Reblog: The simple art of trusting, dog style

The simple art of trusting, dog style

By Pat Collins (Reblogged from

As I worked at my desk this morning, I looked down to see our two small dogs, Lucky and Bo-Bo, lying peacefully in their little beds. Even though it was approaching midday, they seemed to think it was an appropriate time to take yet another nap.

I hated to interrupt their “well-deserved” rest, but I really needed to use the shredder. As I put the papers into the hopper, the shredder came alive with its loud, high-pitched whir as it ate up the paper. I looked at the dogs, still peacefully lying there. I had a sense that they knew they were cared for, regardless of all the noise around them; they knew that I’m the one who cares for them, and I was there. All was well, and I would protect them.

Such trust… Read more

My dog Nya

I love my dog Nya.

Nya is so radiant with joy. She is always happy. She also expresses the spiritual qualities of readiness and alertness. And she is so energetic.

She is ready to go whenever I say, and she always watches me to see if she is needed to respond.

She is a true child of God in this way.  May we all be as vigil in our spiritual devoutness; keeping our eyes on our Father-Mother God at all times; joyfully waiting for God’s call, expectant and ready.

She is so pure and innocent. She never has a malicious motive or purpose. Her purity is a wonder to me.

We all have the spiritual innocence and purity that we see express in these friends in our lives.  It reminds me of  an excerpt from Mary Baker Eddy’s address at the National Convention in Chicago on June 13, 1888.

“Beloved children, the world has need of you, — and more as children than as men and women: it needs your innocence, unselfishness, faithful affection, uncontaminated lives. You need also to watch, and pray that you preserve these virtues unstained, and lose them not through contact with the world. What grander ambition is there than to maintain in yourselves what Jesus loved, and to know that your example, more than words, makes morals for mankind!”

She is referencing Jesus’ love for children in this excerpt. When human reasoning tempted Jesus’ disciples and they asked the question, “Who will be greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Jesus responded by calling a little child over, and he said: “Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”

Let’s claim the innocence, purity, joy – the childlikeness – we see around us as our own. And keep our lives, our thought, untainted from the world.

God’s individual care: spiritual lessons from dog training

This week I’ve been thinking about how individual God’s care is – specific for every need.  

Christ Jesus shares this metaphor:

“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home.” (NIV, Luke 15:4-6)

This week, my husband and I have been working on dog training. I’m so grateful for Judy Moore’s training method called “Dialogue”. Reading her book and studying her training method has shown me yet another example of God’s individual love and care. 

“The real purpose of dog training ought to be to make the dog’s instincts, not so much the dog himself, submissive to human authority. What I mean by that is, in simple terms, the goal of training should be to enable the dog to override his instincts with response to his owner. Luckily for us, dogs have one instinct which they can safely obey and which we can use to help us to achieve this goal. This one instinct is the dog’s overriding natural desire to communicate with humans.” (Dogs Deserve Dialogue, p. 22)

Judy teaches that dogs can live in approval and praise, and not punishment; dogs do this by asking question the question “what should I do right now?” before everything they do and getting the right answers from his human parents which they always deliver; this builds the dog’s confidence and self-esteem, and reveals who the dog really is – one who naturally wanting to be obedient and a good dog. 

Isn’t this symbolic of our relationship with God? God is always praising us and giving us confidence in our ability to succeed. He would never punish us because fear is an element of punishment and could never be a factor in an all-loving and trusting relationship.

Have you ever been corrected by someone in such a gentle, loving way that it showed you how silly your mistake was and how you could easily and joyfully do better? I have! What a privilege it is to be corrected in this way without any loss to your self-confidence or self-esteem.  In just the same way, God corrects us when we don’t do the right thing but this correction is always coming from His loving nature and never costs our self-respect; He encourage and nurtures us. 

Judy also points out that there are no bad dogs or stupid dogs. If this seems to be the case it simply shows that the dog is obeying his instincts that have often been bred for centuries.  All dogs are bred for a purpose and this purpose may involve more human interaction or less (this is what we perceive as a smart or less smart dog).  Each one has a love for human companionship and is able to establish this communication with their owner that won’t diminish their natural instinct or skill, but rather enhances and provides them with safety and confidence in a human world.  

This reminds me of this passage from the Bible about God: “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27).

Each of us has the individual voice of God (which can also be thought of as the Christ) within us showing us the way. This voice reveals how very special we are; how talented, loved and cherished we are; how our unique individuality has been made specially as a light of God.  

We, too, can cultivate the mental discipline of yielding and asking God first before we do each thing. He is always showing us the way and causing us to prosper. 

And here’s a fun song/video for the dog-lovers to enjoy: