Bert is our Spinone that is 11 years old. He is the white dog that sits on the front seat of my truck while I am in WAWA or the local hardware store. A lot of people introduce me as the guy with the dog in his truck. Over the years Bert has run brace or with the bye-dog at many hunt tests.
At a recent test, I was talking with a lady while she waited to run. She told me that her dog ran with a really famous Spinone a while ago. She didn’t remember the owner’s name, but the Spin’s name was Bert. I smiled; that is my dog! We connected the dots and her dog ran brace with Bert at one of his last runs before retiring. She talked highly about him and was glad to hear he is doing just fine enjoying life.
Bert has a lot of friends and people are always happy to see him. I call him the Amazing Bert because he pleasantly surprises me often just by being himself. I could have written this story on several events in his life, like the lost dog he tracked after a heavy rainstorm, taking third place at our very first field trial, letting my wife Deb know when she is about to have a migraine, or surprising everyone when he received the prestigious Field Legend Award. Each would have been fun to write but today the story I chose to tell my Spinone friends is how the Amazing Bert found me a new church.
I started looking for a church when the one I attended stopped having evening services. I had attended nights so I could help a friend start up his dog training facility. Things were running smoothly for 5 years with both dog training and church. Then there was a Pastor change and night services stopped. I found myself hung up between helping my friend and making it to church; I decided to look for evening services elsewhere. While traveling around our area I kept checking bulletin boards and looking online for places meeting Sunday nights. In February of 2019, I located a church that met Saturday evenings. Just when I was about to give Saturday a try the Amazing Bert found me services on Sunday nights.
We were on our way home from hunting with Bert sitting on the front seat of my truck. While looking out the window he decided to change the radio station by pawing at the buttons. The station changed, he turned around 3 times, laid down, and went to sleep. This is something he has done ever since he was a pup and I find it very amusing. As long as the radio isn’t playing punk rock or opera, whatever is on is fine with me. This day he pawed the buttons and the station changed to a man talking about the Atlantic City Rescue Mission. The Mission takes care of homeless people and this program caught my attention. After a few minutes, it started wrapping up and I found out I was listening to a daily broadcast of “Making it home with Pastor Bob and Marcy” from The Great Commission Baptist Church. At the end, Marcy invited everyone to attend the Great Commission, gave the church address and times they held services; including Sunday evening at 7:00 PM. As she finished talking my truck rolled to a 4 way stop at the same intersection Bert and I go through all the time on our way to, and from the hunting grounds. If I continued straight, we would be home in 5 minutes. By turning right we could drive by this church in 15. I hung a right and started a new and wonderful adventure in my life, brought on by our Spin pawing at the radio.
We drove past the bulletin board and sure enough, this church has evening services. The next day I stopped in, talked with the Secretary and have attended there ever since.
After a while I was sure this church was exactly what I was looking for and decided to join. As part of becoming a member, the Pastor introduced me to the Congregation. While being introduced he had me tell how The Amazing Bert helped me find this church. The story brought smiles and laughs from those in attendance. When I was done Pastor Bob gave me a huge dog biscuit for Bert. As he handed it to me he said, “no one has ever come to this church with a dog story like this one.” The Amazing Bert.