Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 3:8-14
He was a mix of exceedingly sweet – and sometimes terribly tenacious. But I am thankful for all the time I had with him – despite the extreme stress his behavior sometimes placed on me and despite the fact I fell into sin periodically with my own temper and impatience for which I had to repent before the Lord and to ask Dancer’s forgiveness.
Unlike for most people who say goodbye to their beloved animals with a peaceful euthanization process, mine was exceedingly emotionally upsetting as Dancer unexpectedly despite the sedation threw his usual at-the-vet temper tantrum and fought tooth and nail through the whole process making it extraordinarily upsetting, traumatic, dramatic, and indescribably difficult.
The Lord can bring good out of anything when we are yielded to Him, and by His grace, I was able to call on Him aloud and to talk to the veterinarian and his staff whom I had never met about the Lord Jesus Christ, my testimony, and ministry work – and to give them Gospel tracts.
This very same week, I drove about 11 hours in one day with all the ministry dogs and our belongings to our newest destination in New Jersey just outside New York City and then spent the next few days caring for Dancer who went extremely downhill medically and behaviorally. I also dealt with several very emotionally painful issues related to loved ones coupled with hearing some difficult news related to a personal challenge of another loved one.
Given I left the Florida Panhandle just a month ago, spent three weeks ministering in West Virginia, had numerous issues at both locations particularly in Florida where I stayed, combined with all this and being on the road for Jesus for two years now with only one beloved friend helping me and extremely few people supporting the ministry financially as I continue on caring for the now 4 remaining special needs ministry dogs and preparing to go forth in ministry as the Lord leads me, I am exhausted. I feel like I’ve been in a blender and someone keeps forgetting to turn the blender off!
Just days ago, I heard the devil essentially tell me he will kill me if I tell one more person about Jesus and know the suicidal thoughts I briefly had originated from him.
Is this a spiritual battle? It’s a spiritual war! Am I being tested by God concerning my faith in Him and my love and devotion for Him? I think so!
And what will I do? How will I proceed? I choose to TRUST THE LORD, to LOVE THE LORD, to OBEY THE LORD, to NOT BE STOPPED IN LOVING AND WORSHIPING GOD FOREVER AND IN TELLING THE WORLD ABOUT THE LORD JESUS CHRIST.
God has given me the strength thus far and will continue to do so. He will provide all I need to go forth in life and ministry. He will enable me to live to love and glorify Him and to help people to find and forever follow Him. And He will help me to rest in Him. Oh, resting is virtually impossible for me!
I now have the fewest dogs I have had in over 20 years as I did dog rescue work for decades. It’s me, Jesus, and the four special needs ministry service dogs continuing on the road for Jesus as I do streets ministry and write and publish Gospel tracts, devotionals, and books.
Please, dear friend, pray as you are led!
With love in His love,