Monday, March 3, 2014


Being sprayed by a skunk is not something on my wish list. Asia, my lab shepherd mix, seems to be a magnet for skunks, as she has been sprayed twice this winter. As I stared down at her this evening, frustrated and alone, I knew I had no choice but to act. My options limited, I prepared to handle my 70# dog on my own. I shooed her off the porch in frustration, hoping she would just stay in the yard, but I think her already sad heart was broken, and she darted into the dark.

Asia is a pure black dog, and didn't come when I called. There is an acre of dark here, and so I presumed she was just hiding from me... I sped to the store to get my chemistry gear, the best ingredients you can buy to combat skunk.

Meanwhile, at my neighbors house... Asia appeared out of the dark, and I was gone.

I returned, not knowing what had transpired. I setup my plan for caring for her outside, and called and called... finally walking around in the dark with my flashlight and the leash. She had to be out there somewhere as the whole neighborhood was barking.

My neighbor came outside, "I have your dog!"


I sped toward her, assuming she would be in the garage, but no, she was in her house! My neighbor smelled her, saw that I was gone, and immediately took her into her house and bathed her. This mountain which I was preparing to face had already been stood down.


So what does bravery look like? I have to say it looks a lot like my neighbor tonight. My neighbor acted courageously against an obstacle that wasn't even hers to face. I want to say I am brave, but most often I'm the woman frustrated at the situation...

Bravery isn't something we hear much of these days, except in random sound bites and stolen bits off the web. But its something I believe we are called to, something we can be, no matter the circumstance.

In fact, as I was driving back from the store, I felt pretty brave. I was upset but I didn't sit down and cry, I was angry but didn't just give up. I chose to tackle the situation...

So I suppose bravery can even come from the frustrated but acting right anyway.

What a difference in the heart, though. My neighbor, without a thought, had bravery in her heart...


I don't have an answer for growing in bravery, except this. There is a passage in the bible, the book of Hebrews, which describes a race. I believe we are in a race, to some degree, each of us. I've heard life described as a marathon, which to me sounds like a pretty accurate description! In this passage, we are reminded to fix our eyes NOT on the situation, and NOT on the people around us, but on the goal, the prize. The goal and prize of the christian life is christ-like-ness...  Becoming in our heart and character more and more like Christ, so when we finish our race, we join him at the finish line.


Meanwhile, tonight in my neighborhood, I am preparing a prize for my awesome neighbor, because she met a goal that she wasn't even anticipating!  And I hope I  learn from her example as I continue on in my marathon, and continue to grow in bravery...

1 comment:

  1. Makes me happy! :) I keep thinking about how much we can bless other people without even realizing it. Someone paid for my dinner at a restaurant recently and it was on the worst day of Lexi's health we have had in months. It meant so much more than they knew. I love being reminded of the good in this world! :)