The Midnight Mistake

About a year ago, Garrett and I were a awoken by a loud crash. At first, we feared the worst, however, we assured ourselves that it was just Stastny playing with a box downstairs.  Still groggy, the Sandman lured us to back to Sleepy Town.  When we got up the next morning and headed into our living room, we were treated to the sight of a knocked over flower pot with the plant and dirt all over our rug.

Forgetting that Stastny is a dog, we asked her why she did it and we told her that we were disappointed in her. Garrett pointed her nose in the dirt and said “Bad dog!” Stastny knew that she was in trouble and remained quiet the whole morning sequestered in her crate. When she finally came out, we reminded her of our disappointment in her. As a matter of fact, every time she made contact with us that day, we made some reference to her bad behavior.

Later on, I could feel God asking me what the difference between how He handles our ill behavior or bad choices versus how Garrett and I treated Stastny. The difference can be summed up in one word: GRACE. God extends grace to us and is quick to forgive our mistakes, but as humans, we struggle with letting go and forgiving people who hurt us.

The question that comes to my heart is, why is it that God forgives us and offers grace, but we who strive to be like Him hold on to the memory of the wrong? God taught me that while a reprimand may be okay, we should not assume His role in judging.

Once again, as our good friend tells us, “Let God be God. All you can do is your part.”

Our New Hairy Addition to Our Family

In March, Garrett and I decided to celebrate our two-year anniversary by going to Olive Garden up in Orange, a spot we used to go to when dating. Remember, that calling I felt for getting Stastny? Well, it happened again.  Garrett had been talking about wanting another dog to add to our family and for a while I was not too keen on the idea. God shifted my heart while we drove to Olive Garden.  I asked Garrett if he would like to take a detour and visit the old pet store we used to go to and play with the dogs who are lonely. Yes, I had an idea of what I was getting myself into…

It was love at first sight.  Garrett saw this funny looking puppy who won him over the moment he began to play with her. It didn’t take long for my heart to melt as well. Like most good things, there were some obstacles in our way of bundling her up and taking her home. First, they would not hold her overnight. Second, she cost a pretty penny. Third, we did not know if our dog trainer would approve of her getting along with Stastny. Lastly, we didn’t know if Stasnty would want a sister. We had decided to pray in four fleeces if it be God’s will for us to get her: the finances work out, our dog trainer letting us know that the puppy would be okay with Stasny, our fury friend to be there the next day, and for Stastny to take to her.

Drum roll please…our dog trainer (amazing), Vladae Roytapel, called us back within 5 minutes on a Friday night and gave us a green light. God provided for us financially. Two fleeces down, two to go. We couldn’t sleep at all that night. Thoughts kept buzzing in our heads, worrying about whether she was still there and if she would be a good match with Stastny? Should we have consulted our parents first?

We got up at the unheard of hour of 7 am on a Saturday morning and packed up Stastny and a few puppy items on a mission that would forever change our lives. Our hearts were racing faster than the cars on the freeway. We kept wondering if we were too late. Finally, we got there! Part one of the mission was accomplished. We were there early waiting for the pet store to open. When the doors opened and we raced to the back where she had been the night before. Were we too late? NO! She was there. Only one more fleece to go, but this was a big one, would Stastny and our fury friend get along. Stastny and the little one were placed in a room together with a lot of toys. The little one kept jumping on her and biting her. Stastny gently wrestled with her and it was there that their lifelong friendship began. Mission accomplished!

The funny part was, that Garrett and I always consult our parents before making big decisions, but in this case we decided to be rebels  and make the decision on our own. Our parents immediately took to our little one, named Isabel, which means God’s promise. We felt the name was fitting because she was our 2nd year anniversary gift to one another and proof of God’s promise to us.