Observations from the dog park

I took Molly & Moe to the Hoover dog park last night. It was fun! They got to run and sniff other dogs and greet other people. Amazingly, folks trust other people (and dogs) within the fence. I expected other people to make sure M&M were safe and OK with the other dogs – and they could expect the same from me. It’s the kind of place that usually has someone you don’t know – and maybe someone you’ve met there before. Typically you remember the dog more than the person! When someone would go in or out the gate, we all made sure that no dogs escaped. We kept our eyes out for all the dogs. If one dog was a little bit afraid, the other people made sure she felt safe. People also cleaned up after their dog’s mess – the park provides little black bags for just such things. This makes it more pleasant for everyone! It’s also great to hear how cute or sweet or happy your dog looks; it just makes you smile. The dog park is a great, fluid, dynamic community of people and dogs. It’s a great place for people to relax, dogs to have freedom to run and play, and all to enjoy being outside. The friendliness of the dog park reminds me of the article written about Auburn by the South Carolina guy – apparently he was impressed last Saturday!

So, how does the dog park community translate to the BHM community or the Shades community or the world at large? I’m not sure it does???

How often do we watch out for each other – folks we don’t know as well as our family and friends? Are we trying to make sure everyone stays safe? Are we watching to make sure someone doesn’t get out-of-bounds and into trouble? What about trying to comfort someone who is afraid or lonely or scared? When is the last time I helped clean up the mess from someone who needed help?

One aspect of the dog park is certain – all dogs need water! There is a fountain inside the gate. The bowl is usually kept full by folks who’ve gone before. Everyone wants to make sure that every dog has the water they need. Isn’t that amazing?

What about the Living Water? Do we really care if others have tasted Living Water? Do we even bother to tell them how to find it? The verse below is an encouragement to keep being a community – to share, to help, to serve…to keep going, to not give up!

Galatians 6:9-10 The Message
So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of fait