If you’ve followed this blog you read my post “There’s NO business like SNOW business.” And, you know why snowfall is such a big deal to me! Thanks to those of you who responded via this site, email and personally in regards to that post… most encouraging to my soul.
Since there is still 3″-4″ of snow on the ground here and, according to the Weather Channel (MTV for older folks) likely some snow where you are, I wanted to take a 2nd shot at the topic to update you on something our Father is teaching me through snow this winter.
Back in the late Spring, Adele/I had the solidly sad duty of deciding to put our dog, Casey, to sleep. She was a member of our family – a friend. She knew all our junk and still wagged her little rear at us (Pembroke Welsh Corgi – no tail). Our vet – who walked us to/through the whole process, having treated life-threatening illnesses for a couple of years to that point, told us it was the “humane thing to do.” Maybe. It didn’t feel humane.
After a few months of grieving, we decided to plunge back into the dog-world. We have always been dog people… the house was just too still, too quiet, without one. And we loved our little corgi, so we got another one… Elly May.
I want to go on record as saying that I think Elly May is going to be a fine dog. However, I have – to this point – only known her as a puppy. It’s been 22 years since we had a puppy… Casey was a rescue and 3 when we got her – her predecessor (a Bassett Hound named Wrankles) had lived 12+ years. So, puppy-dom is a distant memory.
Elly May has what seems to me to be an insatiably curious energy level. We are over half-way through her 1st year but everything, no matter how often she’s been exposed to it, still seems new to her.
Now, to the snow.
Elly May had never seen snow… clearly had never even dreamed of snow… when her 1st exposure came. We knew
- from the late Fall that she loved cooler weather…
- from early Fall that she couldn’t get enough rain…
- from late Summer that she was a bit of a digger…
But, we never dreamed that these three characteristics would unite in snow! Her enthusiasm was and is palatable! She couldn’t decide whether to look up (where it was coming from) or down (where it lay). Back and forth, her head bobbed – round and round it went like a toy in the back of a car window.
I guess her behavior was normal (if not, please don’t tell us… Adele really loves that dog and I’d hate to have to have her institutionalized… the dog, that is). I know her behavior was entertaining… we are still laughing at her every time we take her out.
Although there is a lot of variety, her most standard behavior is to bounce and bury. She prefers to bounce from one spot to the next rather than walk or run. And, with each bounce she shoots her booty up toward the sky and buries her little face into the snow – coming up with snow-coated whiskers, eyebrows, and snout! Then she stands up, shakes off the snow, and starts all over again. I think she’d do it until she fell down if we didn’t intervene. It’s a hoot to watch!
Finally my point: I previously shared a faith-story about the inseparable link between grace and snow in my own life. I have often found myself thinking (1) grace is something I really, really need; and (2) grace is something that I don’t want to really, really need… hear me out:
- what I want is to live in such a way that I actually reflect the redemption bought for me more and more
- what I want is to disappoint God less… really
- what I want is to be always-conscious that I am hidden with Christ in God, and live that way
I understand, theologically, that I need grace, but I want to live so differently than I do.
Here’s what God is teaching me through snow and Elly May… don’t resist it (the grace)! Relish it!! That’s not a licence to live any old way I want. But it is a release to actually enjoy living… to enjoy grace.. to embrace grace… to enthusiastically bounce around in it – to cover my life with it – to smile, shake, and bounce some more… see it for what it is: an incredible gift from a good and loving God, not merely an accounting procedure.
I guess I’m learning you can teach an old dog (like me) new tricks!