Tiglath-pileser, the dog, not the ancient Assyrian emperor (745-727 BC), sleeps in our bedroom with us. Because his collar has dog tags (surprise!), we take off his collar at night so that every time he shakes his head it doesn’t wake us up. We say that our naked, collar-less dog is wearing his “pajamas”.
But Tig likes wearing his collar. Embarrassingly for him, sometimes he’s still wearing his pajamas at noon. He’s willing to forgo his collar at night, but wherever he is in the house in the morning if he hears his dog tags jingle, he’ll coming running because he’d much rather not go around in his pajamas.
A few mornings ago, as I was putting on Tig’s collar, Shannon was watching and said, “With this collar I thee own”. I thought, “That works.”
Tig likes his collar because it means we own him, it connects him to us. Like Wallace says to Gromit as he puts on the dog’s new collar, “It looks like somebody owns you.” (You have to say that while waving both hands sideways.) Recently, after Shannon came back from being gone for a few days, Tig wouldn’t leave her side.
Dogs are not only our best friend, but they have profound spiritual lessons to teach us about our relationship with God. They like the symbol of their connection to their master and they love to be with their master. They don’t want independence, and would certainly never declare it.
For me, it’s hard to find time to spend with God, and I love my independence. I need to be more canine.
What spiritual lessons do your pets teach you?