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Ask the Beasts

Even the animals – the donkey

and the ox – know their owner

and appreciate his care for them,

but not my people Israel.

No matter what I do for them,

they sill don’t care.

Isaiah 1:3 TLB [1]

“You’ve been a part of my life for forty-two years dear Gertrude and you have helped me in so many ways. I couldn’t have gotten by without you. Your loyalty and faithfulness to me – giving of yourself through the years – have meant more than I can say. I love you and thank you for all you’ve been to me and all you have done for me.” Gertrude looked at him with her beautiful, loving, brown eyes and put her head on his chest as he tenderly stroked her face. He was unashamedly crying as he softy said goodbye. It was Shakespeare who penned those tender words, “Parting is such sweet sorrow”. [2]

These are, no doubt, the last words for a dearly loved companion? No, these are parting words from a dairy farmer to one of his cows as he stood on the loading dock, watching each one of them as they left the farm because he was not able to care for them any longer. He loved them and they loved him. He had cared for those beasts all those years, fed them regularly, watched over them when they had a cut or sore foot, or when they were going to have a little one, If they could have responded to his care they would have expressed their love, their gratitude, and thankfulness for providing for their every need.

God says: But it isn’t sacrificial bullocks and goats that I really want from you. For all the animals of field and forest are mine! The cattle on a thousand hills! And all the birds upon the mountains! If I were hungry, I would not mention it to you — for all the world is mine and everything in it. No, I don’t need your sacrifices of flesh and blood. What I want from you is your true thanks, I want your promises fulfilled. I want you to trust me in your times of trouble, so I can rescue you, and you can give me glory. [3]

Is that asking too much of us? Thank Him. Be faithful to Him. Trust Him. I know we’ve talked about this before, but I need reminding and perhaps you do, too. Those three “wants” are required in any meaningful relationship. Taking constantly without expressing gratitude will bring about resentment between friends, family, or lovers. That indicates selfishness and self-centeredness. And not carrying out the promises we made to each other – not being faithful to our word and causing pain and grief will result in giant schisms. Then there’s trust. Trusting your friend, your spouse, your family as they stand in front of us or with us on the battlefields we meet here on Planet Earth.

God says that even the animals do that – but not His people. The children I raised and cared for so long and tenderly have turned against me. [4] We are His children and He’s talking to us.

“Dear one, I long to hear you say thank You for all I have done for you. I have met your every need and cared for you when you were hurting and lonely. Can you understand how painful it is for Me when you are not faithful to Me but let other things come before Me? And surely you know that you can trust Me? I yearn for your fellowship. I want us to be together – in every situation. I love you dear one.”

I doubt that God smiles a lot these days. He’s watching each one of us as we turn from Him to follow other things that are more important. I can imagine that tears flow down His cheeks when we say to Him, “I have other things to do today, Lord. Perhaps tomorrow.”

God determined that He would rather die than be without us. [5].

“But now ask the beasts, and let them teach you;

And the birds of the heavens, and let them tell you.

“Or speak to the earth, and let it teach you;

And let the fish of the sea declare to you.

“Who among all these does not know

That the hand of the Lord has done this,

In whose hand is the life of every living thing,

And the breath of all mankind?

Job 12:7-10

[1] Taylor: The Living Bible

[2] Romeo & Juliet

[3] Psalm 50:9-15: Taylor: The Living Bible

[4] Isaiah 1:2b: Taylor: The Living Bible

[5] Pres Gillham: Grace in Ungracious Places

About the Author

Anabel spent decades teaching in many contexts through Lifetime Guarantee Ministries. She has taught countless others how to have a genuine intimate faith and a sound marriage. She shared from her heart about living from the heart. Lifetime’s beloved founder and mentor passed away November 7, 2010. Her legacy and influence are timeless and priceless.