The temperature and humidity can get significantly high during the summer in the southern United States. July and August are even sometimes referred to as the “dog days” meaning they are the hottest months of the year. This term comes from Greek and Roman literature and the dog star, Sirius, with its timing of position in the heavens. When the star would rise and set with the sun, it was known as the dog days, or the hottest days of the year.
different kinds of dog days
We experience dog days not just in the summer season, but also during difficult seasons of our lives. These times may be a series of miserable days, weeks, months, or even years. Someone going through cancer treatments may not have a single day they feel good for several months. Someone working two jobs to put themselves through college may be exhausted and stressed for four or more years. Shorter dog days of life may center around deadlines at work, chronic pain, broken relationships, and many other struggles. The reality is we live in a broken world, and therefore we will experience seasons of pain in this life.
Whenever we find ourselves in the dog days, it is important to remember certain truths.
Truth during the dog days
First, the dog days will not last forever. In terms of the summer heat, we are comforted that cooler weather of the fall is on its way. Likewise, in life, the dog days do not last. The Scriptures tells us that though the sorrows may last for the night, joy comes in the morning (Psalms 30:5). Even if our dog days are assured to be for the rest of our lives, they are not forever. One day, every tear will be wiped away, pain and sickness will be no more, and the brokenness of this fallen world will be replaced by a new Heaven and a new Earth.
It is also important to remember that we do not have to go through our dog days alone. We have help for the journey. Jesus is a friend “who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24) and who has vowed to “never leave nor forsake us” (Deuteronomy 31:6). Further, we know God’s grace is sufficient and His power is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). Our burdens may be heavy, but He has called us to cast them on Him, for His yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30). We are not alone in our dog days, but instead, have countless promises from God that He is with us in the midst of them.
Lastly, we need to remember that nothing is wasted. The Scriptures tells us the afflictions of our dog days are producing in us an “eternal weight of glory” (2 Corinthians 4:17). God will use our dog days for good in our lives as we trust Him.
The dog days will be over
There’s still a month left for the dog days of summer, and most of us will have dog days of life ahead. Just remember, the dog days don’t last, and as we look to Jesus, they don’t win. Jesus promised His presence through the Holy Spirit who is known as the Comforter, Counselor, and Helper. And don’t forget, this life is like a vapor, and eternity is worth it all!