This is the Day…Wednesday
May 12, 2021
Guess who is coming to dinner
“When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.” (Leviticus 19:33-34)
When I was a young boy, we had a Border Collie mixed dog we named Brownie. I am not sure how Brownie came to have that name. It was possibly because Brownie was brown! I prefer to think he received his name in honor of my Mom’s delicious chocolate brownies! Regardless, Brownie was a good dog. Always loved to be patted. But by the time I was old enough to spend time with Brownie, he was already rather old and lethargic. Not much of an adventurer.
So, I found another friend in the neighborhood. His name was Smokie. Smokie was a large Collie with long, thin, wispy hair. Smokie belonged to the Whistnut family up the road but to me Smokie was my dog. He was very loyal and loved to follow me around as we explored the neighborhood. I was a faithful companion to Smokie also. I made sure he was kept safely out of the road and had plenty of water and snacks during the day. At night, Smokie would head back home to his family up the street.
Evidently, Smokie was seeking a different type of companionship from some of his other friends. One afternoon, when Smokie had not come to my house, I went to his and found Smokie lying in the shade with another dog. His friend was a beautiful Labrador, Retriever mix. I did not know her name, but it was clear that she was expecting puppies any day now.
Several days later, I went to visit Smokie, and his friend was lying under the porch of Smokie’s house with six adorable puppies climbing all over her. I began picking up the puppies to check them out and realized that one of the puppies was quite different. One of the puppies was thinner, with longer whiskers and a long tail. It was a cat! And that dinner guest was certainly making himself at home!
I was amazed as I watched Smokie and his friend taking care of their puppies and this foreign visitor. The Mama was licking and cleaning the cat just like it was one of her own puppies. All the while Smokie was sitting proudly beside his new family and their special adopted guest. They loved their foreign guest as one of their own.
Seems to me, we could learn a lot from Smokie and his friend. They were clearly willing to love the cat as their native-born. Unfortunately, we are not always so welcoming to the strangers in our lives. We tend to question their background and remain skeptical of their motives. But maybe it is time we started treating them as one of our own? You never know. One day you may be the foreigner out there, seeking to find a place to call home.