From his earliest days, I was the one who got out of bed at 3:00 a.m. to take Max outside. I’m still the one who feeds him daily, gives him baths, takes him to the vet, and cleans up his messes. When he runs off, I’m the one who tromps through the woods to go look for him. When he picks a fight with my daughter’s cat (she outweighs him by ten pounds) I’m the one who rushes in to rescue him. I do this because despite all the trouble he gets into, I love him.
Max was in a playful mood one day, and my husband and I took turns tossing a plastic toy for him to fetch. When playtime was over, I called Max to come sit with me on the couch. He refused, and sat staring at the toy clutched in my husband’s hand instead.
“Max, come sit,” I repeated.
He wavered. I could see the hesitation in his eyes as he looked from me to the toy. In the end, he chose the toy.
And then it occurred to me. God cares for me. He feeds and shelters me. He clothes me. When I was lost, He came looking for me. He binds up my hurts and rushes in to protect me. And yet. . .I don’t always choose Him. In my words and deeds, I sometimes turn away from the One who gave me life. Thankfully, God is faithful, and despite all the trouble I get into, I am comforted by this knowledge—my Lord loves me. The decision whether or not to follow Him is mine. I will make it. . .daily.
Joshua 24:14-18 (New International Version)
14 "Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. 15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD." 16 Then the people answered, "Far be it from us to forsake the LORD to serve other gods! 17 It was the LORD our God himself who brought us and our fathers up out of Egypt, from that land of slavery, and performed those great signs before our eyes. He protected us on our entire journey and among all the nations through which we traveled. 18 And the LORD drove out before us all the nations, including the Amorites, who lived in the land. We too will serve the LORD, because he is our God."