I hate writing about this today because A.) I don’t want Diane (and myself) to start the day off crying and B.) People tend to skip over long blog posts and C.) I don’t want everyone to think I’m a crazy cat person. But I have missed making a post for three straight days for the first time in several years and I think I need to write this even if you don’t feel like you need to read it.
In 2004 or 2005, while my family was attending church at Sistersville First United Methodist, there was a cat outside the church after worship one particular Sunday. It kept running inside the church and inside the funeral home next door to the church every time a door opened. To make a long story short, we took the cat home. We told everyone at the funeral home and at the church if anyone came looking for the cat that we had him. We called him “Bob” because that’s how we roll. Thankfully, nobody came looking for him. And we have no clue how old he was when we first met him.
In 2007 God called me into the ministry and we, along with Bob, moved to Mason, WV. Then in 2013 God called us to move to Short Gap, WV and Bob came here with us. If you’ve ever moved, you know moving can be pretty traumatic. Looking back, I think that throughout both moves Bob was what made the new house feel like ‘home’. Diane always said that cats lower your blood pressure. I always said that Bob raised mine. I was joking. He really was the perfect cat. And he never met a stranger. Anyone who came into our home would leave with cat hair on the legs of their pants because Bob would be doing “figure 8’s” around their legs. Bob’s unconditional love for people was as close to Christ’s unconditional love for people as I’ll ever experience on earth.
Yesterday we had to let Bob go. The vet said he was dying from heart failure. It came on very sudden. He has been a blessing to us for the last 9 or 10 years. I know he was an animal and not a person. I know it’s not like losing one of your kids or brothers or sisters or parents. Yet anyone who has lost a beloved pet knows the pain. While some may trivialize the loss of a pet as ‘just an animal’, the pain of losing an animal that has been living with you for so long can not be so easily disregarded. And God does not trivialize any loss or any pain that you feel. God is there for me and for you in every heartache and heartbreak throughout our lives, until that time that we leave this life to be with Him and only then will there be no more pain and no more tears.