As my husband and I stood outside a friend’s glass storm door, her two little dogs stood on the inside. Both were barking non-stop, but one seemed particularly ferocious, so much so that I feared he’d bite us even as our friend tried to shush her dogs and shoo them away from the door so we could step inside.
|My husband used his cell phone to take this photo of Duffy and me.|
A while after I’d seated myself on the sofa, the ferocious dog (Duffy) jumped up and sat quietly beside me for over an hour, listening to the conversation in the room. As I stroked his back and rubbed his silky ears, he dozed off—totally relaxed. Once he sensed he could trust me, what a difference that made in his behavior!
That experience helped me realize this spiritual truth: Life becomes far less stressful when we learn we can trust God. Only then will we relax in His presence and just let Him love us. Only then do we stop yipping and yapping and wearing ourselves out, feeling as if our well-being depends solely on us. Only when we fully trust Him do we, in effect, curl up in His presence and receive the love and the peace we've been struggling to obtain in our own strength.
For thus says the LORD GOD...
In returning [repentance] and rest you shall be saved;
in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.
Isaiah 30:15, ESV