The last several days I coudn't find one of my barn cats, one that was special to me. You see, little Blackie was born approximately eight years ago in the closet of our RV. We were temporarily residing there while our home was being finished. We had one cat in residence, Penelope, but the other cats were, well, barn cats.
One Sunday morning at 5 am I heard a very meek "meow" coming from the closet where Penelope had a sleeping box. I complained about the noise and rolled over to go back to sleep. My wife, however, got up and checked and I heard her laugh. Rolling over, I found that my love had found a freshly born kitten, Blackie, with more on the way. We ended up with a total of four.
To this day I don't know how a tom got in the RV, but I assure you this wasn't the "immaculate conception." And from the coloring we knew that the father was Brother, one of our toughest, most determined cats.
And that brings the story back to missing Blackie. She always was waiting in the barn for me at morning breakfast time. The first thing I always did was to feed the cats before getting the horse feed ready. I repeated the same routine action in late afternoon, and still no Blackie. In all eight years that had never happened.
My wife started walking around the farm property calling and looking, as I had done earlier. Suddenly, I heard her let out a cry and she came walking up cradling Blackie in her arms. Blackie's body was stiff with rigor; she had been dead probably since the night before.
There were no bite marks, no blood, so it appeared that she had been crushed. I guess that it was a coyote from the woods next door, and that Blackie had escaped from his jaws and had enough strength to make it back to the safety of our farm. Cats usually try to get back home when they know they are about to die.
As I dug a grave for her next to the graves of other past deceased four legged family, I shed a tear for my good and dear little friend. She had always been loyal, did a great job of keeping pests and rodents away, and requested little in return, just some food and a little love.
But as the cycle of life goes on, we have several new young barn cats and there is one little fellow who seems destined to take her place. Recon has already started paying special attention to me as if he knows he has a new and important job. Only time will tell.
Why do I write about this? Certainly not to bore you, but to give living evidence of the way life works. We live until we die, and we never know when that will be. And of particular importance to we humans is to know that we must live every day like it is the last one. Enjoy the miracle of life and the many blessing that God has given us, and always remember that He is responsible. Love those around you and do what is right, because you live on in others based upon the memories you leave behind. And if you also believe, as I do, that Christ Jesus died for me (and you), you never have to worry about death.
Some people don't think that animals go to heaven because they don't have a soul. I don't know about the mechanics of the argument, but I do believe that I will see these dear friends again just like I will see my human family and friends, and it will be a joyous and wonderful occasion at the side of the Father.
And little Blackie, know that you will not be forgotten.