Lessons From A Dog Trainer

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Luke 11 vs. 28 (BSB)
But He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”

I have a friend who is an avid animal lover and trainer. I think of him as the dog whisperer, as he has given me great insight on the best way to acclimate our new puppy into our home, finding the best food to feed him, identifying signs that our animal is depressed, and most of all, teaching our animal to obey.

Once, he shared with me that a neighbor came over to check on his sick mother, and his puppy tried to bite her. He told me that he swiftly put his animal’s head to the ground and held it there for a moment, while he, in his stern voice, yelled “No.” Being a new owner of a puppy, I thought that was harsh, but what he said afterward was profound. He informed me that if he allowed his puppy to continue with this behavior, and his animal bit someone, this could be grounds for putting the puppy down.

While the animal does not understand the dire consequences of his actions, the owner does, and because he loved his animal, he trained him to behave in a way that would protect his life in the future.  Could it be that the things God asks of us are not to hurt us or keep us from having fun, but to protect us? Could it be that there are things in the future that we aren’t aware of, but he is, and because he knows the beginning and the end, he asks that we conduct ourselves in a specific manner, knowing that it will save our lives in the future?

What loving dog owner would allow a behavior that could bring harm to his animal, what loving parent wouldn’t equip their child for the world that’s waiting for them, and what loving God would not give instruction to his children that would provide the best outcome for their lives? So, if you love God, then keep his commandments. The benefits are out of this world.