As in The Days of Noah

From the account of Noah in Genesis 6:5, we read “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

And in Proverbs 12:15, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.”

About 2 weeks ago, I heard of a video on the internet of teens filming a drowning man. Rather than helping him, they laugh and jeered at him until he died.

Friends on Facebook commented they couldn’t believe the world had gotten so evil. How could the teens do such a thing? My response was, “When you discard the basis for truth and faith, what do you expect to happen. When the distinction between right and wrong no longer exist, as Proverbs states, the way of a fool is right in his own eyes. Since I was very young, I have watched as our American society has taken on the religion of relativism – what is right for you is right and what is right for me is right even if they are diametrically opposed to each other. Live and let live.

The local municipality was looking for a law to charge the teens with some crime. I thought what a sad indictment against our country. Rather than teaching our children right from wrong, we must legislate it into them later. These kids didn’t understand what they were doing was against all sensibility. They didn’t value life. Folks, we have failed. We think we are building self-esteem by letting the children do what they want when in actuality, self-esteem comes from a solid basis of understanding right from wrong.

We are being forced to remove wrong in our lives. We are no longer permitted to have the most visible sign of the 10 commandments in public places because it might offend someone. Hello, that was the purpose of the 10 commandments? Don’t you think the Israelites were offended when Moses brought them down from the mount? Of course they were. They are there to shock our sensibilities into understanding right and wrong, life and death, good and evil.

I thank God Almighty for River of Life Church where the teachings are biblically based and the difference between right and wrong are taught. We learn not all actions are right. We are not shackled by the politically correct religion of relativism where everything is right. If everything is right in my eyes, then why the need for Jesus Christ to die for me?

Every time I bring my tithe and offerings, I know that every penny is going to further the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Good News of Salvation regardless if that penny pays the electric bill so we have lights, the heating oil so we have heat, or repairs so we have a comfortable place to worship.

Every time someone accepts Jesus Christ for salvation, I had a part in that.

Every time someone receives a healing, I had a part in that.

Every time some gets another meal provided by the church, I had a part in that.

Every time someone receives the baptism of the Holy Spirit, I had a part in that.

Every time someone has a Word from the Lord, I had a part in that.

Every time a child learns more about Christ and the difference between right and wrong in Children’s Church, I had a part in that.

Every time the word is preached from this pulpit, I had a part in that.

Every time someone from anywhere in the world sees a service broadcast, I had a part in that.

Offering time is a time of celebration. And I have a lot to celebrate.

I don’t just plunk my money into the bag. I think about what that money does.

Think about it. What is offering time for you? A mundane ritual or a time of celebration?


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved

Freedom from Tyranny

This being the 4th of July weekend when we celebrate the birth of the United States of America, I have been thinking about the concept of independence and freedom.

One of the definitions for freedom is the absence of subjection to foreign domination or despotic (tyrannical) government.

Romans 8:2 states “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.”

Sin and death are definitely despotic or tyrannical governments. A fatal sentence on our heads. And what is the law of sin and death:

Romans 3:19-20: “Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

The law of sin and death is guilt before God and guilt before God is eternal death.

Here is the interesting point: Freedom from the law of sin and death is only valid if you know about it. A prisoner in an unlocked jail cell who doesn’t know the door is open is just as trapped as a prisoner in a locked cell. Until the prisoner learns the door is unlocked can he escape the confines of the cell bars.

Until we realize Jesus has destroyed the law of sin and death, we remain its victims. And that is the purpose of missions – to tell the good news Jesus has unlocked the cells but He needs us to reach them.

Without our mission dollars, our missionaries cannot spread the good news the cell door of sin and death is unlocked and they are free through Christ Jesus. What a privilege it is to be part of the Great Commission in such a tangible way.


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved

Peter Walks on the Water

Matt 14:25-31: Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea.  And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!’ And they cried out for fear.

But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”

And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.”

So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus.  But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!”

And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him.


The part where Peter walked on the water really stuck out. The Bible says Peter WALKED.

It was the 4th watch. Probably the sun was just starting to break. Between the dim light and the wind and waves, Jesus was far enough from the boat making it hard for the disciple to recognize him. Let’s say Jesus was at least 25 yards from their boat. That means at least 25 steps. When Peter walked on the water, he had to take at least 25 steps to be within arms reach of Jesus. The Bible says Jesus reached out and caught Peter. Peter started out strong but “petered” out.

I see a lot of Peter in me. Maybe you see some of Peter in you. Start out strong. Life always buffeting us, we don’t notice, then it weakens our convictions.

