Friday, January 27, 2006

Keeping Your Eye on the Ball

My daughter posted these thoughts in her blog earlier this week. I could try to come up with something better, but why do that when her words are so beautiful and true? Enjoy . . .

I had some great thoughts today. Thoughts that made me smile really big, and close my eyes, and turn my face up to the sky and let the bright sun and cold, crisp air soak into my being. I was throwing the ball for Lucy (the Higgins' yellow lab) and watching her run across the yard and jump into the water to retrieve it, then run back towards me dripping with lake water, dirt smudged all over her face and paws, smiling around the tennis ball wedged in her mouth. Curtis and I have talked a lot lately about throwing balls for dogs. He says he's jealous that dogs have a master that they can see, and that pleasing their master consists of nothing more than running as hard as they can in the direction of a ball that's been thrown for them.

Watching Lucy today, my mind expanded on these thoughts. Lucy is truly the happiest when she's chasing a ball across the yard. I noticed today that she starts running as hard as she can way before I throw the ball... actually, as soon as the ball is in my hand and I begin lifting my arm, she is already half-way across the yard, running her heart out before any ball is in sight. She runs because her experience tells her that the ball will be thrown and that it will be thrown somewhere in that general direction, even if she has to slightly alter her course once the ball comes in view. But by that time she's already covered most of the distance required to retrieve it. I also noticed that as she's running, waiting for the ball to come into view, she keeps her eyes turned up toward the sky so that she can see the ball flying overhead as soon as possible. Pretty cool image, huh? I think this whole "dog chasing the ball" metaphor is becoming my new philosophy for living.

So yeah.... I want to run as hard as I can in the direction that my experience (there's a lot included in that word) suggests my Master might be pointing. I don't feel like the ball is in view yet, but I want to be ready to snap it up as soon as it lands so I can give it back to the Master with a huge smile on my face as he says, "Well done." So I'd better not stop running. And in the meantime I'll keep my eyes turned up toward heaven.


Good advice for all of us, eh? Let's run today with our eyes toward heaven, wanting nothing more than to please our Master. I'm in. How 'bout you?


Paul said...

Animals make the world a happier place!

Hannah Beth said...

Excellent advice! Thanks for posting.

Jeanne Damoff said...

Thanks, Paul and Hannah Beth. I'll be sure to pass your remarks along to my daughter. :)