Estimates put the age of the universe at 15 billion years, the age of the earth at 4.5 billion years, and the time that humans have been around for a few hundred thousand years.  These large time periods are difficult for us to reconcile, but when I teach students I use a number of analogies to help explain them.  For example, if we compress the age of the earth into a 24 hour day, humans have been around for the last 4-6 seconds.  Alternatively, for my football brethren, if the age of the earth is represented as the length of a football field, the time that humans have been around would correspond to the thickness of a blade of grass.  Width, not length.

Christians see God as being outside of time, but many (like me) also believe there is a temporal aspect to His nature that enables Him to experience Creation as it unfolds.  This surely seems to be the picture we get of God in the Bible.

All of this has got me to thinking about God and his interaction with nature for the 23 hours, 59 minutes, and 55 seconds before we showed up.  Can and does God interact with animals besides us?  Do other animals have relationships with Him?  I know that we all think we’re special because we were “created in God’s image” but what was God doing in relation to His Creation before us?  Perhaps this line of thinking can help to illuminate Paul’s thoughts on all creation groaning for its redemption.  And perhaps, maybe all dogs do go to heaven…