In November, we pledge our support to missions. We state our monthly amount we will allocate to the various missionaries around the world. January comes and we boldly write the first checks. February, we are still going strong and place our money in as the offering goes by. March the dishwasher breaks and the missions money sticks to our fingers just a bit longer than before. April, we need new tires for the car. May, college tuition is due. The winds of living start to press in. We weaken in our conviction. We start out walking. We start out strong. Then, we notice life.

In Galatians 6:9-10, we read, “And let us not be weary in well-doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. So then, as we have opportunity, let us work that which is good toward all men, and especially toward them that are of the household of the faith.”


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved

Coming and Going

Jesus spoke about coming and going… coming and going.  I would like to speak to you about coming and going.

In Matthew 11:28, Jesus says, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Does anybody here labor? Raise your hand if you labor.

He wants us to come to him. Why? So we can experience his love, joy, rest, …. And Him.

Many times, as I am teaching my college students, I try to relate an experience to them, but they don’t really get it, because they have not experienced something similar in life yet. They haven’t been laid off. For most, they have not been married, had children, or graduated from college. They haven’t bought a house or experienced the joy of maintaining that house. As a result, they can’t turn around and tell others about an experience they haven’t had.

Jesus wants us to experience Him so we can tell others about His love, peace, joy, and rest.

So, he tells us to come. Then he tells us to go.

In Mark 16:15, He says, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.”

“But how can I go Lord? I have a job, a house, kids to raise, people to meet, and so many other things.”

Of course, Paul adds his two cents. In Romans 10:14 “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?”

That’s the ticket. We, who labor, go through supporting our missions. Sometimes, I feel that is a cop-out. I’m mean, it’s easy to plunk some money in the basket and say my part is done. But what does my $5, $10 or $20 per month really do? Can it really have any effect on someone? Does it really have any eternal value. As I see our monthly missionary videos, I see how I am impacting the kingdom of God.

The journey to one thousand souls saved starts with a single step. A single step of faith. A step of faith of giving my monthly pledge.


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved

Resurrection Day

As I thought during Good Friday and the events that took place almost 2000 years ago – the humiliation, scourging, crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ, I also considered His resurrection three days later. I decided to read the Biblical recordings made at the time of the events to place myself in context. As I read over Matthew’s account, I read some verses I had read many times but seemed to have glanced over in the past. This time, the verses seem to reveal themselves to me in a new light.

Matthew 27:50-53 KJV

Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

Wait. What? Let me read that again. “And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.”

I started wondering. Jesus Christ rose from death in such victory and power that other dead people came out of the grave and “appeared to many” as well. That is power.

Pontius Pilate, a bit concerned about one man rising from the dead, now had a whole gaggle of folks walking around. These weren’t zombies, these were friends and relatives of the towns people.

Imagine, sitting at breakfast sipping your Earl Grey and eating a wafer, when Uncle Harry decides to join you. Of course, you know Uncle Harry because you buried him yourself 10 years ago. And here he is eating and drinking with you. And maybe his wife MaryLou came too.

The Bible is not clear how many rose that day, but my guess, there were many. Christ doesn’t do things half-way. And the Bible says they appeared to many. Pilate had a real problem on his hands. Overnight, the size of the town could have easily doubled or tripled. Imagine how energized the living people must have been. FoxNews, CNN, MSNBC, and even Bloomberg would have been reporting “live from the epicenter of the rising.”

Ronaldo Rivera: “Harry, I understand you’re one of those dead people who is now alive. How do you explain that?”

Harry: “Well, Ronaldo. I can’t. I was sitting in Paradise waiting for the promised one, the one who would liberate us from death. The next thing I know, Jesus Christ comes by and says, ‘follow me. It’s time to go.’ And here I am, eating wafers and sucking down some Earl Grey with my nephew. That’s just crazy man, crazy.”

Ronaldo: “MaryLou, you were with Harry there in Paradise. Tell me, what did you experience?”

MaryLou: “This whole thing is surreal. Paradise wasn’t bad. We had 3 meals a day, didn’t have to work, perfect temperature, no laundry, nice house, but we knew it wasn’t God’s best for us. We knew we were in holding pattern until Christ rose from the dead. He did. We did. And this is just a lay-over before we take the final leg to the Promised Land – Heaven.”

Ronaldo: “Well, you heard here first, folks. Back to you Ginny in New York. This is Ronaldo Rivera reporting live from Jerusalem.”

Imagine being one of those people. I was dead and now alive. Wow. I lived. I died. I saw the other side. And now I’m here again. I chuckled and said to myself, “I hope this isn’t Ground Hog Day, all over again. I passed this way once and thought I had a one-way ticket out.” Apparently, and empirically proven and witnessed by many, there is life after death. And because the Bible says it is appointed to man to die once, and I already did that, I can’t die again. Go ahead, Pontius Pilot, take your best shot, but I’m not dying again.

