A truth to consider when your life alarms you.

The other day my dog paced, panicked by what he had heard outside the house: a lawnmower. He panted as he passed me in the kitchen, while he aimed to detect whether what he heard would hurt him.

It was my lunch break — a quick trip home to eat. While I ate, I thought about the work outside of work that overwhelms me. Stuff to write. A chastity talk to cut from 45 minutes to 30. Flights to book. Contracts to write.

Whoever pushed the mower outside pushed it closer.

Lawnmowers are everything that alarms my dog.

They are loud. They are probably scary to look at. They are bigger than he is, their paths are unpredictable, and their purpose is a mystery.

He can’t handle it.

Can I handle this? I thought while I thought about all my deadlines.

My dog clearly thought about the mower. Lawnmowers are disruptive. They cause him discomfort. He is scared of them. They overwhelm him.

He passed me again in the kitchen, unaware of me. Too distracted by the threat outside to notice me. Too afraid to recall the confidence he can have in me — he is never alone when he has to face what he fears.

So I dropped my to-do list onto the table and abruptly stepped out in front of him.

“It’s OK!” I said. “I’m with you.”

And then, I wondered.

How many times a day does God say the same thing to me?