My family is experiencing a new epoch right now. We have lost the first of our pets (at least any that they remember and are close to). I joke about all our pets and getting rid of them (we have 8 of them too), but everyone knows it is a joke. Because everyone knows that I really make all those kind of decisions and if weren't for me we would not have all these pets anyway. Daddy is the head, but I am the neck (at least about the sappy stuff).
Still, my kids are sad, and they are grieving in different ways. Just like they are different; their ways of experiencing life are different. That is what makes life so good. Coco loved us all the time literally. He was by far the most affectionate animal ever. The kids pray, they cry and all of us have realized we did not love Coco enough when he was here.
There is the rub. Now that I have moved into a time when people I love die (my dad, my babies, my friends' babies), I know that life hurts and when someone is gone, truly gone, you never have that moment again. You know the moment. The one where you could have hugged one more time or said something in your heart about how much you truly want them to know Jesus. Because, though we grieve for a cat, it doesn't hurt like saying good bye for eternity.
I have friends that are adopting right now in a far away world. I have thought many times how much I should have offered her a kinder word in the last year. How much her life is changing, and she will need a lot of support. She is ushering in 3 children who without her might never know Jesus.
It seems that we must look to Jesus to do great things, and we must never forget to love people where they are. If they have Jesus or not, they still need a Savior every day, every moment.
So the lesson I learned from this cat was more than just pets are kind of a pain. Pets are part of who we are because we love to love something that loves us - no matter what we do or don't do. Losing Coco reminds me again that life is short and every moment you have someone to love is a gift of the greatest proportion from a God who gave us the One He loved the most.