by Rosemary Babb
One day, as God was strolling in the meadow near Heaven’s front gate, He heard a disturbance. On approaching, God saw the Angel of Dogs gently remonstrating with a fluffy white dog. The dog’s tail curled over his back and his eyes sparkled like the sun. He seemed somehow made up of clouds and stars, and he had the biggest dog smile that even God had ever seen. The dog was barking, pleasantly but insistently, at the front gate, with an occasional wooo-wooo for good measure.
God called over the Angel of Dogs. “What are you doing?” He asked, “and what kind of a dog is that?” The Angel replied, “That is a Samoyed. He has arrived in advance of his people, and now he insists on going back to Earth to be with them. He says they need him to watch over them. I was called because no one else could convince him to stay here. He says he likes Heaven just fine, but he is needed at home. ”
God said, “I have heard of storming the gates of Heaven to get in, but never the opposite. Didn’t you tell him that going back would be against all the rules of Heaven? His people are supposed to wait for their time to come here, and he is supposed to wait here for them.” The Angel answered, “I did try to explain. But he says that rules have never applied to Sammies, and he doesn’t see why they should start applying now, when he is needed back on Earth.”
“Are you sure a creature this hardheaded belongs entirely to Me?” God asked the Angel. The Angel thought for a moment. “It’s true there is an impish, mischievous streak in this dog, that I cannot entirely account for. But I assure you that he is entirely a creature of Heaven, and this is his rightful home.”
Meanwhile, the dog continued to bark at the gate, stopping only to glance at them as if to say, “Well, if you can open the gate for me, what’s keeping you?” Then God gently reached out His hand and picked up the Sammy. He held the dog near His face and whispered in its ear. As the Angel of Dogs watched, the Sammy curled up contentedly in God’s hand and went to sleep. He appeared to be dreaming good dreams; his paws made some gentle movements, and he was still smiling that Sammy smile. Soon tiny musical snores, like bells ringing in the far distance, could also be heard. God tucked the sleeping white dog into a fold in the front of His shining white robe. It was hard for the Angel to tell which sparkled more, the robe or the sleeping Sammy.
“There,” God explained to the Angel, “Even I should not break all the rules, not even for a Sammy. But I have promised him he will sleep next to My heart until his people come to him. He will be with them in his dreams, and they all will be reunited when the time is right. Until then, I Myself will watch over them, so their Sammy can rest.”
As God and the Angel strolled away from the gate, accompanied by an occasional quiet, musical snore, the Angel glanced back. Peace had again descended at the gate, and shimmering in the air of Heaven, the Angel caught a glimpse of a Sammy smile.
Copyright Rosemary Babb.