by Phyllis Ducey
pfdoriginalartworks



One day I donned my oldest sweats to prepare for the dreaded chore. I had delayed it as long as I could. I had to do it. The poor dog was constantly scratching from her allergies. Oh, they make her shed so bad…it made her miserable and me too. It doubled my housework… When it would get to the point that I must vacuum furniture before we can sit, I know it's bath time.

As I prepare the room for the ordeal, I found myself talking to myself. "Why do I have a dog that has allergies? How did we pick the one that is claustrophobic?" (Not only that, she is the most stubborn dog I have ever owned and she hates water.)

Bath time was never fun. In winter the only place to bathe her was in our 10' by 10' utility room that had a drain in the middle of the floor. Most would think this is amble space to move but not this dog. She would tremble just walking near the room. (This dog was so afraid of being closed in that she would back her way through a 5 foot wide doorway into a room that is 26’ x 18’)

My husband's job was to get her in the room. My job was to administrate what must seemed to her as punishment. Once the door closed she could barely move from her fear. Her heart would pounding so hard I could see it. Panting she looked at me as if I have betrayed her. I could see it in her eyes: “How could I inflict this torment on her?” She trusted me.

While wetting down her fur that naturally repels water, I try to reassure her.
“Honest Freyja, this is for your own good. You really will feel better afterward.”

The whole process wouldn't be so bad if she didn't have such thick fur but she is a Norwegian Elk hound and it takes a good fifteen minutes of hosing her down to get her thoroughly wet. Poor Freyja, she just doesn’t get it. She cowered giving me that pitiful look of betrayal. An additional fifteen minutes is needed to work the shampoo enough to reach her skin to soothe and relieve it. I could see that every minute is painful to her. She struggled to hide in a corner, wedged her way behind a table leg.

I really did not like to do this to her. I knew she was suffering but I also knew when it was done she would feel much better. I tried to tell her this. “It’s going to be alright if you just relax baby-cakes.” Freyja was too wrapped in fear to listen... to0 wrapped in fear to relax.

As I was trying to calm her and steer her from trying to hide behind the table legs, I had my epiphany!! That poor little pathetic creature trying to avoid the inevitable, the one thing that will relieve her discomfort… That is me!

Looking at that wretched soaked dog, I wondered: Am I really any different?

At that time I was going through some really tough times. I was fighting it all the way! I was cowering… shaking… almost blinded by fear. That was me…there I was trying to hide behind table legs or wedge myself into a corner so that I could be invisible. (Like I could be invisible behind a table leg!?)

I too was trembling, growling and complaining to the God who created me… I told Him there must me some mistake, I should not have to go through this. Just like sweet Freyja, I told Him (sometimes still do)that I couldn't deal with it… I could not and would not! I was letting my worry and fear control my actions.

While I was thinking this through, I sat down with my dog. I tried to cradle her even though she smelled like a combination of wet dog hair and Selsom Blue and shed sticky wet hair all over me. I talked to her… or was I talking to myself??

I told her that it will be ok. I told her: "You can’t really understand this but you will feel soooo much better when it’s over. Just trust me, I will only do what will help. The harder you fight this the longer it is going to take. If you could relax and accept it, it will be over sooner."

As I rinsed off Freyja, dried her (that is her favorite part)I knew she could not understand the reason for this bath. She would not relate the relief she would feel later to the torment she endured.

I wondered if I was too focused on the events of the moment to understand that God has a greater plan for me. I wasn't looking to Him in trust or relaxing in His care I was not trusting that these circumstances were allowed by God for my good. Nor was I considering the possibility that they could be administered by Him to heal the wounds within me. That His plan is the best for me. And that if I stood still, followed His lead, I would be healed of the discomforts all this was causing me.

When it was over, I found comfort when I pet my dog's soft fur... seeing her well groomed and free from scratching. It reminded me that though life may at times be painful, God's grooming will soothe the pain. And I enjoy the reminder that God knows why I need to go through trials even though I can't understand.

After that though I hated the task, the dreaded bath day became a blessing to me .

