(This column is about Dr. Chuck Blonien, a committed Christ United member and friend to all animals. It is reprinted from my book THE LONG VIEW)
There is a veterinarian in our church who practices a rather touching protocol when he is called upon to euthanize a dog. A friend wrote to tell me that this vet has put two of her beloved dogs down in the past five years. Both times, just before giving them the injection, he kissed them and said, “Save us a place.”
My theological position on this is pretty well known. The Bible tells us that God created everything there is, including our animals and pets. It also tells us that God is love, and much of the New Testament is about love.
As anyone who has ever had a dog for a pet can testify, that relationship really is about love. In fact, most dogs have much to teach us about the ineffable concept of “unconditional love.” Even when your spouse is mad at you, your dog still loves you. Unconditionally. Therefore, dogs go to heaven. Period.
You may be thinking that heaven is going to get real crowded for those of us who are animal lovers. I confess that there are all sorts of practical issues about heaven I haven’t got figured out yet, including multiple marriages, whether or not there really are golf courses, and what to do about crazy Aunt Edna if she’s up there. But I figure these are all minor issues for God, and that I should be focused on the primary task of just making the trip in the first place. On that score it is comforting to know that I’ve sent a few good dogs and horses on ahead who are, hopefully, saving me a place.
Rev. Don Underwood