Crufts

Has anyone been watching Crufts? I do like dogs and saw the ‘prequel’ to Crufts on Wednesday night. The actual event started yesterday, and at 6:30 pm, I was sitting in front of the TV avidly watching the show on Channel 4.

One of the things Crufts does is to showcase a number of ‘Friends for Life’ stories. The one that touched me most was about a disabled boy and his three-legged dog. It was a joy to see how much they loved and meant to each other. They gave of themselves as much as they received: what a wonderful lesson on love! (www.channel4.com/programmes/crufts/articles/crufts-friends-for-life-2013)

Zack, our Pyrenean Mountain Dog, however, decided that he would interrupt me while I was watching Crufts. He wanted company and decided he would sit by me so that I could stroke him whilst trying to watch and listen to what was going on. Have you ever tried to give your attention to two things at once, when one of those attention-seeking ‘things’ is a dog? It is nigh on impossible.

An adoring Zack!

An adoring Zack!

The Crufts show runs for four days, and the next television instalment will be on this evening. Meanwhile, it is back to work as usual. The butcher rang this morning for our B&B order and delivered our handmade sausages and hand-cured and sliced bacon early this afternoon. As we exchanged some chit chat, I found out that it is really rather quiet in the area, with not as many people around as we would normally have seen on the streets say, three years ago. According to Andy and other observers, people are visiting the area but not staying overnight simply because everyone is suffering from the economic doldrums. Certainly, we are feeling that we could do with more trade too, and to that end are offering various special deals.

With the UK economy currently on a slide, Crufts provides a bit of sparkling fun for dog lovers. I enjoy seeing the myriad breeds of dogs and marvel at how differently they look from one another, both within their own breeds and also across the whole spectrum of dogdom. It makes me think about the creativity of God, and how He loves each individual, whether whole or maimed, black or white. I recall a chorus I used to sing in Sunday School:

Jesus loves the little children,

All the children of the world:

Red and yellow, black and white,

All are precious in His sight,

Jesus loves the little children of the world.

I think most dogs have a greater capacity for faithfulness and love than many humans. Many dogs would lay down their lives for their owners. I suppose what I am trying to say is that the love that one might receive from a loyal dog is, in a sense, an excellent metaphor for Jesus’ love for us all: one is loved for who one is and for who one might become, irrespective of one’s looks or station in life. One is simply loved for oneself.

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