I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow. Jer 31:13


"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11 NIV

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Please take a minute to check out our awesome members of the CAST Team and discover the wonderful items in their shops!







Afghan Hound by RoseThistleArtworks
















Petite pet sweater by Knit2getherInLove











Puppy coasters by delightfuldaisy











Vintage Rowlf figure by Stompz












Plush dachshund
by DogBarks














Doggy bandana by InuInspirations










Pet hair sign by ifrogcrafts














Crayon roll by KiddoKreations

Comments (16)

On August 15, 2010 at 11:56 PM , KippysSoMature said...

simply lovely !! I learn, and learn from you :O) in Him

 
On August 16, 2010 at 1:04 AM , Art and Sew Forth said...

I just gave my two 65 lb dogs-in-law a bath a couple of weeks ago in the bath tub. What a chore indeed! I can so relate to your complaints! But I also relate to your lesson-so good! Thanks! And thanks for including my plushy!

 
On August 16, 2010 at 4:18 AM , new creationz said...

Oh I can so relate. My Jack HATES to be bathed too. But what a wonderful analogy. Once again, thank you Phyllis.

 
On August 16, 2010 at 5:51 AM , Jewels by Trish- Handmade Jewelry- Artisan: Trish said...

What a great analogy!!! We forget sometimes to trust God b/c we, at times, don't like the task He has set for us. I think if we are honest with ourselves, then we know that we all at times have tried to hide behind that table leg! Thanks for sharing & reminding us to embrace our faith!!

 
On August 16, 2010 at 7:32 AM , myeuropeantouch said...

What a beautiful lesson....thank you.
Monika

 
On August 16, 2010 at 10:29 AM , Sue Runyon said...

Thanks once again for putting things into perspective for me on a Monday morning. What a good way to start the work week!

 
On August 16, 2010 at 10:47 AM , MYSAVIOR said...

I don't think I could add another word! I read your post every monday morning and love learning more and more. Thank you so much, Phyllis, for starting my week with the Lord.

♥♥♥
Sue

 
On August 16, 2010 at 12:19 PM , Mulberry Lane Folk Art said...

Lovely post about our loving God's care for us. Thanks for sharing, Phyllis! Love in Christ, Jennifer

 
On August 16, 2010 at 2:26 PM , Anonymous said...

Hello all

I agree with you written a very good text. I think that the subject is not completely exhausted. Waiting for more ...
And by the way see the election of Miss World: http://missvanilla.eu/miss-europe.html

 
On August 16, 2010 at 2:35 PM , sammysgrammy said...

Thank you Phyllis:
a-for being still before the Lord
b-for listening to Him
c-for processing that through your own personal experiences
d-for taking "pen to paper" and serving those wonderful illustrations to your castteam.

How we appreciate it

 
On August 16, 2010 at 7:09 PM , SoapyBlessings said...

Thanks for your share. God never ceases to amaze me. Sometimes I forget the amazement part, then he surprises me, leaving me a bit humbled in the process sometimes.

 
On August 16, 2010 at 10:30 PM , watercolors said...

Phyllis, what a cute, funny and then wonderful comparison of your dogs adventures and relating it to how God worked in your life (and could in ours).

Thank you SO much fro sharing this,
Roxanne

 
On August 16, 2010 at 10:30 PM , watercolors said...

Phyllis, what a cute, funny and then wonderful comparison of your dogs adventures and relating it to how God worked in your life (and could in ours).

Thank you SO much fro sharing this,
Roxanne

 
On August 16, 2010 at 10:30 PM , watercolors said...

Phyllis, what a cute, funny and then wonderful comparison of your dogs adventures and relating it to how God worked in your life (and could in ours).

Thank you SO much fro sharing this,
Roxanne

 
On August 16, 2010 at 10:31 PM , watercolors said...

Phyllis, what a cute, funny and then wonderful comparison of your dogs adventures and relating it to how God worked in your life (and could in ours).

Thank you SO much fro sharing this,
Roxanne

 
On August 17, 2010 at 1:39 PM , Lizzi said...

I always love your posts. Great job as usual!