BELLEVILLE - Jenny Hagemeyer, of Belleville, decided she never wanted to have another dog after the death of her Lhasa Apso more than 10 years ago. That is, until she met Danny.
Hagemeyer, an inspirational speaker and founder of Promise Land Ministries, recently published a book, "Lessons from Danny," detailing the life - and brush with death - of the small blonde Shih Tzu who found his way into her heart.
It was sometime in 2007 when Hagemeyer's husband, Fred, had the desire to get another dog.
Sentinel photo by BUFFIE BOYER
Jenny Hagemeyer sits with her dog, Danny, on Monday at their home in Belleville.
“Lessons from Danny,”?is shown. The book tells the story of Danny, a Shih Tzu mix dog that became ill and was healed. The story is told from his perspective and was published by Jenny Hagemeyer, inspirational speaker and founder of Promise Land Ministries.
Sentinel photo by
"I tried to ignore him ... I thought maybe it'll go away," Jenny said, laughing.
Fred persisted, despite Jenny's hesitation to become attached to another animal that would just break her heart again.
"One night I was talking to the Lord about it," she recalled. "He said, 'You didn't ask me.'"
It was that evening Hagemeyer felt the Lord encouraging her to let Fred seek his new companion, she said.
That's when the couple met Danny - a dog Fred calls his "two-time loser." Somehow, Danny made his way to the SPCA twice before the Hagemeyers brought him home.
"I call him our little angel from heaven," Jenny said. "He doesn't show his teeth, he doesn't growl at you."
Danny greets everyone with a toy and a kiss, she said.
In 2012, the charming canine became ill. Jenny said the veterinarian found a mass on his stomach the size of a softball and said Danny wouldn't live longer than a week.
Her new book, "Lessons from Danny," tells the story of Danny's healing from his point of view.
"After all, God spoke through a donkey's mouth in the Bible," Jenny said.
Though the story is told from a dog's point of view, Jenny said people can relate to the trials in his life. A reoccurring theme in his story, she said, is his love for "his daddy," Fred.
"(Danny) just loves his daddy ... he loves me, but believe me, he loves his daddy," Jenny said. "He is so connected to his daddy's heart."
She explained that God has the same desire for His people.
"Our daddy, God, yearns to have an intimate personal relationship with us every day that shakes off the fear, worry, anxiety, bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness," she said.
Danny's story is one that will touch the hearts of everyone, even those who aren't fond of dogs or haven't accepted Jesus Christ into their lives, Jenny explained.
"There's a lot of humor in this, and it's a testimony. I believe testimonies are powerful," she said.
Readers may realize that "if God can do something with them, he can do something with me," she explained.
Jenny Hagemeyer will hold a book signing from 1-3 p.m. March 29 at Friendship Book Store in Burnham. Her book, "Lessons from Danny," is available at the store and online at Amazon, iUniverse and Barnes and Noble in paperback and e-reader options.
Hagemeyer said she plans to incorporate the book into Bible studies held at her home in Belleville. She said classes tentatively will begin in September.
For more information, search Jenny Hagemeyer on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube or visit the Promise Land Ministries blog at promiselandministries.wordpress.com.