I just received a message from our daughter-in-law. They are taking their boxer, Max, to the vet today to be put down. He developed cancer recently and has gone downhill rapidly. He woke up in pain this morning, and they don't want him to suffer anymore. They got the dog when our son was in medical school in Houston after a break in and shooting in the complex where they were living at the time. Since then Max has loved and protected his family with all his big heart. I'd never been around a boxer before, and I was impressed with how gentle and patient he was with our grandkids. He would walk carefully and stop in mid-stride when they crawled underneath. More recently he has put up with the attention of our little granddaughter, who has alternately tugged on him and dropped food to him from her high chair. She's not yet 2 and will not understand where her big friend has gone. I suspect this will be harder for her 5 year old brother as it will be his first experience of death and loss. I pray God will give me the right words when he wants to talk about it. We're going down for his birthday party this weekend. I think I'll tell him that I know that God is love, and I know that the God who created Max loved him as much as his family did. I may also tell him if he asks that Max has gone to a place where he will never be in pain again. Sounds like heaven to me.
Grace and Peace,