Galatians 6:2 (NIV) says Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
I admit that I am not good at this. Over the last couple years with all the things going on in my life I have found myself floundering in my own needs and “burdens.” Yesterday I was given the opportunity to do just that.
On her way home from job club Mary passed a couple young men on the side of the road with a sign that read, “Our dog is out of food.” With them was a black dog…she thought it might be a Lab. She was shaken to the core by this and asked if we could help. She picked me up and I rode with her to determine if this was a believable situation.
I found two guys roughly in their early to mid 20s. Each had an overly stuffed duffle – Army surplus style. They were filthy and I could smell them from 100 feet away. Their story (and later confirmed by a very generous Police Officer) was that they hopped off the freight train and were going to hoof it into Minneapolis to catch another one. Apparently getting on is easier than getting off without being caught. They were not technically homeless – as they explained – because they had chosen to hit the road from the east coast and find jobs at farms … and panhandle which wasn’t going well (enter the Officer who decided NOT to arrest them for having a sign asking for money).
With them was a 4 year old Staffie named Satan. He was gorgeous and very friendly. Allegedly a rescue dog. Poor guy was indeed thin but not emaciated. Yet. And they were out of dog food – for the 4th day. The photo below is NOT Satan but could be his twin.
Of course Satan had food allergies – specifically to corn, wheat and soy. A bag of Pedigree wouldn’t do. I ran into PetCo and found a decent food for him that was rather inexpensive. I presented them with the 5 pound bag and gave them strict instructions to feed him small amounts at a time since it had been a few days since he had eaten. I also suggested that they not go over the 2 cups as suggested on the bag….he wasn’t that underweight and they needed to make it last. I also commented on how I wouldn’t give them food…it was their choice to be out on the road but not the dog’s. That made me angry. They were directed to the food shelf and off we went.
I know some people may roll their eyes that I consider this “carrying someone’s burden.” But the fact of the matter is this beautiful dog is one of God’s creatures and HE indeed had a burden: no food and being drug across the country in freight trains! OK, I will admit the name “Satan” had me a bit hesitant.
Both Mary and I felt better about what we did. Oh sure, they could have been a couple losers that lived down the street – but the dog needed food. That in itself was obvious.