This won’t be for everyone. I know that. In fact, if this had been written early in my life, it would have no value.
That, however, was before Mercy…my first dog. Mercy was with me. She was an English Cocker…and those lonely nights…when reality is harsh and unforgiving and…well, you can fill this in…somehow Mercy knew she was needed. In a single bound. She’d leap up on my bed and lick away the tears.
I remember…the night when Diane and I were in Issaquah…was the ministry time to minister with churches and clergy in Washington and northern Idaho and Alaska [I told the Board that I would be pleased to go to Anchorage…during salmon season. Yikes. Talk about self-serving ego taking over!] The vet cleaned Mercy’s teeth, then gave us the most unwelcome report…Mercy had cancer of the jaw. Surgery was an option, but probably not a great delay to the inevitable.
Then the night I will never forget…Mercy was barely breathing. To the 24-hour vet clinic. The decision to euthanize her was not negotiable. Painful…to the bones of our souls…but had to be done.
I’ll never forget it. As Mercy panted her last, the vet gave the shot. Heart-breaking for Diane and me. What to do? All I could think to do. Put my hand on her head and gave the benediction. I really couldn’t care less if that lacked any kind of theological verity. It was the best I could do to send Mercy on her way…and tell her she meant…and would continue to mean…the world to Diane and me.
Fast forward to this morning, January 28, 2016. Writing this blog…and in a moment my two buddies…the most loyal in the world, will come into my home office and take their self-chosen positions…Caleb our Cavalier will perch on the chair looking out into the world…and Faith, our English Cocker, will wait on the rug…until…it’s time!
Caleb will announce that by tapping on my leg…their voices are very clear, “All right, Dad. Time to take you on a walk.” Yes, indeed.
Will be back shortly…and get back into the novel, “The Lemon Drop Didn’t Melt.” About 30% finished…but no matter down deep. Down deep what really matters is Faith and Caleb are more than biblical roots…Faith the link with God and Caleb, that incredible scout for Moses who never said about the future, “There are giants in the land to which we’re headed…and we seem to ourselves as grasshoppers.” [‘Tis in Numbers…a great story that preaches itself.] On no terms would Caleb be a grasshopper. Never.
As I started…this blog won’t mean much to some of you. I accept that. But. I ask…take a few moments and think of the person who means the most to you. Who has “wiped away your tears and will never leave you…in sickness and in health, in plenty and in want…an abiding friend.” And let them know…they make a difference for the good in your life…and in your heart.
Meet Caleb Miller:
Meet Faith Miller