My {Dad} – Animal Lover

I asked my three-year old daughter what is something that my dad has taught her.

She said, and I quote, “to be kind, to not kill ants, to not kill cockroaches, and to be nice to princesses.”

Well, I’d have to disagree with her on the cockroach part… but needless to say, that’s what she believes she has learned (darn!)

What I realized, however, is how she has come to learn to be kind to God’s creatures (apparently no matter how vile or disgusting).

That she is a lover of all animals… just like my daddy.

Another beautiful lesson… in caring for the creature we’ve been entrusted with.

This is Daisy. She was “therapy” for Jeremy and I when his mom passed away… she felt as much like a friend or family member as an animal can. And we couldn’t bring her to Germany. Oh, how heart-wrenching those final days were! We all cried… and months later, my children still ask about her, miss her, want to go visit her. Understandably. Fortunately, we were able to find her the PERFECT home, only two days before we had to leave. Yes, my daddy’s love is not limited to people… nor is ours.

I have almost always had a pet in my life… fish, birds, rats, mice, hamsters, cats, dogs, rabbits… I love animals.

Confession: I love animals because my dad loves them.

Well, and because most of them are pretty cute. 🙂

But really… how could I truly love without first seeing what love looks like? Left to my own devices… who knows what I would believe about my little furry (or scaly or feathery) friends. Instead, because of my dad’s tenderness toward all loving things… I am able to love them as well.

I see them as a gift.

Creatures entrusted to humanity… for our own good and for theirs.

We, as humans, have not always lived this job well. And sometimes, we live it too well.

Sometimes our love for animals gets confused… and to be truthful, far more about our own personal needs than the needs of the animal… or other humans.

To find that healthy balance between nurturing and caring for these creatures with whom we share time on planet earth… without idolizing them.

Betraying both our duty to them and our duty to God to care for them.

Except to cockroaches, flies, and mosquitoes.

*sigh*

Though perhaps my father would disagree with me on that point.

Even to the lowliest of creatures… respect and stewardship.

But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.

Job 12:7-10

To learn more about 31 Days in 2012 or view other 31 Dayers blogs, click here.

I’m spending 31 days writing about my confessions and the lessons {Dad} has taught me. This is day 7 of 31 Days in 2012.

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