24. In the Moment with a Big Black Dog

I felt my Father illustrated the Corrie ten Boom quote from my last post to me powerfully this last week in Central Asia.  I have been living the last weeks in a community with lots of dogs.

Big Dogs.

Dogs that easily jump their fences and come to greet me.

If you know me, you would know that for the last 25 years I have been pressing into God’s help to overcome fear of dogs I don’t know. The fear gained ground when I was 17 and had two dogs chase and attack me when running in Oregon.

So one day this last week I needed to walk to a friend’s house by myself and already knew the dogs on certain streets to her house. I knew, on these streets, where they might jump out, when there were dogs that were bigger then I, and ones that were all bark, but wouldn’t do anything. So I started walking, and on the second street there was an unexpected development.

There in the middle of the road about 40 meters ahead was a black dog sitting just looking at me as I rounded the corner. I went back to where it couldn’t see me and prayed.

“God, I really don’t want to back down and go another route or worse go home, because of what might happen. Please calm me and show me what to do.”

Although my adrenaline was flowing strongly as usually happens outside in this neighbourhood, I felt God nudge me to just keep walking and see what would happen when I got to the dog. When I was about 10 meters away, a lady just happened to be coming out her door met me and walked with me past the dog. She told me casually to just walk right past it and not to talk to it. God’s grace was there once again in the moment, but I wouldn’t have experienced that if I would have backed down with fear, because of what might be.

There were other dogs on the journey to my friend’s house, but with that fresh reminder that even if I was attacked, His grace would be enough “ in that moment”. I walked with joy in my heart knowing that the God who can guide me through this pack of vocal canines is the same God that can guide me through the unknowns of the EA path ahead of me.

Alex

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