Humans and all of creation worked in harmony and unity. Everything functioned like it was supposed to and all was well. No, it was better than that. It was very good (Genesis 1:31). But then humans sinned and because of our sin we fell away from God and now live in a world that is dominated by sin, struggle, death, and suffering.
This may seem like a stretch to some of you but I think that part of my hesitance about getting a dog is bound up to the fact that this world is not how it is supposed to be. God created it good but we have polluted it. God ordered it perfectly but we have brought disorder to it. But even among the disorder we can see the imprints of God’s handy work.
Romans 1:20 tell us:
For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse
But what difference does it make for our family when it comes to getting a dog? I think it makes all the difference in the world. Honestly, I am still not sure we are dog people. But working through this decision has taught me something about what it means to live as a kingdom citizen in a fallen world.
It has taught me that as a child of God I should not fear the effects of the fall so much that I miss out or cause my family to miss out on experiencing the greatest of God’s invisible qualities, love. Whether or not we get a dog isn’t the issue. The issue is how I will choose to live. Will I live a life that marginalizes love to avoid pain? Or will I choose to love freely, even risking pain, as a testament to the overcoming work of God that is manifested in love – even love for His creation.