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Photo by Susan Livingston

A common Christian cliché is: God will never give you more than you can handle. Many of us fall prey to these words, especially when we have also fallen on hard times. Scripture has a lot to say about trials and tribulations, but truthfully that cliché is nowhere in the Bible. I have always found it difficult to decipher how I am supposed to handle the painful, sorrowful areas of life, so God sent me Warrior.

I consider myself a connoisseur of dogs, specifically large breed dogs that most people find undesirable. My mom has a tendency to huff and puff when I find a big baby like Warrior, before finally admitting that I only get it from her! We found Warrior at a junkyard, in a cage, on a hot summer day, after being hit by a car. Though he was clearly in pain he greeted us with a smile and that did me in.

His previous humans gave him to us, as they could not afford to care for him, so he became a part of our family. A defenseless, injured pup that we found out had two broken hips and a broken femur. He had to have surgery to repair the damage, and a bit of rehabilitation before he could walk, but he was worth it.

Photo by Samie Perez

Now Warrior is Glenhaven’s best guardian and loudest line of defense. He is a Great Pyrenees mix, so he is nocturnal with instincts to guard, and to listen.  He finds snakes (and sometimes turtles) and corners them until we can kill them, and he keeps other dogs away . He is an essential part to life at Glenhaven that we would never have had if he had not recovered from his injuries successfully.

Warrior taught me a pivotal lesson. It took less than 2 seconds for him to be hit by a car, but both surgery and long-term recovery for him to get back to normal. There was nothing he could do on his own to start the process of recovery or to heal himself. He was this crazy talented LGD (livestock guardian dog) that needed help.

Here was this dog who naturally would be self-reliant, who after a terrible injury needed help. If this was the case for a dog, why do I assume that it is not the case for me? Why is it so easy to believe the common cliché over Scripture? John 16:33 say’s “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.

That means we can trust the fight is not for us to face alone. While Scripture does teach us that we will face tribulation, there is nowhere that God tells us to conquer or face it on our own or in our own strength. The victory is His and His alone! Whatever you’re struggling with today, take it from Warrior, depend on the community God set around you and His victory on the cross to get you through it. It may take time, but His glory revealed through the warrior you are becoming will always outshine the pain and suffering.