I brought Holy Communion to my 190 million year old neighbor lady in Transylvania County the other day, and afterward was able to greet Laudie-dog the world famous thunder-dog. It was half sunny out, but half not, meaning there could be thunder somewhere in the world, meaning Laudie was spending pretty much 100% of her energy on perceiving the least whisper from any cloud anywhere. Dogs have super highly developed antennae for storms which no NOAA radar had been able to equal to this day. Not hearing anything just this very second, she let herself be slightly distracted by greeting me, offering a paw, but not really even seeing me as she was otherwise preoccupied. If there is thunder that no one else can even hear, off she goes to hide in the deepest darkest cave she can find.
Some have noted that her claws are long and, of all things (I can’t imagine), need a trim. But, no. If she didn’t have those while chasing off to hide when there was a clap of thunder, I fear that the lack of traction would give her a heart attack.
You would be hard pressed not to recall the great prophet Elijah having to be called out to the front of the cave in which he was hidden in the midst of the storms of this world so as to hear the whisper of God’s voice. The whisper bit is an occasion to be trained into properly listening to the voice of our Heavenly Father, an occasion to listen with the attentiveness brought about only by love. But even Elijah was a bit afraid of that love, and could only think of the great storms. He was a reprimanded for this, and sent right back into the heart of the fiercest storms, not so as to hide from them again, but so as to confront them and conquer them, doing God’s will in all things.
Laudie-dog, of course, got a pat on the head for her efforts. :-)
And we listen to the voice of our Heavenly Father speaking the Eternal Word to us, we hearing “Jesus”, that Word Incarnate, as an invitation to be in solidarity with Him even as He is in solidarity with us, and this even while Jesus, during His transfiguration, was speaking with Moses and Elijah about his exodus, His death in Jerusalem, even while our Heavenly Father was saying about Jesus: “This is my beloved Son; listen to Him!”
And so we listen, so as to have the privilege to be crucified with Him for our efforts. :-)