Going Home

I never considered myself a “dog person”, but after last week, I’d say that B and I officially converted into “dog people.”  Neely, our Irish Water Spaniel was actually born here in Minnesota, so as our final weeks in Minnesota wrap up, we decided to pay a little pilgrimage to her homeland. 

We loaded up the car and drove 1.5 hours after work one night to head into the Minnesota country.  The minute we turned onto the dirt road that led to their house, Neely popped right up, SO excited.  Now, she gets excited when she figures out we’re going to one of her favorite places like my parents’ house, the UVA lawn, or the beach, but I’ve never seen her so amped up and ready to go for a brand new place. 

Right when we pulled up, she bounded out of the car and was exploring and sniffing everything and went straight to the patch of grass where she used to be let out to play as a puppy.  This is going to sound crazy, but even four-and-a-half years later, I’m pretty sure she remembered it. 

The breeder, who was the nicest, most “normal” dog breeder I’ve ever met told us all about how Neely was raised as a puppy, reconnected and bonded with Neely, and  told us all about how great Neely’s features were (despite her cropped hair)–great bones; good, solid paws; beautiful eyes…I was so proud!  Neely even got to meet her 2nd cousin!

Neely with Rosemary the breeder

Neely’s cousin Orren–see the resemblance?!  
Neely in front of her old stomping grounds

All-in-all, it was a great visit and Neely was SO happy to head home.

No matter where you are, or how long it’s been, there’s something so comforting about going home and being welcomed back into the fold.  There’s a peace and familiarity there like no other. 

Similarly, no matter how long we’ve been away, when we choose to come back into God’s fold and head home, the doors open wide and we are welcomed in with open arms.

But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. 
Luke 15:20 

He has taken me to the banquet hall, and his banner over me is love.
Song of Songs 2:4