Monday, November 4, 2013

Losing Bonnie

Last Thursday was a tough night at the Nease House. After dropping my daughters off at the high school football game, I drove home to find our sweet kitten, Bonnie, caught in the top of the closed garage door. I suppose she was hiding on top of the door while it was open (she must have jumped up from the top of the car onto the door and was hiding there.) When I opened the door, she fell and she was not moving. Our dog, Max, was trying hard to lick her and move her with his nose, but I knew it was too late. She was gone and I was absolutely devastated.

My heart sank as I looked at her brother, Clyde, who was looking for her and already seemed to know something was wrong and then I thought about how I had to tell my sweet daughters about the accident. My heart hasn't been this broken in a very long time. I'm so thankful for my mom and step-father, who were there in an instant. He took Bonnie and laid her to rest. Words cannot describe my grief.

Later that night, when the girls came home from the game, I had to break the news. Of course, they were devastated and I held Kennedy as my mom held Peyton and we all just sobbed. What a horrible thing to live through. I kept praying God would give us peace and I knew it was coming - but at that moment it was pure grief.

Almost immediately, Peyton remembered that right before they left for the game, Kennedy had taken some pictures of Peyton holding Bonnie (they are the pictures I've posted here on the blog). They were beautiful pictures and immediately, the peace that passes understanding flooded us all as we looked at the photos and realized God gave Peyton an opportunity to say goodbye to her sweet friend. These pictures are absolutely precious to us.

A couple of nights later, I was talking to Peyton and she was doing surprisingly well. She mentioned she was feeling peace about it all and that she could tell that was something that God was doing in her to help her through it. When something bad happens, I try to teach my kids to look for the "God hugs" - those moments where you see God working in spite of the pain. She knew this was something good that was coming from it and she even said that on Wednesday, the day before the accident, she was prompted to pray for peace for our family for some reason. She was experiencing that "peace that passes all understanding" that God talks about in the Bible for the first time. She knew He was real and her heart was healing a lot quicker than she ever imagined it could.

Aside from the amazing lesson God is teaching us about peace that passes understanding, we have also learned that with God, we can get through anything - especially when we are together. We've learned not to take a moment for granted with one another because life is fleeting. We've learned that grief comes in waves, and you can never determine when it will hit, but you can always know it will subside and when someone is there to hug you through it, it really helps. We've learned that God is faithful and He is true to His Word. We've also learned that when the horror of the moment tries to revisit in our minds, we can picture Bonnie, purring loudly and rubbing against the sweet feet of Jesus. That's my favorite.

Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:7


Anonymous said...

Oh my heavens...I'm so sorry this happened to you. I'm not sure if you believe animals go to heaven...I know some Christians do not but I believe God to be LOVE and his word means what it says. One day he will renew ALL CREATURES...I believe that means every creature he ever made. This gives me great comfort each day because I lost my dearest companion 3 years ago and though I miss him with all of my heart, I know that he is being held by the father who loves him. I know God gives us animals as a gift to show us his immense LOVE. Please be at peace knowing this and many blessings...Hugs Mary Tilley

Leslie Nease said...

Mary, thank you so very much! You are precious. I DO believe animals go to heaven - knowing God's character for one, and knowing that Jesus will be riding a white horse when He returns. ;) xxoo

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