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Dogs, Serving, and Cancer

Dear Friends,

Bev and I got our first dog on our wedding day. We found the little stray in the back seat of our car eating our wedding cake. We learned that he had been beaten and his hair shaved by his drunk former owner. He was so pitiful looking that we named him Frumpy. For the next dozen years Frumpy was a beloved member of our family.

We always had dogs and our last one passed away just before we moved to Georgia when we merged with Larry Burkett’s ministry. Because of our travel schedule, we agreed that we had had our last canine.

So, you can image how surprised I was when Bev told me a couple of weeks ago that she would like a small dog! She felt she would benefit from the companionship and encouragement during her battle with cancer. Two days later she chose a toy poodle puppy named Fluffy weighing 1 pound 4 ounces . . . who needed to be house trained! Our last dog was a German Shepherd and his paw was bigger than Fluffy!

I am fully convinced that the key verse describing the role of the husband as he relates to his wife is Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her.” This is a sacrificial love. A friend once told me, “View every request by your wife as an opportunity to serve her.” So, whether it is taking the garbage out, running an errant for her, or bring Fluffy home, serve your bride joyfully. And we can serve joyfully because we are obeying the Lord when we do serve, and He always is pleased when we obey.

A quick update on Bev’s fight with breast cancer that has spread to her bones: Earlier this week Bev’s oncologist called with good news after reviewing a MRI: the extreme pain Bev has been experiencing in her knee is not cancer; it is a torn meniscus. Please continue to pray for her complete healing.

Warmly in Christ,
Howard Dayton