Anna Unaware

Have you ever had the feeling that you were being watched?

The other day I was in the yard, watering plants, and turned to check on Anna (our dog) who was wandering close to the woods. When I looked up I saw a large doe, standing very still, looking back at me. Anna was within about three feet of her, oblivious. The deer and I watched as Anna sniffed her way into a patch of ivy to do her "business," so focused on what she had to do that she was completely unaware of the deer's presence. "Duty" done, she then started her morning rounds, nose-to-earth, searching out familiar and foreign scents. Finally, she noticed.

I thought Anna would chase that deer the moment she saw her. But instead, they stood and looked at each other, almost as if in greeting. They stood still for the longest time, each daring the other to blink. Then, to my surprise, Anna looked down and smelled the ground, as though no longer interested in the game. I watched as the deer pulled back her ears and ever so slowly turned to leave. Then Anna hopped towards her, but not in a chasing way. It was more playful than anything. In a moment the deer was gone, with no dog in pursuit.

I wondered . . . was this deer's scent so familiar that Anna thought she belonged there? Had they met before?

It was a holy moment and one I might have easily missed. Had I been as focused on my watering as Anna had on her "business" I could have missed the whole thing. Yet something in me said, "Look up."

How often are we so focused on the business at hand that we miss the Presence around us? How often do we miss the special moments? How often do we ignore the inner promptings, the "holy nudges" that open our eyes and hearts to what is sacred and good and real?

Look up!