The Lord always sees us with grace-filled love, even if we're hiding in the hostas...
Today I’m trading posts with Shawnelle Eliasen, the author of Family Grace. So be sure to look for my guest post on Family Grace today! Here's Shawnelle's guest post:
I’m in our yard, and four of my sons are here, too. We’re all captivated by our new boy–a yellow Labrador pup. The day is bright with summer sun and my passel of young males bolts from one end of our fenced area to the next, charging under and around the big maple that stretches over us all.
Rugby, the pup, wags his tail as he prances and pounces. My boys’ hearts are full. I can see it in their smiles. And deep gratitude overwhelms me. In the spring, we lost two Greyhounds within a couple of months. This beautiful puppy has brought fresh life. He’s an answer to prayer.
“Mom, Rugby is learning to fetch,” 9-year-old Gabriel says. He tosses a stuffed ball and Rugby’s on the move.
A few seconds later, our puppy returns to Gabe. The stuffed ball is in his mouth,
and his little tail ticks back-and-forth.
Rugby is a fast learner. We can tell that he knows what’s going on.
We play with the pup for quite a while, all of us taking delight in his antics, and soon our four-legged guy is tired. Rugby wanders over to my row of hostas, roots around with his nose, and steps forward into the lush green.
“Rugby, no!” Gabriel is quick to remind his dog that the hostas are not for rooting. Or sitting.
But Rugby looks back, paws through the big, cool leaves and sits down anyway. He nestles in, the broad leaves covering much of his body. One leaf partially covers his face, too. It seems as though he’s hiding. You can’t see me. But I can see you.
He peers at us from the green.
And as I watch this dear pup, I’m reminded of how we, as humans, are disobedient, too. We sin and sometimes would like to escape the eyes of God. Adam and Eve sinned and hid in the garden.
There are times in my life that I have a hard time coming clean before the Lord. And I’ve talked with others who have struggled to make a decision to follow Christ because they’re afraid that the things they’ve done are just too much.
But the Lord sees us.
He sees us right in the center of our disobedience. Just like we see Rugby, brown eyes shining behind summer-green leaves.
And He meets us with perfect grace.
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John1:9, NIV)
The Lord offers a grace gift of love.
And breadth and length and depth of this love was defined on the cross.
Thank you, Jesus. Because of You, there is no need to hide.
Gabriel trails Rugby, and within a minute my little boy bends low and scoops his puppy from the plant.
“It’s okay. We’ll teach you, little buddy,” Gabe says. “I love you. I’ve got you.” He pulls the pup close to his face and rubs behind the soft, small ears. Rugby snuggles in, under Gabriel’s chin, and then stretches up to cover his cheeks with warm, wet puppy licks.
Gabriel laughs. And the laughter comes from the center of his heart.
Though I want to go to Gabe and Rugby, to wrap my arms around them both, I just stand in the sun and watch. I’m blessed by the warm affection that flows so freely between these blond boys and this little blond dog.
I can’t imagine a more beautiful thing.