Saturday, February 18, 2012

~ "Bless the beasts and the children..."

And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. (Gen 1:28)
On October 7, 1997, our 3 year old German Shepherd, "Lady", was struck by a car and killed.  We were devastated.  Not too long after that, an adorable, fuzzy little black lab named "Samantha" came to live in our house.  She was the last litter for her mother and a welcomed addition to our family.  There were times when she could try your patience (puppies have that way about them) - the accidents on the floor, getting out of the house and running down the street in the snow, just doing what dogs do.  She had enough energy for five dogs.  She eventually calmed down (but she never outgrew the desire to run).  She took off on my twice while in Tennessee and the one thing I learned about Sammy was "don't chase her - follow, but don't chase".  She loved car rides - so that is how you corralled her - you simply took the car, blew the horn and opened the she'd climb.  I could go on and tell the stories of Sammy on vacation at the lake, or the chocolate frosting incident right before attending a work Christmas party...but you get the idea.
God tells us that we have dominion over "every living thing" - dogs included.  Sammy was placed in my care and for the past 14 1/2 years, she has been very well cared for.  She is the Alpha Dog in the family and always will be.  I have been blessed simply by her presence in my life.  With her are moments and memories that are irreplaceable.  But lately, she's been telling me that "it's time".  
The tears have been falling since making the decision yesterday morning.  They stop for a bit, but then when I look at her knowing that her life here is done, they begin again.  When someone you love is sick, or hurting, you want their suffering to end - we pray for healings for our family and friends (and yes, often for our pets).  This time, I know that it is not in God's plan to heal or to lengthen her life.  It is her time to go.  One day, all of my pets will go, as will I, as will you, as will this world our Creator has fashioned for us.  
I praise God this morning for the years and the joys He has given my with Sammy!  There were times when I don't really think I could have made it without my dogs' companionship.  They say that a dog is man's best friend ~ she truly is!  She has been loved and she will be missed.
I'd ask that you continue to keep me and my family in your prayers today as we say good bye to a good friend and family member (yes, family member).  My house will be a bit quieter, a bit emptier and my heart a bit heavier - but my life is full and always will be.  There are many things that I have "failed" at - this is not one of them and for that, I know my Father in Heaven is pleased.  I have succeeded in doing what I was called to do in Genesis 1:28.  I have loved and cared for one of His creatures...Farewell, Sammy, you've been one great dog and I love you!