God, Dogs, and Unconditional Love   2 comments

From a blog I follow by David Anderson:

On the Monday following the terrorist rampage in Orlando, a dozen Golden Retrievers showed up in the Disney city. They were part of the K-9 Comfort Dogs team, a ministry run by Lutheran Church Charities. The dogs had come to give the kind of love and comfort that come only from a furry friend.

There was a time when bringing in dogs to care for the emotional needs of the traumatized would have seemed odd. But now it’s common. K-9 Comfort Dogs came to the emotional rescue after the Boston Marathon bombing, after the Sandy Hook shootings. “We’ve had a lot of people here that start petting the dog, and they break out crying,” said Tim Hetzner, president of the charity. “Dogs show unconditional love.”

…. Our love comes with a lot of conditions, a lot of strings. It doesn’t mean we’re bad people, it just means we’re human. We know that mom or dad love us, but they love us more when we visit more often, stay longer and discipline the kids a little more. Same with husbands and wives. There’s a baseline love, but more can be earned in all the ways we know.

Yet the one thing every soul seeks is simply that unconditional love, where there is nothing to be earned. So when I read stories about Golden Retrievers being flown in to offer stringless love to grieving humans, I can’t tell whether that’s a beautiful thing (how we’ve finally understood the emotional and spiritual capacity of our pets) or whether we have outsourced our love needs to animals because we can’t find a way to do it ourselves.

[Read the full text here]

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Posted June 20, 2016 by janathangrace in Reading

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2 responses to “God, Dogs, and Unconditional Love

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  1. Thanks for the good thoughts on love, brother.

    I really like the expression, “God loves us just the way we are… and thankfully He loves us too much to leave us that way.” It’s great to know His love isn’t conditioned on our behavior, but that He knows imminently what is for our best and He helps us get there. May we love one another more and more with God’s kind of love.

    For years I’ve often signed off with Philippians 1:9-11, because I have adopted Paul’s prayer – “And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you to determine what is best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless, having produced the harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.”

    • I love that in those verses the basis of righteousness is love (love is the fulfillment of the law). How often we have divorced the two as though righteousness is possible without the basis of love, when it is clearly evident that righteousness that comes from some other grounding than love is actually not righteousness, but a sad imitation (sounding brass and tinkling cymbal).

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