I packed up his bowl and put away his bed. His leash is in the garage and his normal place to sleep on the floor is vacant. Our hearts are empty. I still think I see him from time to time, out of the corner of my eye. Reality hits and I realize it is only a dark blanket on the ground or shadow in a corner. Oh, how we miss him.
On Wednesday morning we buried our dear friend in the back yard. Reality hit my husband as he laid him in the grave. Such a hard day. I watched him as long as I could until the dirt completely covered him and my friend was out of my sight forever. We made a cast of Brutus’s paw and imbedded his I.D. tag in it. It made the kids feel better to have this lasting memory of our special friend. When it dries, we will take it to his grave and place it by his collar .
To some of you reading this, you may not know the love of an animal like we did with Brutus. You may think this is just overkill. But for many of you, this hits home. Your heart has been ripped open by the love of a furry friend, a child with 4 paws. Brutus was my child and he has forever changed me and my family.
The love you receive from a pet is such a beautiful picture of Christ’s love for us, completely unconditional. He gives freely and expects nothing in return. There is nothing we can do that will change the love that He has for us. Even when a dog has been mistreated and unloved, it still has a desire to completely love all over its owner if just given the chance. Brutus was unconditional love all the time.
I have been blown away with the outpouring of love from friends far and near. Cards, gifts and phone calls have poured in. Some were sad for us, but many were sad for themselves. They loved Brutus and Brutus loved them. I heard how husbands and wives were called when they heard the news. Chores came to a stop and some found themselves sitting in a heap of tears over “their” loss. I always knew Brutus was special, but I had no idea how many people he touched. What an amazing gift we were blessed with.
In my last post I told you that Brutus had no more left to give, but in his last moments with me his loyalty was clear. I knew that Brutus was unhappy with his life because we no longer seemed to give him comfort. We would sit with him and he would tolerate it for a minute and then he would move to another place. I think he was in such pain that he just wasn’t comfortable wherever he was. As we waited in the vet’s exam room, Brutus looked at me and I think he could see that I was hurting. He came over and leaned himself against me in a way that showed me that he wanted to comfort me if he could. Our last moments together were precious and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world, even though it was gut wrenching. His final act of love was to bring comfort.
God’s most precious act of love was to pour Himself out in a way that hurt and was gut wrenching, but showed His unconditional love for us. “But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us!” Romans 5:8. Never forget that unconditional love that our Lord has for you. His heart leaps when He sees you and He desires to be near to you always. Let Him pour over you today. He misses you.