PEANUT AND SNICKERS – My two little love boys right now.
WILL OUR PETS BE WITH US IN HEAVEN?
All of us who love our pets have probably asked the question, “Will they be with us in heaven?”
The best answer I’ve heard is explained in a book I’m reading now, called Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy. Dietrich Bonhoeffer tells the story himself:
“At 11:00 a.m. there was a knock at my door and a ten-year old boy came into my room with something I had requested from his parents. I noticed that something was amiss with the boy, who is usually cheerfulness personified. And soon it came out: he broke down in tears, completely beside himself, and I could hear only the words: ‘Herr Wolf ist tot’ [Mr. Wolf is dead], and then he cried and cried. ‘But who is Herr Wolf?’
As it turns out, it is a young German shepherd dog that was sick for eight days and had just died a half-hour ago. So the boy, inconsolable, sat down on my knee and could hardly regain his composure; he told me how the dog died and how everything is lost now. He played only with the dog, each morning the dog came to the boy’s bed and awakened him—and now the dog was dead. What could I say?
So he talked to me about it for quite a while. Then suddenly his wrenching crying became quiet and he said: ‘But I know he’s not dead at all.’ ‘What do you mean?’ ‘His spirit is now in heaven.’
So there I stood and was supposed to answer him yes or no. If I said ‘no, we don’t know’ that would have meant ‘no.’ . . . So I quickly made up my mind and said to him: ‘Look, God created human beings and also animals, and I’m sure he also loves animals. And I believe that with God it is such that all who loved each other on earth—genuinely loved each other—will remain together with God, for to love is part of God. Just how that happens, though, we admittedly don’t know.’
You should have seen the happy face on this boy; he had completely stopped crying. ‘So then I’ll see Herr Wolf again when I am dead; then we can play together again’—in a word, he was ecstatic. I repeated to him a couple of times that we don’t really know how this happens. He, however, knew, and knew it quite definitely in thought.
After a few minutes, he said: ‘Today I really scolded Adam and Eve; if they had not eaten the apple, Herr Wolf would not have died.’”
I thought that was a great story and Bonhoeffer’s answer about genuine love and that God is love, was an awesome way to explain what we believe about our pets being in heaven with us.
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