God looked upon the animals and creatures He had made and smiled. For He knew how much help, fascination, and joy they would bring his children. Yet, one more was needed. An animal capable of both strength and gentleness. Intelligence and playfulness. Who could come in many different shapes, sizes, and temperaments, but who would share a common devotion to His children. 

So God made a dog. 

He needed an animal able to jump and shout and wiggle every time his children walk into a room—whether returning from a vacation, a long day of work, or simply from another room. He needed an animal whose exuberance would make His children feel as special as they are to Him. One whose slobbery kisses and excited jumps would lift His children’s hearts and make them smile—even if they left muddy paw-prints on their human’s brand new jeans. 

So God made a dog. 

He needed an animal who would help His children not take themselves too seriously.

One unafraid to jump on their human’s lap while they are on important video calls. One who is undeterred by a closed bathroom door, freshly mopped floors, or a white duvet cover. And one who is completely unconcerned about licking, scratching, or relieving themselves in front of an audience. 

So God made a dog. 

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He needed an animal who could help His children be more active—whether they wanted to or not. An animal intelligent enough to bring them a leash, their shoes, and lead them to the door, but oblivious enough to have no understanding of their human’s need for caffeine, a raincoat, or pants. An animal able to interrupt their human’s work, by bringing a parade of items from the laundry basket, the coffee table, and the trash until their human looks up from the screen and pays attention to them.

So God made a dog. 

He needed an animal capable of sounding like a ferocious protector to alert His children to approaching visitors—but who will roll over and offer a friendly visitor their belly for a rub. One who can chase off an intruder with a snarl, but then lie quietly next to a sleeping child with his own paws up in surrender. One who can make their human feel protected, but whose daily needs for food, water, shelter, and companionship, can bring grounding and structure to their human’s life when the world starts to feel unsteady. 

So God made a dog. 

He wanted to give His anxious children a dependable companion. One capable of sitting with them in the midst of a storm—whose steady breath and strong heartbeat can help ground them till the storm passes. He wanted to give His lonely children a faithful companion who is always willing to listen and always happy to stay close. And He wanted to give his highly active children a playful companion. One who can go from sound asleep to the back door with a ball in his mouth in 2.2 seconds. An energetic playmate able to go for long walks, catch frisbees, and who will never grow tired of fetch. 

So God made a dog. 

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And because God knew that sometimes His children need extra help, He needed an animal capable of learning special skills and honing the unique abilities he wove into their DNA.

He needed an animal capable of finding lost people, detecting invisible things, retrieving items, and guiding his children as they walk. He needed an animal capable of blocking everything else out in order to focus on their task—helping His children. And in doing so could stir His children’s hearts to remember the God that delights in helping them.  

So God made a dog. 

God looked upon all the animals and creatures He had made and said, “I will make a loyal, faithful, playful, strong, intelligent, and devoted animal to love my children well—and to show them a glimpse of my own heart.”  

And so God made a dog. 

Jennifer Bleakley

Jen Bleakley is the author of several animal-themed books including Joey—how a blind horse helped others learn to see, and Pawverbs—inspiring stories for the animal lover’s heart. She firmly believes that animals have much to teach us  about ourselves, each other, and about God—but in order to learn from them we first must PAWS and pay attention (she also really loves a good pun!) Jen lives in Raleigh, NC with her husband, Darrell, their two teenagers, and a menagerie of pets—which includes a very needy golden retriever named Gracie.You can connect with her online at jenniferbleakley.com or on social media @jenbleakley