Yep, I have NEW Friends... Officer Steve and Reese Witherspoon!
She was wearing a pink sweater trotting along the road when I noticed her! Sweet Reese... "Where are your owners?" I said to myself inside my car leaving Holland, Michigan, where I was speaking a Women's Retreat Saturday!
I had been gone from home for about 3 1/2 weeks leading up to this, so needless to say I was SOOO happy to be getting back to HOME on Saturday!!!
Well, plans changed when I saw this face!
I immediately noticed that this tiny, pink sweater wearing Chihuahua was walking on the sidewalk by herself. I parked the car in the middle of the road when I realized something had to be done. A bus honked at me, and cars drove right past, but the last thing I wanted was to see this tiny pup be hit by a car! I motioned for them to go around as I called to her. She jumped onto the railroad tracks and started running!
"Gosh, Come ON!" I yelled.
But she ran faster, and I chased her! As I ran down railroad tracks, I quickly realized that my car was still running! I was wearing a dress, blazer, and brown (NON) winter boots from speaking that morning/afternoon! I must have looked crazy clapping my hands, and yelling for her!
I ran back to my car, jumped in and followed her down the tracks. I parked my car behind a Vacuum Cleaner Store that was closed, and walked in thigh high snow to her... she continued to run into the woods along a stream near the Hope College Soccer Fields!
The smallest pup, who is literally the size of Mason and Milo's face, was shivering, soooo very skinny, and clearly scared. I could not get that close as she continued to snarl at me with each step I took. I have never been bitten by a dog, but I did not want that to happen by a stray dog wearing a pink sweater!
I ran back to my car to turn it off, grab a towel, my phone, and a granola bar.
As I walked back she snarled again. I decided pretty quickly we needed to become friends if this was going to work out! So what better way to be friends with someone than to name them! The only thing I could think of was Hope (obvi), Mabel (ya know in case I brought her home she needed an M name), and the dog from Legally Blonde! Haha, Reese Witherspoon it is!
I called the Humane Society, and they directed me to Animal Control. They said they would send someone out to help because we were by the railroad tracks... Hooray! I told them I could not pick her up because I thought she might bite me, and about how I decided in order for anyone to get her we had to be friends. The dispatcher responded with, "Good Luck!" Haha!
I sat there... In the snow... and told Reese about my life! I told her about Mason and Milo, and how much I missed them! I told her I knew she was missed. I broke apart the granola bar, and at first as I threw them her direction she looked uninterested... until she started to smell the peanuts. It was then she warmed up, and began to eat. I still had to keep my distance because any time I would get a little closer she would snarl.
I sat in the snow, in a dress, for about 45 minutes to an hour. We waited for help together!
The police car drove around one time, but did not see us. I called back to tell Animal Control he had passed us. Man, I decided in that moment I would be the WORST on a desert island! Haha! (that's a story for a different day!)
The Officer pulled back around, and called to me when he got out of his car, "You must really love dogs!" Haha, UNDERSTATEMENT of the Century Sir!!!
"What is your name?" I asked as he got closer.
"Officer Steve," he replied.
"Do you like dogs Officer Steve?" I asked.
"Oh yeah, I have had a hard morning so I am happy to be helping her!" he responded.
Officer Steve and I worked at getting tiny Reese Witherspoon to trust us. I ran back to my car to get another granola bar, and we fed her together! Officer Steve told me that he too thought she would bite, that she looked she had been out here a long time, about his own dog, and about his tough morning. I could not believe what he had seen just that morning... being a Police Officer is a terribly hard job! (I will continue to pray for what he sees each day!)
I realized something as I sat in the snow, working with Officer Steve, and befriending tiny Reese Witherspoon... Something I think I knew, but know more now by the look that began to change on her face over that time.
We are all afraid of something. We all want to give up. We run away from what could be the best for us because it is scary to trust!
BUT our God does not walk away from us. He sits in snow. He sits in our pain. He will chase us, run after us, feed us, and try as hard as He can to love us. And while we snarl, and hide our God waits.
Believe today that our God is sitting WITH you in whatever is going on. And He will feed you with warmth and love... tiny pieces of granola bars until you are ready to accept His offer... until you are ready to trust!
Being held in love is so much MORE warm than wandering in the cold in our own tiny pink sweaters!
Let our God hold you today! Wrap you in His love, and calm your deepest fears... YOU can trust Him!
Officer Steve finally got the towel around her, stroked her face gently with his gloves, and picked up tiny Reese! HE said, "I just don't want her to bite me in the face!" Haha, my thoughts exactly Officer Steve! But he was holding her, and we walked out of the snow together... All three of us!
He put her in the back of his car and wrapped his jacket around her! Officer Steve sweetly asked if I wanted my towel back, but Reese was all wrapped into it!
I said, "No that's okay! She can have it."
I put my other boots on, and drove home with a warm heart and freezing feet!
Grateful to witness the beauty of trust on a snowy Saturday with Reese Witherspoon and Officer Steve!