It was a rough weekend (yes, I know it's Wednesday and the weekend was days ago). After a long family discussion Friday evening, prayer individually and as a group, followed by more discussion Saturday morning, we decided it was time to put our Golden Retriever down. He was struggling to breathe and hadn't slept in days. A tumor was growing under his face and making him very uncomfortable, though we do not believe he was in any pain.
Needless to say, Sunday was a long day. Our vet is a good friend and an active member at our church. He came to the house and was a very kind, respectful participant in the funeral and burial. We were all crying and crying. This is the first family dog we've had to put down.
I'm grateful that we were all able to say goodbye. I'm grateful that we had a few days to prepare ourselves. We did not rush into it and it didn't happen suddenly. God walked through every step with us - from the timing of the illness to His peace which was present throughout. When you are walking with God, fully submitted to Him and committed to His purposes in your life, you notice Him in events like this one.
We see how He timed it. Popo was put down about a week before school starts, giving us all something new to focus on while dealing with the grief.
We see how He controlled it - Popo was not in pain, only uncomfortable and exhausted.
We see how He provides you with the right people - our vet is a patient friend who came to our house unhesitatingly, we did not have to take Popo to a hospital room.
We see how He influenced it - we all felt peaceful about the decision. There was unity in our family and in our hearts, and we were sad but not disturbed. His peace flooded each of us.
Perhaps some of you would say these things are lucky or coincidental, but I choose to believe that it's my loving God, making a difficult thing into a smooth transition. Healing our hearts before the wound was even inflicted.
I will praise Him forever.