Comfort for those who mourn the animals they loved
Image via WikipediaA month ago our duck pen was visited by a predator. That was terrible. It was the first time we had forgotten to lock them up for the night. One duck was killed. It seemed wonderful later on that a friend of mine wanted to find a new home for his two Indian Runner Ducks. We had lost one but ended up with two more. We had four birds, 3 runners and one Khaki Campbell, our reliable egg layer. The Campbell survived the earlier attack.
She didn't survive last night's attack.
The predator pushed the cinder blocks out of the way and got in the duck house and chewed her and the newcomers up. I never found one carcass, presumably carried off for pups or kits, but I had to pick up two more. It was a brutal sight and made breakfast difficult going down.
Image via WikipediaNorbert, our male who survived the first attack, survived this one as well, but bloodied with a limp leg. He was named after Hagrid's pet dragon. He's a tough duck.
My children were so upset last time. They are, unfortunately, more hardened this time. But they still ask why. I have no answers, just a hope. I hope for heaven, where Jesus brings peace to the animal kingdom and between humans and animals.
When Jesus' kingdom is described in Isaiah 11, part of the good news is this interaction, starting at verse 6.
1 A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse;
from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
2 The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him—
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of power,
the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord—
3 and he will delight in the fear of the Lord.
He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes,
or decide by what he hears with his ears;
4 but with righteousness he will judge the needy,
with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth.
He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth;
with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.
5 Righteousness will be his belt
and faithfulness the sash around his waist.
6 The wolf will live with the lamb,
the leopard will lie down with the goat,
the calf and the lion and the yearlinga together;
and a little child will lead them.
7 The cow will feed with the bear,
their young will lie down together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox.
8 The infant will play near the hole of the cobra,
Image by Thomas Hawk via Flickr
and the young child put his hand into the viper’s nest.
9 They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,
for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea. (NIV)
Isaiah reaffirms this peace in His kingdom later on in Isaiah 65.
17 “Behold, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind.
18 But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
and its people a joy.
19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem
and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more.
20 “Never again will there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not live out his years;
he who dies at a hundred
will be thought a mere youth;
he who fails to reacha a hundred
will be considered accursed.
21 They will build houses and dwell in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
the works of their hands.
23 They will not toil in vain
or bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the Lord,
they and their descendants with them.
24 Before they call I will answer;
while they are still speaking I will hear.
25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
Image by talekinker via Flickr
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
but dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord. (NIV)
Our best day on earth can never hold a candle to our worst day in heaven. In the new heaven and new earth death, our enemy, will not be present.
Isaiah 25:8 says he will swallow up death forever.
The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears
from all faces;
he will remove the disgrace of his people
from all the earth.
The Lord has spoken. (NIV)
John the Revelator repeats this promise twice.
Revelation 7:17 For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes. (NIV)
Revelation 21:4 He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. (NIV)
Our worst day on earth, makes us long for heaven the most. Come quickly Lord Jesus.