Last night our seven-month old pound puppy, Denali, aggressively snarled and hurled at Chena, our six month old Great White Pyrenees shepherd sweetie. This was the fourth random, snarling session in the last 2 months and really unnerved me. Denali was separated from her mother and siblings too soon and put into a stressful shelter environment before coming home with us at seven weeks old. I didn’t realize the challenge we were taking home, too caught up in her sweet puppy eyes. All along we have struggled with her lack of boundaries and I often recognize the confusion on her face as she tries to figure what we want. She has a hankering to be the alpha, and her howling (literally) protests to my dominance are sometimes quite entertaining. But last night was the breaking point. I had a surge of fear thinking about what could happen with this loose cannon of a dog. My darling daughter sobbed huge tears as I honestly processed with her that we were going to have to get rid of Denali if she continues to be aggressive. (She has already had to give up two dogs due to our moves out of country and I HATE to put her through the pain again, but we HAVE to be a safe place). Denali hasn’t hurt anyone- it appears to be all growl and bared teeth, but we can’t take the chance here.
I have always craved and attempted to create community, beginning with a small band of fourth grade misfits meeting in the coat closet. A nursing school friend and I pioneered a Christian Nurses Association at our college and I led several small groups at church. As young marrieds we worked with youth and always had people in our home- at one point we were leading three small groups. I couldn’t get enough! There was something so very satisfying about engaging heart to heart, yet I could never get it to the depth and maturity I was yearning for. Several years ago I felt the Lord speak to my heart and encourage me to keep pressing in. As I prayed, these words were imprinted on my heart, “Community will be the foundation to any fruit that comes from your life.” Continue reading “Community”
Tom and Donna Cole spent the last twenty-five years ministering to the broken and emotionally wounded through effective inner healing prayer and Biblical truth. They co-authored the book Pure Heart – Restoration of the Heart through the Beatitudes and traveled around the world leading Pure Heart inner healing seminars. In fact, we first met them in one of those seminars in 2010 at our home church in Fairbanks, Alaska. Serving with International House of Prayer and Youth With a Mission, they have poured out their lives for others while raising four amazing children. Tom and Donna are fun, compassionate, hard working, genuine, sold out for Jesus and incredibly inclusive- we feel so blessed to be living life with them.