When God created the universe, death did not exist. Life abounded. There were not predators and no prey. All lived in the Garden of Eden with every need provided: food, water, and shelter. Life was perfect.
Then man sinned. He ate of the forbidden tree, the Tree of Knowledge of good and evil. God cursed man, banishing him from the Garden, bringing death to all. Hence, all creation suffers because of man’s sin.
When I held my dying dogs in my arms, I blamed myself for their pain, suffering, and death. I look at my cats, all of whom are aging rapidly, and think, “They are gonna die because of me”. All innocent creatures who live in the moment that God gave us to care for and we are completely incapable of caring for them. I feel like I let them down when they die.
My kids and I have been reading a lot of books about animals. Extinct animals and endangered animals come up a lot. For example, the tiger. One of the most magnificent animals God has created and we kill them for their coats and gall bladders. So few left…
I just read on line how only three northern white rhinos are in existence today–all killed by man for their horns. Their horns! It would be like killing humans for their hair.
Extinct animals: the Dodo bird, the Passenger pigeon, the Tasmanian tiger, the Great Auk, the Baiji White Dolphin, Steller’s Sea Cow, the West African Black Rhino, the Pinta Island Tortoise–all at the hands of man.
Almost extinct animals: The Javan Rhinoceros, Hawaiian Monk Seal, the Mountain Gorilla, the Island Fox, the Bactrian Camel, Philippine Eagle, California Condor, Amur Leopard, Sumatran Rhino, Vaquita, Kakapo, Iberian Lynx, Siamese Crocodile, and so many, many more.
Yet in the midst of this I see God. I see how God created us and everything to reflect Him and His greatness. No where is this more miraculous than in the birth of a newborn baby–human or animal. This is all despite our sin.
This makes me yearn for heaven and Jesus to come again–to end the pain and the suffering and the sin of man who cannot stop sinning without Jesus.
Death is the hardest part of life in my opinion. Not necessarily my own death because once I’m gone it doesn’t affect me. Death of those around us since we have to go on living…
I pray to enjoy those around me while I can. To not take one moment for granted. To hold my kitties a little tighter. To kiss my kids more. To spend more time with my family. To do what I can to stop the death of endangered species (by not buying their products number one) and supporting those capable of lending aid. And yes, for Jesus to come again–the ultimate end to this Fallen World.