.
There are times he sits so close that I can’t move without bumping into him. And I love that. I want to always be in his presence. Don’t I? There are other times that he is watching from the sidelines. He’s hoping that I’ll put down my garden tools of life and choose to open his word. The book of life he’s given me to read. He wants to be with me. He wants me to love him the way that he loves me. He wants to spend time with me. He wants me to want to spend time with him. But he doesn’t force me. He allows me to choose my priorities and allegiances.
God is my protector. He is my shield and defender in time of battle. He goes before me and behind me. He surrounds me with his presence. In known dangers and even in unknown, he is with me. He hides me in the cleft of the rock and covers me with his blood of redemption.
The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name. Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me. You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings. Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the Lord forever. Psalms 23:1-6