Puppy Dog Eyes

For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises up again; But the wicked are overthrown by calamity. Proverbs 24:16 WEB.

She was a black and tan dachshund chihuahua mix named "Lady." After finding her homeless and living on the street, I adopted the little dog. Apparently, she had been abused in the past. Whenever she did something she thought was wrong, she would tuck her tail between her legs, walk away slowly, and hide behind the couch. If she even heard a loud voice on the television, she assumed it was her fault and that I was mad at her. No amount of coaxing would stop her or bring her back out. Because of her past, she wrongfully assumed that all communication aimed at her was negative.

Eventually, she would peek around the corner with those sad little puppy dog eyes, so hurt that she had disappointed me. I would catch her looking out, give her a warm smile, and she would bolt into my lap and lick me like I was some tall, delicious lollipop. She was so thrilled that she was accepted. Then she would claw her way under my shirt, curl up and go to sleep, happy and content.

So many times, when we stumble in our Christian walk, we want to withdraw from everyone and everything. We believe that God is mad at us, so we hide, scared to face what may be coming, fearing punishment. Our past treatment causes us only to see more of the same abuse, and we can have a hard time trusting God. We begin to feel like, "They all hate me."

Yet, God isn't mean, and Jesus Christ has already paid for every sin you have committed in the past and future. He even paid for your great-grandparents' sins and those of your great-grandchildren on that rugged cross. We only have to ask, and we are forgiven and accepted.

A failure is an event, not a person. It's a blip on a timeline and not your life. There is nothing to hide from. When you come out from behind the couch, you will find that you are accepted. You can happily be snuggling in your Father's arms again.

We hide just as Adam hid from God in the garden, and it is up to us to come back out. Like with Adam, God will call to us, but He won't force us to come out of our hiding place. When you fall, get up, keep going, keep moving forward. Jesus isn't mad at you, and He will welcome you right back into His loving arms with no condemnation. You don't have to hide anymore.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I thank You for Your loving kindness today. Please forgive me for my past. This is a new day, and I am turning over a new leaf. Today is the first day of the rest of my life, and I will live it for You. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!

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