Belle is a beagle who stole my heart two years ago when I first saw her picture online. She has one blue eye and one brown one.
I found her at a rescue center and she became a very important part of the Butler family. As I’m typing these words, she is asleep in her crate just behind my chair.
Americans love our pets. It is estimated that we spent $63 billion on our pets in 2016, of which $23 billion was spent on food.
Notice that billion with a "b" is not a mistake. I actually did a double take when I read that. It’s truly mind-boggling to consider.
I want you to know that I’m not trying to put a guilt trip on anyone. I intend to continue to feed and care for Belle. Her companionship is worth it to me. But I’m reminded of something that is very important. I want you to consider it with me.
In God’s eyes, people are of greater importance than animals. I do believe that human beings are the pinnacle of God’s creation, and that we alone are made in his image. Because of that, is imperative that we care for other people.
There are so many ways to do that. We should give to charities that truly help others. We should participate in mission projects where we can use our gifts and talents to benefit others. And we should treat others with respect that they deserve simply because they are God’s creation.
May I admit something to you? I don’t always want to do that. When someone cuts me off in traffic and then salutes me, I do not want to express God’s love to them. I’m sure you feel the same way.
But then I remember this. Jesus died for each person I meet. He gave his life so that they might know him.
People matter to the Lord. He loves us. And because he loves us, we ought also to love each other.