Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Bear Scare

I left work on the Moorhead campus, Tuesday, and headed straight for the pond. Because that meant the dogs would not be with me, I had some funny feelings about that, like I was cheating on them or something. Furthermore, I had felt bad all day because of what happened the day before. 

Monday, I took the dogs like I always do. When we got near the pond, I let the them out of the truck like I always do. They were excited like they always are. We re-started towards the pond like we always do. I ran over one of the dogs like we never do.

Yeah, it happened. 

We had gone a little way, fifty yards, a hundred, so he had to be moving. I felt the front tire of the truck go over something, heard a dog yelp, and saw Bear get off the asphalt and limp three-legged to the side of the road and lie down. 

There are no words for how I felt. 

I jumped out, ran to him, looked him over. His back left leg was the one he didn't put down. Nothing was obviously broken but he had some road rash. I picked him up, carried him to the truck, and placed him on the back seat. I got Pee Wee and we headed towards the vet's. 

On the way, I thought about the ending of the Gospel of Mark. "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." That means Bear is included. "And these signs shall follow them that believe . . . they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover." I reached back and laid my right hand on Bear's head and began to quote this passage while I prayed. After a minute or two, Bear stood up in the back seat and put weight on his left leg. Don't tell me God is not real.

The plan was to take Pee Wee home and then get Bear to the hospital. Since Bear started perking up as we got closer to home, and since we already owe the vet a huge sum of money, I said to myself, If he gets out of the truck and walks to the back yard, I will take it that God has truly touched him.

He climbed out and walked, slowly, but he walked with all four legs, to the back yard. I thanked God, but had little desire to swim so I stayed home and hung out in the back yard so I could keep and eye on him. He was obviously sore and stiff but apparently OK.

Tuesday I thought about him all day. I toggled back and forth between rejoicing and feeling terrible. He was under the outbuilding before I went to work so we don't know how he was. Even though it was an accident, I felt guilty while feeling thankful to God at the same time. Penny texted me at lunch and said he was out and moving gingerly. 

I lifted weights, which I needed to do anyway, and it also kept me in the back yard. Bear was looking at me suspiciously. That tears my heart. Surely he doesn't think I hurt him. Will he ever want to get in the truck with me again? I had a little feist once that went with me almost everywhere. One fall day, we took a long run in Carroll County when the temperature was high. She got a bit overheated and barely made it in. The next time I cranked my auto, instead of running for the fence to go with me, she ran and hid. The pain that caused me was immense. She never went with me again.

Having missed lifting last week, I noticed a discernible drop in my strength. I couldn't hold the six reps at 140 on the bench. I need to turn that around. There is time.

Thank you, Jesus for touching Bear. Thank you for putting him into our lives. We love him and want his best. Continue to bless him and keep us safe when we go to the pond. Amen.