Published Sunday, April 22, 2012

Who cares?

I was having a pretty rough day. I dared take a tally just after morning coffee.

It began with dropping off my precious pup Hoover for the removal of a cancerous tumor and continued with a visit to an auto repair shop. I realized almost too late that I had to pick up our taxes from our CPA. On top of all this there was something disgusting in the fridge and it wasn’t even trash day.

I wasn’t at the writhing-in-self-pity level, but I was certainly frustrated and rather “done” with having so many issues before 10 a.m.

It would be the visit to the auto repair that turned my day around.

I had just dropped Hoover off and drove into the next town to have my car checked out due to a strange noise coming from the I’m-not-sure-where place.

I waited on a bench outside, contemplating things like costs of dog surgery, car repair and the IRS. A little elderly Boston Terrier walked up. She looked well cared for, was clean and had a wide pink collar with no tags. It was soon discovered that she was a stray. The guys at the auto shop were concerned about her and each of us tried to coax her close enough to catch her.

We were unsuccessful and by the time I left she had walked a good distance away. I tried once more but she ran from me and I found myself looking at her in my rear view mirror. She stood there watching as I drove away. I gazed at her reflection in my mirror and prayed that God would help her find her people or help her people find her. It was all I could do.

By late afternoon I had to return to the area within a mile of the auto repair shop. I parked in front of a printing business and would never have even noticed the door if not for a handmade sign taped on the glass. The photo of a Boston Terrier was centered on the page with all the information relative to contacting the owner. “11 years old. Wide pink collar. Needs her meds.” I couldn’t dial the phone fast enough.

While I was waiting for the owner to call me back I contacted the guys at the auto shop, hoping in the hours that had passed they would have seen the dog again. Sure enough, they had her tied up in the shade, a bowl of water beside her. The owner was as grateful as she could be and even called me afterward once she picked up her pup and was on her way back home.

It was then I remembered my prayer. I thought of the events of the day. Contacting that particular car repair shop was a fluke. I was actually trying to locate another one entirely. I drove to the location but they were out of business. The one I called was across the highway so I decided to go ahead to see them. Returning later in the day almost didn’t happen. I was so done with my day that I wanted to cancel but it was a doctor’s appointment and since they would have charged me I decided to go on. Had I not parked in that exact space I am sure I would never have seen the notice. When I saw the notice, it had been on the door less than 15 minutes. Had I been just a few minutes earlier and it would not have been there. Considering the fact that the old dog had to cross a busy four lane divided highway, there was a certain grace in how everything came together.

I thought of that little dog in my rear view mirror and how all I could do was pray for her. Little did I know that God would use me to find her people and use her to remind me of His divine grace. Luke 12:24 came to mind. “Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!”

I was having a pretty rough day until I remembered that no matter what I may experience, God cares. He cared enough for a little old dog to reunite her with her owner and I know He cares enough for me to keep me in his arms. All I needed was just a sweet little four-legged reminder. The rest of my day? Well, it was pretty wonderful.

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Kathy Bohannon is a Georgia Press Association award winner and regular contributor to the Newnan Times-Herald. Kathy’s book “Gardens of Savannah” will be on bookshelves in May 2012.

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