I love my dog. A lot.
He likes cartoons.
He gets in the holiday spirit.
He’s an avid sports fan.
He likes my friends.
And, most importantly, he teaches me important life lessons:
Napoleon recently got into a tasty battle royale with a bowl of ice cream. Like me at $1 hot dog night at Nationals Park, Napoleon went crazy and dove right into the bowl. The frozen vanilla goodness disappeared as quickly as Lindsay Lohan’s career. Of course, there was plenty of sticky residue left all over Napoleon. I could have just left it there. That would have given me more time to watch the Food Network and Napoleon would have been perfectly content to just nap the rest of the day away in his vanilla-coated fur. For now.
However, in the long run, his fur would get all matted, he’d develop an old dairy stank, and he’d start to itch. Thus, it was bath time.
As soon as I turned on the water, Napoleon darted out of the bathroom. I hadn’t seen anything move that quickly since Amanda heard that Tom’s were on sale at Macy’s. He did everything in his power to avoid the bathtub. He ran. He hid. He growled. He squirmed. He cried.
Although he hated every second of it, a bath was exactly what he needed.
And then it hit me.
I do the exact same thing.
When I look back on my 23 years of life, I can cite plenty of frustrating moments. Although I bemoaned them at the time, I now look back at many of those struggles as my greatest blessings. Yep, they sucked. Yep, they were painful. Yep, I wish there was an easier way. But after seeing how things played out, I’m infinitely thankful for a lot of those trials (I’d like a mulligan on a few of them). I needed a “bath” and God was often there to provide one at the right time and right place, even if I thought it was the worst thing since “Saved by the Bell: The New Class.” Although both the Bible and the Rolling Stones have been hollerin’ at me for years about this, it took a six-pound Chihuahua and his hatred of baths to make it clear:
Katy Perry is the real American Idol.
No wait, not that.
Our greatest struggles are often the prerequisites for our greatest victories.