Sunday, September 4, 2016

ALL Flesh Shall See the Salvation of God

Our old dog Lucky was suffering from bone cancer, and the tumor finally became so large and painful that we had to help usher him to Heaven yesterday. It was a terribly difficult decision, but the vet was clear that it was time. He follows on the paws of our other dog, Honeybun, who died just six months ago, also from cancer.

Honeybun was too burdened by a traumatic past, and Lucky too neurotic and socially incompetent for them to have ever quite hit it off. I envisioned them being best friends, playing together all day. That never happened, though they came to an understanding. They usually slept near each other, and Honeybun tolerated Lucky's incessant fawning over her and licking her broken ear until she would emit a low growl, and he backed off.

Both dogs taught me many things, and both had their individual challenges. Lucky was a consummate escape artist. We spent the first 12 years of his life finding new and increasingly ugly ways of barricading him in the huge backyard which was never huge enough for him. He dug, climbed, jumped, or squeezed his way out nearly every day. Neighbors all knew Lucky because they were forever returning him to our house.

Meanwhile, Honeybun had a quick trigger to aggression, probably based on her need to scrape out a living in the wild where we suspect she had been dumped the year or so before we found her. Lucky, clueless to her cues to leave her alone, constantly sought her attention, licking her, or nudging her, or sniffing her. She attempted to kill Lucky several times, until our hard work with a gifted trainer finally bore fruit. (That often hilarious, and harrowing struggle began my author career with my best-selling first book I'm Listening with A Broken Ear.) 

I had to abandon my dreams of them playing together in lieu of just praying they let each other live.

I envision them now restored to what God intended them to be all along. Honeybun no longer has a broken ear or a troubled past that causes aggressive behavior. Lucky no longer feels the need for incessant attention...nor does he want to escape any more. As my sister mentioned to me, he has pulled off the final escape, and where else would he want to go? Maybe Heaven was what he was searching for all along. I see them tumbling and running unimpeded together, perfect and all of us will be if we put our faith in Jesus and enter eternity with Him.

I will see my beloved dogs again. The Bible is filled with references to animals in Heaven. All dogs go to Heaven. If the promise of eternity with Jesus isn't compelling enough, the fact that our dear dogs will be waiting with wagging tails seals the deal for me.

Meanwhile, on my own cancer front, I have finished four weeks of radiation. Week one was uneventful except for the overwhelming fear that I would be melted alive. Week two I got 'folliculitis' which is irritation of hair follicles in the chest/underarm area. Think: itchy hives. Week three I crashed my bike for the first time in thirty five years and broke my rib just under the reconstructed breast. (Yes. It hurt as much as you are imagining.) Week four my dog died. I am anticipating my last two weeks of radiation with fear and joy, knowing God (and my dogs) are in Heaven cheering me onward.

"But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind."
Job 12:7-10

"All flesh shall see the salvation of God."
LUKE 3:6

"And every creature which is in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying. Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever."
Revelation 5:13 KJV

"I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. Is. 11: 6-8

The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, and the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The infant will play near the hole of the cobra, and the young child put his hand into the viper's nest.
Rev. 19:11

The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.
All thy works shall praise thee, O Lord; and thy saints shall bless thee...Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing. 
Psalm 145: 9-10, 16

1 comment:

  1. I read somewhere there is a fable that our animals stand by the pearly gates and judge on who can get through. You're a shoe in.