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Sam was a great bird dog. If he pointed to a clump of bushes, there surely was a bird in there. He was much more than just a bird dog. Often we’d share together lazy lunches in an abandoned apple orchard, and the snooze that followed.

Late one afternoon, Sam and I became separated. Neither of us was familiar with the area. I called and whistled. No sign of Sam. I had to get back to town for an important appointment. But how could I leave Sam? If he finally came back and I wasn’t there, would I lose him for good?

Then I remembered a trick an old dog trainer had passed on. I unbuttoned my jacket, and laid it on the ground under the branches of a small bush. I worried all night. But when I returned the next morning there was Sam curled up with his nose under the sleeve of my jacket. He looked up and wagged his tail. His eyes seemed to say, "Where’ve you been friend? I’ve been waiting for you all night. But I knew you’d come back."

Later I wondered. When I get lost, do I have the trust to look for some part of God’s word and curl up in it? To wait patiently, knowing that my Friend will find me if I just have faith in him?

(From a sermon by Stephen Sheane, Faith Training, 9/21/2011)

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