Saturday, February 9, 2013

My Walk with Mr. Pip and Resentment

          Hello dearies! I hope this finds each of you well and abounding in the knowledge of Jesus’ love! These past few weeks have been somewhat hard for me as they have been busy, a bit lonely, and a little challenging. Yet, each morning my God’s mercy is new and He faithfully upholds me in His presence. His blessings are unnumbered!

          Yesterday, I put on my walking clothes, and despite the light rain headed out to walk the property’s fence line. I’ve been reading Elizabeth Elliot’s The Mark of a Man and in it she spoke on how often the natural world and experiences we encounter often point to the spiritual world we have a hard time seeing.  I wanted to see this for myself and began to think of all the different analogies I could discover while walking.

          After finishing the first lap around our property I stopped into the house, grabbed a glass of water, and again headed out into the stormy evening. As I passed the garden, I heard an incredibly sad yowl. Mr. Pip, my dear, gray cat, sat curled up on the porch crying for me. And I mean crying! I did not believe such a pitiful sound could be made except from hungry or hurt infants.  J (Can you tell I haven’t had cats for very long?)

          I called to him. “Pip! Come on!” He came running. Eventually he began to come close but seeing the small beagle (a stray that has been hanging around . . . anyone want a cute beagle? Please take him!) Pip jumped up into the near brush pile.

You see, about two months ago our dog, Kimo, attacked Mr. Pippens. And dear Pip hasn’t forgotten nor forgiven. Any dog is an involuntary nemesis to poor Pip. And this timid, whiney beagle was no different.

So I picked up Mr. Pippens and began to walk. What a pitiful threesome we were: A small, eager beagle, a soaked, hissing cat, and a wet, backpack-carrying girl in goulashes.

That’s where the analogy came flooding in. What if Pip was me? Lately, I’ve been struggling with bitterness in my heart. I had my life planned out (as far as I could see) only to have it changed. I’ve tried to forgive in my own power yet anger and resentment still floods in. I obviously have not forgotten.

Sure, Pip needs to remember that dogs could be harmful.  It is wise to gain lessons from past hurts and mistakes. However, Pip looked silly running away from a timid beagle; this dog would not hurt him for anything. So we also look foolish when we continue to lash out on those we think will hurt us.

Pip’s not forgiving was hindering his journey. We had a goal: to make it around the fence line once more. Yet, his fear and resentment was holding him back. So it is with us. We are on a journey and holding grudges will hinder our walk, both physically and spiritually. We will never run the race as we were supposed to if we choose to hold onto past offences.

So there we were: a girl, a dog, and a cat. I’m sure I looked the most peculiar as I talked over my new learnings with Pip who sat trustingly in my arms. And then that’s where the most beautiful comparison came from.

Even when we’re bitter and allow our lack of forgiveness to hinder our race, our journey, Jesus never leaves us. In fact, He carries us through those hard times. These past few weeks when I thought I was carrying my burden of hurt alone Jesus was right there carrying me. He knew that I would not be able to walk on in my own strength so, in love, He has carried me. How beautiful! How true!

I don’t want to carry around the heavy load of disappointment; I do not want my walk in life to be hindered by my refusal to obey Christ and forgive. And I am so thankful that the power that raised Jesus up from His grave clothes is now in me. By God’s grace and power we can lay down the heavy burden of bitterness.

Jesus is the way,


“Yes in me, in me He dwelleth,
I in him and He in me.
And my empty soul He filleth
Now and through eternity.”

-         Horatio Bonar
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