The Consequences of Fretting

Vern, our handsome Frenchie isn’t eating these days. His approach to how he views food has changed. Instead of rushing over to his bowl and digging in, he stops a couple of feet away from the morsels nestled together in his bowl and looks around. If he discovers his sister Bee in eye shot, he walks away from the food.

What could be causing this behavior? Could he be afraid of the white and black female that is no larger than himself? Is he trying to hold on to something that he has control over, the ability to make the choice to eat or not to eat? Is he afraid that if he starts munching on his food, she will come over and growl?

One thing is true. He has created a scenario in his mind that is just as real as if Bee attacked him every time he ate. (Which is not true at all) But you can’t tell him that. As much as we want him to eat, he leaves his food and retreats to the couch.

How often do we create a situation in our own minds that appears to be real but in reality doesn’t exist? I personally don’t like conflict. So if I have to confront someone about a problem, I usually create a horrific scenario that floats around in my thinking. This makes it harder for me to confront the situation and sometimes I even ignore it, hoping it will just go away.

But we are not hardwired to hold on to unresolved situations. When we do, bitterness and anger sprout up and take over. Psalm 37-38 states, “Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.”

I know that if I follow the instructions God has given in this passage, my life would be so much better. So I am going to try and put my hope in the Lord and fan off worrying about things I have no control over. If I could only convince Vern that his fretting over his food isn’t healthy, I am sure he would dig in. But given he is a dog, I doubt he would understand my logic. As for me, I need to put my trust in the Lord, even when it pertains to my four legged friends.

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