This post is by Gianna Kordatzky.
Two years ago we got a dog. A dog is an adventure that we didn’t understand when we decided we needed one for our family.
And need one we did. Our son’s epilepsy caused us some anxiety, and we really wanted a dog who was created by God to be keenly aware of its surroundings. Even without being a trained seizure God, Gypsy has given us a lot of peace of mind.
Anyway, the reason for getting our dog is not the point. The fact of the matter is we got a dog. And it has changed the rhythm of my mornings greatly.
It has not changed the most of my day so much since I insist the whole family needs to pitch in. But the mornings. They went from quiet mornings huddled under blankets with my books and Bible to popping out of bed due to a high-pitched whine at the top of the stairs.
Then, a frantic pulling-on of my dog-walking gear. In the winter this includes snow pants, boots, winter jacket, hat, mittens, hood. In the summer, it’s putting on my dog pants, an appropriate top, shoes, and my fannypack of sorts.
After that, I load up on my dog-walking gear: treats, poop bags, leash, and phone and earbuds. In the summer, I also need a filled water bottle for Gypsy.
Finally, I’m out the door for a mile walk to the park. I listen to an audiobook. Usually, it’s a nonfiction book about Christian life or another topic I’m interested in learning about.
Sometimes, I listen to a podcast if I feel like I don’t have it in me to focus on my current book. II can’t listen to the Bible because I completely tune it out.
When I get to the park, Gypsy plays with other dogs. Sometimes it’s a three dog day. Sometimes it’s an eight dog day. And while the dogs play, the humans chat about whatever is on our minds. It might be disgruntled neighbors or plans for the holidays. I’m always talking about what we are doing at our church. It may be the war in Ukraine or fights within our families. It could be about mutual friends we didn’t even know we had. Sometimes we just laugh at or play with our dogs.
I love these mornings. I love them so very much. What I love most about them is three-fold. I get a two mile walk in for myself. Gypsy has an intense exercise/social time and will sleep most of the morning. Also, I have connected with a group of people that I would never have for any other reason.
What I don’t love about it is how my quiet God Time is shortened significantly. By the time I get home, I usually have enough time to make coffee before I have to take my youngest daughter to her orchestra class. Then, I get home in time for maybe 30 minutes without my other kids around and needing me. When I realized how much my mornings were changing, I was extremely discouraged.
But then, I read Jen Stanbro’s article about Quality Time with God versus Quantity Time. I was so encouraged that whether I have fifteen minutes or 45 minutes (or even just two), I can still connect with God.
I can write in my journal a few lines. I can copy two or three lines of a Psalm. I can think about a verse in Ephesians. I can pray for one of my friends, my kids, and my husband. It doesn’t have to take an hour. It can take 15 minutes. I can know my Lord better after that time no matter how much time I have.
Major shifts in life will disrupt your current rhythms. It’s okay to make adjustments. Even if you are making adjustments for a dog.
Gianna Kordatzky was born and raised in the “Star of the North” Minnesota. Married to her college sweetheart for 23 years, she and Chris are busy raising their four kids ranging from ages 12-17. Gianna has trusted Jesus as her Savior since she was four years old. She runs a small online publication called Family Fun Twin Cities and homeschools her kids. In her spare time, she likes to read, write, be creative, and listen to podcasts.
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