Right now my family is in a bit of an uproar. My wife, two sons, and daughter all want a dog but I am refusing to get one. Now before all the “dog people” start extolling the virtues of canine companionship let me explain myself.
I live in a place where you can legitimately expect it to snow in 6 of the 12 months out of the year. Our yard is just a slightly bigger than a postage stamp and we already have two indoor animals. A skittish hamster named Snowball and a rotund, ill-tempered, and neurotic cat named Holly Chaffins (yes our cat has a last name that is different than ours. I will explain sometime. It's a riveting tale).
While my family assures me that they will take care of the dog I know that this dog will demand much more work and attention than both Snowball and Holly Chaffins put together. The dog will need walking in the dead of winter. It will need to be boarded when we travel – which is quite often since we do not live near family. The dog will be messy which will necessitate constant clean-up both outside and inside. The dog will need training which will take time and effort. The dog will cost money: vet bills, food, boarding, grooming, and the list goes on and on. But none of these things are the real reason I don’t want a dog.
The real issue is the sense of mourning associated with loss. So here is the confession. I don’t want a dog because if we get a dog I will get attached to him/her and when he/she dies I will mourn the loss. But isn’t this wrong-headed? Am I allowing the reality of sin and the fall to keep me and my family from experiencing the love and joy of His creation?