Forgive me if I was slow in getting this week’s devotion out. You see, I am the proud parent of a new puppy! When we brought our mini Golden Doodle, “Jewel,” home she seemed so quiet and demure, probably a little frightened by the change of scenery. I thought a passive dog would be good for this high energy, type A family. Perhaps Jewel would calm us down a bit. However, within a couple of days, Jewel’s personality took a dramatic turn. The sweet, quiet dog we brought home became a rather active and mischievous puppy. I found that I cannot take my eyes off “Jewel.” Otherwise she will leave a present for us on one of the carpets in the house or better yet, chew off another leaf from my favorite rubber plant near the kitchen window. Nothing is off limits to soothe Jewel’s teething pain, including the furniture. Her leaping ability at 14 weeks is beyond measure, and we have to be on guard at all times or she will leap right into our face! I’ve lost three pounds since Jewel came home with us. It’s a lot like having a toddler in our house!
So what does this have to do with God or anything spiritual, besides my daily prayers that our household items will remain intact and uncarved? It reminded me a little bit of how life can turn in a short period of time, for good or bad. Initially, I thought our puppy was going to be one way; two days later. she is another. Often times, we expect our lives to go one direction, but many times, it just doesn’t happen that way. So what do we do, when life takes a left turn and does not meet our expectations? One of my favorite verses is Proverbs 16:9, which tells us, “A man’s heart plans his way; but the Lord directs his steps.” There it is! It is confirmation that life will not always go as we plan, but we must trust that whatever happens is directed by the Lord. Can we trust God with the steps of our lives? Can we be at peace when life does not follow our blueprint?
In my case, I know that eventually Jewel will get past the puppy stage and life will calm down at our household again. In the case of more serious things that happen, I have to trust that the Lord will see me through it and that whatever is going on is part of his much larger, glorious plan. Remember these encouraging words from Proverbs 3:5: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”