To Bark or Not to Bark



Keyra cocks her head, surprised at my angry voice. I’m sure in her mind seven AM is a perfectly good time to bark at the outside world. Rephrased, when isn’t it a good time to bark? And once she gets going, everything makes her bark. A boy wearing a backpack. A mother pushing a stroller.  An old man carrying a bag of groceries. A squirrel. And of course, my son’s friends—the worst enemies of all aside from the mailman. She will only tolerate guests if they stay seated. Heaven forbid they stand up or walk down the hall; she’ll bark and jump on the ankles of the largest visitors. She only nipped once. Or twice…and both times the same friend. She hates him with a doggy passion. 

She’s a dog on a mission—to see how much food she can find or steal. She can’t bury the pizza crust she snatches, so she hides her stash in laundry piles. I’ve come close to washing a hamburger bun and dog biscuits. 

Last week, a whole stick of butter mysteriously vanished from the table. Jordan found the mushy stick in her room the next morning in a pile of toys, but Keyra was there. She grabbed it and ran. We still haven’t found the new spot she hid it. By now it would be a greasy puddle if she hasn’t eaten it. 

She’s mischievous, a troublemaker at heart, but we love her.

God must see us in the same way. We do what we know is wrong; we are intolerant, controlling, even bark sometimes, yet He loves us. We can’t hide from Him; He sees all our hiding spots. If we let Him into our lives, He’ll help us clean our messes and find joy. He’ll even take us for a walk in His light.


Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires, but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.

Romans 8:5-6 (NIV)



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