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LINES UPON JAVA'S ILLNESS

What meaning for Java’s life
When sight for those lustrous eyes has gone,
Sensations ceased and his purring voice been stilled?

And what the import for me
Of those hugs and tickles, and love bestowed
In silly words like lovers speak?

And what for God of his gentle life—
Lived out in peace’s ambience? Had he but known
He could have shed his fears like fur.

Beyond, Brilliance shines
And lambent answers.

© Michael A.G. Haykin, 2007
    

Your poem reminds me of the words of Christ: “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.” The hymn writer likewise asserts, “His eye is on the sparrow.” A remarkable truth, not only as it applies to His children, but also a remarkable truth as it applies to the animal kingdom. Although we enjoy our pets and benefit from other animals in this world, they all belong to Him. Ultimately He cares for and provides for all his creation. It is only because of humanity and our sin that death has entered the world and affected all of creation. Even as death is unnatural for humans, it is unnatural for animals as well. The only difference is we, who know the Son, can shed our “fears like fur.”

We were made to live forever and enjoy all creation forever. Death is not a “natural” experience for us or for anything, despite the 1:1 ratio—one death per one living creature—in our current fallen world experience. A dying pet is another reminder of our need for Christ to return and put a final end to death and sorrow.

If I may presume your poem is autobiographical, then my sympathies to you and your family. If His eye is on the sparrow, then His eye is also on Java. Would He not especially care for a pet that delights His children? The "meaning for Java's life" is the purpose God made him, like all creation. To God be the glory!

Jeremy

P.S.: Lovely poem, as are the others below. You are a true Renaissance man!

Thank you, brother.

Java is one of our siamese cats. He nearly died when Alison and I were away in Florida. Victoria, our daughter, rose to the occasion, and with directions from us, took him to the vet and cared for him. He is still with us, but it seemed he was gone last week when io began to write this. He has 66% renal failure and is on a special diet. We shall see God's good and gracious hand displayed whatever the outcome.

Michael.

Thank you for this beautiful poem. I just lost my 16-year-old dog, Angel, on Friday morning, from renal failure. I miss her. I like to think we will play together again one day. I decided to let her die a so-called "natural death" when this scripture occured to me, seemingly in answer to my prayed question: "And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father."

Wow, when I first read the poem, I thought that Java had died. I'm glad to hear that Victoria had her wits about her. That would have been sad indeed.

Dear Michael,

Apparently you are not aware of the most recent Hebrew word studies on "serpent" in Genesis. It's becoming apparent that the word should properly be translated "cat". Thus the OT and Hebrew men at Southern are starting to worry about you...

With fond memories of spending a Lord's Day afternoon deep in Baptist History,

Ron

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