My three kids and all the dogs

Disclaimer: Any resemblance to the recently released hit movie “Marley and Me” is entirely intentional.

A couple of years ago, I read the book “Marley and Me” by John Grogan. I enjoyed it so much I was one of the first people last week lined up to see the movie. I can identify with this true story about a journalist and his destructive, yet loving and faithful, yellow lab. My family also has a yellow lab. His name is Boone, but I call him “destructo-dog” or sometimes “monster-dog.” This animal, which doesn’t have a mean bone in his freakishly large body, loves life and everybody. He meets every situation – and every backyard visitor – with the same over-the-top exuberance. Unfortunately, Boone uses this same gusto when tackling little projects like eating the BBQ grill or “trimming” the trees. Boone is my husband’s dog and I don’t let him forget it.

Boone is not the only dog at our house. We also have a black Chihuahua named Harley Davidson. Technically, Harley belongs to my daughter Sarah, but I think he secretly likes me better. While watching “Marley and Me,” every time Marley went on a destructive rampage I thought of Boone. But in those sweet, man’s best friend moments, I thought of Harley. Don’t get me wrong, Boone does have his endearing moments. (Unfortunately those are mostly overshadowed by repair costs.) But Harley’s companionship and loyalty is a constant source of joy. He even seems to know when I’m sad and tries hard to make me feel better.

I believe this joy we find in our pets is one of God’s many blessings. It is no coincidence that God created them with the ability to bring us happiness and even meet emotional needs. Our God is amazing like that. Do you recognize God’s blessings in the everyday things of life? If you’ve never thought much about it, maybe you should go spend some time with your dog.

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