Wednesday, 20 April 2011

The neighbour's dog and Easter...
I love dogs. We’ve had them in our house since I can remember, and I think they’re the best animals to have around. My parents currently have four (or more like three and a half really, because one of them is expected to die from old age anytime soon) dogs at home, and I couldn’t imagine anything bad happening to them, even though they’ve tried to attack me several times (they’re a bit crazy sometimes). Anyway, the other day I was in my room and I heard a dog howling in pain, like it was being beaten or something. I thought it was one of our dogs and I thought to myself ‘those security guards are at it again; I wish the dogs would just bite off one of their hands!’ But I soon realised that it wasn’t one of our dogs, but one belonging to a nearby neighbour. I listened closely and I could hear someone beating the dog repeatedly with a whip or something similar. I assumed it was one of the kids, and I ignored it with thoughts of ‘why can’t some parents raise their kids right, like my mum did with us?’

The next day, the same thing happened, at almost the same time as previously. I grew a bit concerned. But it didn’t stop there. The following day, I was trying to read and I heard the same dog howling in what sounded like unbearable pain. I could hear the sound of the whip coming down repeatedly on the helpless dog’s body. I was shocked. I couldn’t imagine how anyone could hurt an animal and continue doing so, despite the animal’s pleas for mercy! I jumped out of bed and ran to my mum.
 I was like, ‘Mummy, the neighbours are beating their dog. Can you hear it?’
 She was like, ‘Mm hmm. You know what these people are like.’
I was like, ‘It’s been going on for a few days now, at exactly the same time each day. I want to go and have a word with them, because I can’t bear it.’
My mum looked at me and smiled. ‘Don’t bother. Who knows what they’ve used the dog to do?’
 I was confused. ‘What do you mean?’
‘Well, it is possible they’re using the dog for some kind of ritual and someone’s given them the instruction to beat the dog at 7am every morning...’
Yeah, I know. Like you, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Could it be true? The more I thought about it, the more I realised that it was a very plausible reason, considering the part of the world we live in. And as much as I wanted to march to the neighbour’s house and give them a piece of my mind, I knew I couldn’t because I didn’t feel it would be safe. The first thought that came to my mind was ‘Where is the RSPCA when you need them?’ The second thought was ‘Maybe God can help’. So I prayed. I prayed that God would touch the hearts of our neighbours, and perhaps even speak to them through the dog like Balaam’s donkey spoke to him. I prayed that if they wouldn’t listen, that God would take the dog’s life, so that it wouldn’t have to continue suffering. Amazing the prayers God answers sometimes. You know what, whether the dog spoke (and I really hope it did!) or the neighbours found their hearts, I don’t know. But I never heard that dog again.
As I was thinking about this more recently, I couldn’t help wondering how anyone could inflict pain on another living being, and close their ears to the obvious cries for mercy. I just couldn’t understand it. But then I thought about Easter. As Jesus hung on the cross, He cried. He wept. He was in so much pain. A pastor was explaining the process of crucifixion on TV the other day and I literally changed the channel because I couldn’t bear it. So Jesus was suffering and He actually cried out to His Father but God ‘turned a deaf ear.’ For my sake. For all our sakes. He let Jesus suffer and die, because He didn’t want us to suffer and die. Just as perhaps my neighbours in their ignorance thought that it was necessary for their dog to suffer for them to get a desired result, God in His infinite wisdom thought it necessary for Jesus to suffer on the cross for me (and you) to have a relationship with Him. Easter Sunday represents the day Jesus rose from the dead, and whilst we celebrate that, let’s not forget that He had to go through hell in order for us to live.
‘And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again.’ 2 Corinthians 5:15 (TNIV)


  1. Thank you, Jesus! I really love you, Lord!!
    - Afiniki Akanet

  2. I sure hope your neighbor's dog is still around and scar-free. I hate that people do that. Your mum could be right tho about why they were up to it. I love dogs too. The only reason we dont have one is coz we live in an apartment that doesnt allow anything but smaller (Chihuahua-sized) dogs or cats. Its a real shame how many dogs end up in shelters, especially Pitbulls, which I really love, coz of the kind of owners they have. Unfortunately coz of the general ignorance of the population about pitbulls, them ending up in a shelter is like sending them to death row.

    Hope you had a reflective Easter. Jesus lives.

  3. Thank you Wendal! Easter was fab; Jesus lives indeed! Also, I think our neighbour's dog is actually OK; I've heard it once or twice since then, but the beating's stopped.

    I can't wait to have a proper dog (definitely not those Chihuahua-type things) when I grow up!

  4. beautiful piece really beautiful

  5. Thanks Chuka, I appreciate your comment!