Years ago, we had an adorable dog named Buffy, who had the cutest puppies we had ever seen. We lived in Seattle at the time and had purchased our first house. We had great neighbors, and one of them was named Diane. Diane fell in love with Buffy’s puppies as soon as she saw them. They were made up of about every color one could imagine. She picked out a cute little puppy with gray, black, and tan markings all over with a white chest. Diane adopted her right away and anxiously awaited the time when her puppy would be weaned from her mama Buffy. I can still remember the day the puppy was adopted and taken to her new home. Diane named her Greta, and the puppy squirmed in her arms with its face looking back at me over Diane’s shoulder as she walked away.
We soon discovered that Greta did not understand that she lived with Diane now, and often escaped out Diane’s door and ran back to our house two doors down. Greta happily pounced through our back door and slid into our kitchen to play with her brother Mickey, whom we had kept, and her mother Buffy. It was
always a happy reunion for the two pups, and they would run around in circles
with yelps of joy over the reunion. We soon got use to these unplanned interruptions from our new extended family.
Diane had become more than a neighbor and was a very good friend to me. We would often visit each other, and always brought the pups to play with each other during our visit. It was on one of these typical visits that the two elated pups began to chase each other around in circles in my living room. All of a sudden, my puppy Mickey began yelping loudly in pain. We looked up to see
Mickey’s lower jaw stuck under Greta’s collar. At first we thought it was minor
but as we both attempted to separate the dogs we realized that the problem was life threatening. Mickey was the only one yelping because he was the only one breathing. A few of his teeth had been knocked loose and were bleeding. Greta was being choked to death by her brother and best friend Mickey. The collar was so tight, we couldn’t unbuckle it.
We had two options: hurt Mickey more, and possibly break his jaw getting him out of Greta’s collar, or watch Greta die in our arms. It was the most helpless situation I had been in before. Diane and I both loved our own dogs more than anything. We also both loved both of the pups equally. We only had a few seconds to respond. Diane blurted out, “Greta isn’t breathing.” I screamed a prayer out loud, “Oh please, dear God, help us!” But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; Your prayer has been heard… Luke 1:13 NIV Bible.
Instantly a calm but urgent voice within my head said, “Go get a sharp knife.” I ran to the kitchen and grabbed a steak knife. I ran back to the sofa where Diane
was trying to separate the two dogs. Mickey was yelping louder and louder through the entire ordeal. Urgently, I shrieked out loud, “Oh God, please help!” I did not know how to start cutting through the thick and durable nylon collar. While trying to keep the dogs still and sawing away with the knife, Greta’s body went limp, fell to the floor from the sofa and produced a bowel movement.
The cut collar fell from my hand. I froze in horror.
Diane quietly said, “Greta’s gone.” We both knew after the moment of death that an animal has a bowel movement. I cried out, “Dear God NO!” At that moment, I raised Greta’s limp head off of the floor and began stroking her neck as tears ran down my cheeks. I thought about how I had prayed in faith and wondered how God could let this happen when I believed in His power to save Greta. Instantly, Greta began breathing and jumped up and began barking excitedly. Diane and I were both in shock and we both looked at each other with disbelief over what had just happened …Everything is possible for him who believes. Mark 9:23. NIV Bible
Then I noticed Diane’s hand bleeding. Her hand had accidentally gotten in the way of my knife when the dogs had squirmed. I gave her a wet towel to stop the bleeding and a band-aid. Thankfully the cut was minor. After the ordeal was over, we confided to each other that we both had been praying through the whole ordeal. We were so relieved that the Holy Spirit had whispered in my ear what to do to save both of our dogs’ lives that day.
The two puppies began nipping and playing happily together. Only this time we made sure they played without their collars. We stared incredulously at the miracle we had just witnessed. We both experienced increased faith in God’s miracles that day. I was in awe that God could take the time to hear our cries and be concerned enough to help us out of our ordeal. The Lord really did care about our daily trial and His fuzzy creatures we love so much.
How many are your works, O Lord! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. These all look to you to give them food at the proper time. When you give it to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things. When you hide your face, they are terrified; when you take away their breath, they die and return to the dust. When you send your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the earth. May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works …Psalm 104: 24, 27-31 NIV