Drawing Closer
~~~By Janet Lyn~~~
Saturday, March 27, 2010

I learn so much from my Best Dog Bella.

This morning, as she does most every morning and every evening, Bella made it very clear she wanted time with me. Undivided time. With my full attention.

Oh, sure, she likes to play outside. My Best Dog Bella’s a sweet, joyful 45-pound German Shepherd-mix rescue dog. She LIVES for playing outside. Her whole body comes alive when she hears my 3 whispered words, “Wanna go OUTSIDE?”

She likes to eat. Whenever she can. She likes to nap. As often as possible. Who doesn’t?

But once she’s played outside, eaten and napped, she wants one thing: Time With Me.

She will do whatever it takes to get my attention and get her undivided time with me.

If I’m writing or otherwise “working” on my laptop computer (aka tweeting), Bella will push her way up into my lap.

She used to simply lay her sweet head on my lap while my laptop rested on my knee. Now she pushes her way up into my lap, lays her sweet head on my lap and then proceeds to push her sweet head right on top of the computer keyboard.

Bella is very persistent when she wants time with me. I like that. How can I help but love her?

This morning, she tried a different tactic. I’ve seen it before so I knew what was coming.

I was sitting on my bed, drinking coffee and typing away on my laptop computer.

Bella got down at the end of the bed and looked at me with those sweet, adoring, imploring eyes and started crawling on her belly an inch at a time toward me.

Usually I reach out right away and pet her head and massage her back and scratch behind her ears, which is what she wants in addition to time with me.

But this morning, since I knew what was coming, I decided to wait and watch for a change.

My Bella was surprised but she was not to be deterred.

She looked up at me, batting those big beautiful brown eyes at me, and inched a little closer, scooting on her belly toward me.

Still I waited.

So Bella scooted and crawled an inch at a time until we were very nearly face to face. Actually, at that point, she was literally pushing her face into my left hand and looking up at me.

At that point, she had my full attention. She was focused on me. I was focused on her.

She knew I couldn’t resist such unabashed love and adoration. Not to mention her sheer audacity, unbridled enthusiasm, clear hope and dogged perseverance. (pun intended)

And believe me, the object of my affection ~ known alternately as Bella, Love Bug and/or Loco Bella ~ was rewarded lavishly for her efforts to get close to me.

As I gazed upon my Best Dog Bella, laying contentedly on the blanket on my lap as I stroked her forehead and scratched her head behind her ears, I thought about how much the scene reminded me of us and God.

We get so busy sometimes with the basics of life and more. Playing outside. Eating. Napping. And so much more.

What our hearts and souls really long for, though, is time alone with God. Undivided, precious time to love on God and feel His love in return.

Once we’re done with all the things that keep us so busy, so often we look up at God and realize that’s where we really want to be. We want to be near Him.

So we look at Him and inch closer, keeping our eyes on Him, wondering the whole time if He’s really paying attention to us.

We could settle for a far-off glance from God, but our hearts won’t let us.

So we draw closer.

We could settle for an outstretched hand reaching for us at a distance still. But again, our love-filled hearts won’t settle for anything less than nearness to God, so near we can feel His touch.

So we draw even closer.

Along the way, if our love is strong and/or our need is great enough, we push aside any distractions that are keeping us from undivided time with the One we love.

We keep drawing closer until finally we are nearly face-to-face.

Love draws us closer. Unconditional love. Passionate love. Irresistible love.

I don’t know about you, but my heart wants to be close enough to see God’s smile, to feel His love, to know He’s holding me, to feel His touch.

I want to get to the place where I know nothing is standing between us. The place where I know He is focused on me and I am focused on Him.

After all, I couldn’t resist my Best Dog Bella’s unabashed love and adoration.

How much more so must God’s heart leap for joy when He sees us approach Him with unabashed love and adoration.

Not to mention sheer audacity, unbridled enthusiasm, clear hope and dogged perseverance.

The kind of perseverance learned from a very sweet and loving dog.
My Bella.

(c) March 2010 / By Janet Lyn