We canines don’t often think, write or bark about God and religion. We especially avoid religion since we’ve seen how destructive disagreements over it can be. Some of you humans even fight wars about it and judge others because of it. That doesn’t seem good to me since I think that people are entitled to believe what they want, as long as they don’t hurt anyone. We dogs know this already and so don’t fight over our beliefs. Maybe an occasional tiff over a high-value bone or something, but besides that, I think that we do a pretty good job of all getting along. We’re good at accommodating one another despite the different breeds, colors, and backgrounds that we all have.

God to me, is different from religion and I’d like to tell you about a discussion that I had with my human. Of course, we didn’t actually talk back and forth and discuss things in the true sense of the word. But she does talk to me and I usually understand a lot of what she says.

Today we went to one of the special places where we like to walk; it’s a place that my human loves. I like it too. It’s the garden of a local church and at this time of year, it’s filled with birds, flowering bushes and trees. We go very early in the morning, so we are the only ones there. Today when we went, she sat down on a bench with me by her side. We sat quietly and admired everything that was in bloom. The quiet only lasted for about five minutes before my human started talking again and this what she said to me:

“Benny, do you believe in God?”

I sat there and just looked at her, blinked my brown-flecked eyes, and was not sure of what I was supposed to do. But I was eager to hear more. I thought since we were sitting outside of a church, it must have something to do with religion. But I was wrong.

“Benny, I will tell you when I believe most in God. It’s never when I am sitting in a church or in a religious hall or listening to a sermon from a priest. I believe in God when I see these beautiful flowers. Just look at them! They are glorious! And I also believe in God when I hear the birds sing such pretty songs! How do they know how to do that? And what about the tide as it rushes in and the fish jump? So many things to marvel at in nature! I also believe in God when I look into your eyes, my dear Benny. I see so much love reflected back at me, and it’s unconditional love from you! How do you know so much about love? Between the flowers, the birds and your devotion, I know that God exists. How could he or she not? The beauty of nature in springtime, the songs of the birds, and the power of an animal’s love are such gifts to us humans every day here on earth.”

She finished talking and bent down and hugged me tight. She had a big smile on her face, and I felt very happy since she was happy. And I liked to think that maybe I was sent from God. Like an angel in fur with a wagging tail.

That is all I have to say to you today my dear readers. But think about it as you go about your day and take in the springtime sights and sounds. And when you pet your dog, remember when he looks back at you with love and wagging tail, that God is speaking to you.

Yours,

Benny H.

Benny H. is a 7-year-old mixed-breed dog who enjoys writing, meeting new people, and providing companionship to his loving adopter, Liz Hoffmann. They live in Connecticut. Liz has extensive experience in sales, marketing, and opening her heart to shelter animals.