Many seem to diminish the works of Christ because they didn’t see His miracles or resurrection. How do we know His tomb was empty? How do we know He actually rose from the dead? We know because of the historical accountings just as we believe Leif Erickson was the first known European to discover North America – through historical accountings. Or any other historical event. Christ showed Himself to many. Leif didn’t do that. It was simply recorded in some ancient manuscript he landed in North America. Christ was seen by many. And on top of that, to put the icing on the cake, He raised many more from the dead who showed themselves to many.

I always thought only Jesus Christ rose that day and that was enough for me to believe. But add the possibly of a few thousand more and the data speaks for itself. You can’t discount that. Unless, of course, you discount Leif Erickson ever lived, Alexander the Great conquered, etc.

Yes, Resurrection Day is the greatest day in all of history. There will never be another day like it. Only the Rapture of the Saints will come close to it, but if it were not for Resurrection Day, there would be no Rapture Day.

Jesus Christ – The Risen King – The Almighty God – My Lord and Savior.

I look forward to Your Return Lord.


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved

Good Friday

It is a day of contrasts. We call it good, yet the most horrific event occurred – the crucifixion of the only sinless, most innocent man to ever live.

It is the worst day in history yet the greatest day for our souls.

It was the day Jesus Christ was humiliated, beaten, tortured, crucified and died.

It was the day our souls were liberated from sin and death.

Darkness filled the sky that day. The darkness was so thick, light from a torch or fire couldn’t escape it. The earth shook with such violence, the temple veil was ripped in two. The pain of His death was so severe, even the rocks cried out in agony.

Yet, we call it Good. Why do we call it Good?

Some say it is because Good comes from a root of the word God. Etymologist, those who study the origin of words, find no connection. The Catholic Encyclopedia suggests German for Good Friday is Gottes Freitag, but according to linguist Ben Zimmer – no relations that I know of – it is really Karfreitag or Sorrowful Friday – probably more appropriate for the occasion. No, I don’t speak German.

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, an antiquated meaning for Good is Holy, which seems to fit the best. It is Holy Friday. It is Good Friday.

On this day, let us ponder how Jesus was beaten for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement of our peace was on him and we are healed by his stripes.

Our day of liberation started with the worst day in history making it the greatest day for our soul. Liberation from sin and death. And on resurrection day, life and regeneration for our spirits.

Come, Lord Jesus.


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved

One Day To Feed The World

Good morning.

One Day.

One Day.

We pack a lot of meaning in those two words.

When we’re young we say, One Day I’ll graduate school … And that day comes.

Then we say, One Day I’ll get married….And that day comes.

One day, I’ll work a job…and that day comes.

One day, I’ll retire … and that day doesn’t come soon enough.

And sometimes we say, One Day Lord, I want to do something great for you.
That day has come.

April is the month we take the challenge to give One Day’s wage to provide food, water, education, clothes, blankets and so many other things to those in need.

The day has come.

One Day Challenge to Feed the World. Christ said in Matthew 25:40, “Verily I say unto you, in as much as you have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me.” That is powerful. That is Great.

But, how much is One Day?

If we work at minimum wage, $7.25 per hour, that equals $58.

Let’s say we work for $15 per hour. That equals $120.

Let’s say our salary is $50,000 per year. We divide that by 260 working days which equals $193.

And let’s just say our salary is $1 Million per year (One Day!). That equals $3,846 – a lot of dough.

This month, will you feed a hungry child, put clothes on a woman’s back, provide grain for a farmer to earn a living?

One Day. 8 hours of your work. It means so much to those in need …. And to the Lord.

Do you want to make a hungry person’s day special? Click Here and donate to feed the world.


Copyright © 2017, David A. Zimmer, All Rights Reserved.

A Tribute To Our Beloved Cat, Mindy

(Editor’s Note: This a tale of our cat, Mindy. Through her death, I was able to help my sons understand more about Heaven, Hell, the need for a Savior and Jesus Christ. It is a long post.)

Today is July 30, 2004, the day our beloved cat, Mindy, died. Actually, we had to put her to sleep. We had to make the hard decision yesterday after she refused to take her medicine and her health condition continued to worsen. Cindy was the one who made the tough decision. Where she got the strength and fortitude to do so, I don’t know. I know it was tough to do so. I don’t know if I would have had the strength to make that decision.

Today started out as a sunny day. Mindy was sleeping in one of her favorite corners, as usual, not suspecting that in just a few short hours, she would be put to sleep for the final time. David and Ian came down to watch TV as usual and, as it has become a custom, Mindy joined them to catch a pet or two. Since Mindy could not get onto the couch herself, David helped her and she settled next to him. I suppose that both Ian and David enjoyed this ritual and Mindy was the benefactor, getting petted by two boys that loved her very much.

