Job 1:21b – The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. (NKJV)
Sometimes, the Lord does a miracle just to show that He loves us. One of those miracles was the life of a newborn puppy. He was very large and got stuck in the birth canal. His water sack had broken early on, so he was encased in just membrane for over an hour as we worked hard to extricate him, to no avail. It became clear that we could not deliver him naturally, and we needed to get to the vet, but it was the middle of the night, and we were forty-five minutes from the emergency clinic. As I made the long drive with my little girl howling in the back, I cried and prayed. I had received word just a few hours earlier (in the midst of the delivery) that my sister had passed away that day, and I was completely emotionally raw. For fifteen years, she had been battling cancer of the breast, the other breast, bone, brain, and then liver. My prayer was simple: “Lord, I cannot take any more death today. Please, please preserve the life of this little one.” I had the strangest sense of peace come over me, and I arrived at the clinic feeling assured that the pup would be okay.
The vet was sorry to inform me that the pup was not okay. From what they could tell, he was already dead. Rather than C-section for a dead pup, removal by forceps was recommended, and I was asked to leave the room, as he would most likely come out in pieces, given his presentation. I insisted on staying, certain that they were wrong. Amazingly, the pup did come out intact on the first good hard yank, but he was cold, dark grey-blue, and without any vital signs. They worked to resuscitate him, clearing his airways, shaking him down and applying adrenaline, but they were unable to get him breathing or get a heartbeat. After doing all they could, they packed his body in a little cardboard box and sent us on our way.
Once home, I put the pup with his mother under a heat lamp, lay down beside them, and fell asleep. When I awoke hours later, the pup was alive and well, stretching, yawning, and nursing. Needless to say, the vet was shocked and stunned when I brought him back for a checkup! Our little miracle boy has grown to be not only healthy in every way, but the sweetest, most loyal dog that I’ve ever had.
I believe that this miracle was not a coincidence, but a legitimate way that God chose to show Himself and His love when I needed it badly. I also believe that God cares for all creation and that animals do have a place in God’s plan for man. However, I don’t know why God saved that pup and not my sister, for whom I’d prayed for years, or hadn’t healed my children, who both continue to suffer with mental illness and addictions, or stepped in on any number of other extremely difficult situations. But I’m a person of simple faith, aware that we live in a fallen world in fragile bodies that aren’t intended to last forever. I know that we’re just passing through, and I am thankful for God’s presence and help along life’s way, and content to let God be God.
Prayer: Lord, Your ways are a mystery to us, as we cannot see life and its events from Your vantage point, and we cannot know all that You know. Help us to cling to our belief that You are wise, loving, kind, and good in all that You do. Amen.
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada