Saving Sunshine—Part 2

15 Aug

Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest, they don’t have storerooms or barns, but God feeds them. And you are worth much more than birds . . . Consider how the lilies grow; they don’t work or make clothes for themselves. But I tell you that even Solomon with his riches was not dressed as beautifully as one of these flowers (Luke 12:24, 27 NCV).

God says pay attention to His creation; we can learn something.

Months ago, I began asking God if I should get another dog after my little Sunshine died. I got on rescue websites and even made a call or two about specific dogs. In every case, someone else adopted the dog. Maybe I wasn’t supposed to adopt. My busy schedule combined with my husband’s reservations caused me to have second thoughts. Then I realized that three of the four local rescue shelters kept dogs alive; the fourth euthanized them after one week. I couldn’t save them all, but I could save one.

I still had my list of preferences: female, small, doesn’t shed. I went back to the Humane Society website and found Bambi who met my first three “qualifications.” I called; she hadn’t been adopted. When I got to the shelter (25 miles from home), she wasn’t there.

“She’s been taken to another shelter,” the rescue worker told me, “but I can give you that number.”
“No thank you. The point is not to have a particular dog, but to save a life.”
“You’re welcome to walk around and see if there is another dog you might want.”

So I found the cages marked FEMALE and walked up and down the aisles asking God to lead me to “my” dog. Nothing. Disappointed, I returned to the office.

“Did you find a dog?”
“Not this time. I was hoping for a small female, maybe part Shish Tzu.”
“Did you look at number 21? She’s a Shish Tzu-terrier mix.”
“I thought that row was males.”
“They’re next to the males.”

I went back to #21. A small dog put her nose against her cell and licked my fingers. Her entire backend wagged in welcome. She never barked once, though surrounding dogs howled, barked, and whined. I let the workers know I’d be praying about #21.

The next afternoon I went back to see #21 without stopping in the office.
She was gone!

Tears of disappointment surprised me. Surely, I hadn’t formed an attachment so quickly. I ran back to the office as I dried my eyes and put on a calm exterior.
“Number 21 wasn’t there,” I explained.
“Oh, she’s in the TV room.”
“Do dogs watch TV?” (I know. Brilliant response.)
(Smiling) “No. We were making a TV spot to encourage her adoption.”
Huge relief. “Could I meet her one-on-one?”
We got acquainted in the penned patio. Number 21 was a bit rambunctious and covered with bloody ticks and scabs—but she stole my heart.

“I think I want to adopt her. By the way, what’s her name?”
“ Sunshine.”
“Are you kidding?”
“No, that’s her name . . . Are you going to cry?” (Obviously, a rhetorical question)
“Sunshine was my dog’s name; she died a few months ago.
I signed the paper work and wrote a check.

So God made the wild animals, the tame animals, and all the small crawling animals to produce more of their own kind. God saw that this was good (Genesis 1:25 NCV).

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