‘When I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me.’ Micah 7:8 (NKJV)
There are lots of kinds of loss. And it is never easy to experience. It is the greatest heartbreak.
But God has always assured us that He will be us until the end of the age. He will never leave us or desert us. He is our closest friend, closer even than a brother. So why do we suffer so when we experience a loss?
A few short years ago I suffered a loss. My dog, Morgan. Yes, he was just a dog, but he was also my faithful and constant companion for over 15 years. When I came home from anywhere, even if it was just an absence of 15 minutes, he was jumping with joy when I walked into the house. When I was on either a short trip or an extended one, my husband said he lay a few feet away from the door, just watching it. He did not eat much when I was gone. He suffered his own version of loss.
And how I loved him. He was so important to me. He always sat next to me, or on me, or at my feet. He was at the foot of the bed every night. He was truly at his happiest when he was by my side. I took him with me on car trips when I was able to; he was the best traveling companion. He loved the ride, and he loved visiting people and places.
A few years ago his poor body became worn out. And I began experiencing my approaching loss. It is not easy to lose anyone, even our pets. But we go through this for our entire lives. And that is because God has richly blessed us with people and animals, to love and to be loved by, to enjoy life with, to laugh with, and to even cry with. My heart breaks for those who spurn personal relationships. The price of the loss is great, but the memories and enrichment of life is greater still.
My husband and I made the decision to allow Morgan to pass on to glory, painlessly, surrounded by loved ones. I was brave, because of my great love for this special boy of mine. I held him, played with him, sang the silly little songs I had always sung to him. The vet came in and gave him the first shot. I held him close, and whispered to him how I gave thanks to God for him, how special he was. I then sang Amazing Grace. That very grace enveloped me as I cried in my heart. Then he fell asleep in my arms. The vet returned and I went out. The second shot was given. It was over.
I firmly believe that Morgan, as true and real as his heart was, is in Doggy Heaven. And I believe it is somewhere in the vicinity of Jesus. He is Our Hope, and because of that any loss we experience will be healed, we will adjust, and God will give us beautiful memories we can cherish forever. I have those memories, of Morgan, and of so much more. God is grace personified!
‘Weeping may go on all night, but joy comes with the morning.’ Psalm 30:5 (NLT)