Arwen had a red ribbon around her neck, so that was something good thing about her. But for the most part, she wasn't one of my favorites because she was very active and rambunctious. A bit hyper. I remember thinking, the week of puppy selling, that she would be a hard one to get rid of because no one wanted a hyper, out-of-control dog.
Then Jeff got a call from someone whose name has been changed to Sue to protect her privacy, and his phone is loud, so I can usually hear the person on the other end. The conversation was typical, with questions about the parents, the color, etc. But when Jeff asked if Sue was interested in breeding, I heard her say clearly, "No, I just want a companion."
Something about the way she said it struck a chord with me. Sue was lonely. I found out later she's single and twenty-something, lives alone, had a lot of experience with dogs growing up, and this is her first puppy of her very own.
When Sue came the next day to look at the puppies, Arwen made a beeline for her, and Sue fell in love. I thought about her expressed desire for a companion and thought, Oh dear, she doesn't want this one. So I asked her, "What kind of dog are you looking for, personality-wise?"
She answered quickly, "I want a very active dog who's really friendly and isn't just going to sit around all day sleeping."
Aha. Well then. Arwen was perfect for her.
Sue barely spent any time looking at any of the other puppies. She and Arwen picked each other from the start, and it was a done deal. After she signed the contract and paid, we set up a time for her to come get Arwen when she was eight weeks old. Sue had been fairly reserved and nonverbal throughout our visit, but as she was leaving, despite her best efforts, she couldn't hide her excited smile.
We had Arwen a few more days after that, and in that short time, the little dickens proceeded to become the only puppy who figured out how to escape the puppy pen. Stinker. Jeff had to build up the fencing to keep her in.
She hadn't tried to escape before she met Sue, though. It was almost like she knew she didn't belong with us anymore, and she was going looking for her mama.
We had arranged for Sue to come pick Arwen up at noon on Sunday, so we went to the early service at church. On our way home from church, Sue called, at 10:30am, and said, "Hi, I'm at your house... I just decided to come a little early..."
When we arrived ten minuets later, Arwen had a new collar and was following Sue around with her little nose and tail high in the air, as if to say, "I'm going home today!"
I told Sue that her puppy had become Houdini Arwen and it had almost seemed like she was looking for her, and Sue said, "She was."
In the beginning, we had been very firm about not letting the puppies go until they were exactly eight weeks old, but when it didn't make sense for two couples to drive down twice from the Seattle area, we let a couple of pups go a couple of days early. So when Sue called to confirm our Sunday pickup time, Jeff offered to let her take Arwen on Saturday if that worked better for her. She thought about it, and said, "No, I still have a little preparation to do. Let's stick with Sunday."
I just really liked the fact that Sue was purposeful about choosing Arwen, loving her, going to prepare a place for her, and then coming back and getting her at the perfect time. It was a picture to me of what Jesus is doing right now, for each of us:
"Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going."
Thomas said to him, "Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?"
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
At the perfect time. We might still be in the whelping pen, having seen Jesus our Lord and wishing to go to Him immediately, and we may try to escape our circumstances and push ahead through life on our own, but there's a reason God has each of us where we are, and when the time is right, He will come back for us. He promised He would, and He always keeps His promises.