We went hiking yesterday to Hawk Mountain Sanctuary. When we were finished, we sat in the car and ate some sandwiches. It was during that time that Cindy informed the boys that we were taking Mindy to the vet the next day. The boys didn’t seem to mind since recently, we had been taking Mindy to the vet regularly. We had tests done to determine her state of health. For the past year or more, she had been having regular bouts of vomiting. She lost a lot of weight, and even though eating more than usual, just couldn’t regain it. She looked so thin and small that many people thought that she was a young cat. She was really 14 years old, 126 in cat years.

Mindy was a funny cat. She had some peculiar habits. She had her favorite places to sleep, as all cats do. But she had this one strange habit: she loved to lick plastic. Her tastes in plastic broadened over time starting out with plastic shopping bags and expanding to plastic chairs or other types of plastic. Many nights I was awakened by the sound of her rough tongue licking a nearby bag. It was really strange to hear that sound. She would lick in the night, she would lick during the day. She eventually included pottery to her list of licking prospects.

We have lamps on our night tables made from a pottery. If the bags weren’t handy, the lamps would do nicely. Again, the rough tongue on the pottery made a strange and loud sound, loud enough to wake me up. She would keep it up for 5 minutes or more, an eternity when you are just waking. She also enjoyed our slate hearth on the fireplace. It now sports several tongue prints from her licking episodes.

Mindy also like to suckle on things. We would find her in the laundry basket, hidden under the dirty clothes, suckling on some dirty clothes. Or we would be watching a movie. She would nestle between Cindy and me. Quietly and imperceptibly, she would create a huge wet spot on your pant leg.

She enjoyed being with people. Sometimes, she would sit across the room, others she would sit next to you. You never knew her pattern. It would vary from time to time. If she did sit with us during movies, it was always between us. I guess she felt more secure that way or felt that she was with both of us at the same time.

Mindy loved the windowsill in the kitchen. It is a wide sill with several baskets on it and caught the afternoon sun. She had her favorite basket and curl up as tight as could be into one of them for an afternoon nap. It was funny to see a full sized cat, especially when she was heavier, walk around in circles to eventually squish herself into the basket and then eventually sleep.

If there were a box, she always had to climb into it for some exploration. One time, as we were packing the Christmas decorations, she climbed into one and almost became part of the boxes headed for the attic only to be pulled out the next season.

Mindy was a grey tabby with greenish-amber eyes. She would yammer for food, yammer for a pet, and just make sure that you knew she was there. She would watch me as I washed dishes just to make sure that she got fed. Sometimes she had a hopeful look in her eyes, other times, she would be giving me the “evil” eye because I had not fed her fast enough. She had many emotions and expressed them.

Born in March of 1990, Cindy had gotten Mindy about the same time that I had gotten Caesar. Caesar was born April 1990. Caesar died during our house fire April 26, 1996, along with his buddy, Brutus – a cat that I had gotten about a year later to keep Caesar company while I was on business trips – something that I did regularly for extended periods in 1991.

Caesar and Brutus were the best of buddies from the start. There was never any quarreling or fighting between them. The day that I picked Brutus up from the vet, Caesar and Mindy were there also, for some type of checkup. Caesar liked Brutus immediately; Mindy hissed at both of them. That basically describes the relationship between the three of them until the deaths of Caesar and Brutus. Brutus and Caesar, Caesar and Brutus – two peas in a pod. Mindy just didn’t like them. In fact, her personality changed quite a bit until after the fire. Then, she became sweet as pie to everyone who entered our house (she never did like squirrels or dogs though).

Anyway, the boys didn’t really understand that Cindy meant that we would be putting Mindy to sleep. So I explained that meant that Mindy would not be coming home again. David understood and immediately became sad. He couldn’t eat anymore and his stomach immediately began to hurt. His stomach has been bothering him for several weeks. I don’t know if it is related to Mindy’s impending death (we had mentioned this situation a few months back, but have been pushing it off for as long as possible – maybe that really effected David). Ian didn’t understand. He didn’t seem to react, which I thought was peculiar, but I just didn’t know.

David could not eat breakfast this morning because of stomach yuckiness. I think he was really worried and upset knowing what was going to happen to Mindy. Ian just acted normal. We all were going to go to the vet with Mindy, but David was just too sick. It was probably a good thing – I was not handling the situation too well myself. I had a similar reaction to Mindy that I had with my father many years before when he was passing away.

I had a desire to scoop them up and run away because I didn’t want them to die, but at the same time, I couldn’t do it because I knew I couldn’t save them. I had to stay away.

Ian was playing on the computer when I told him it was time to take Mindy to the vet. His reaction was one of “ok, we’ll take Mindy and then we will be back.” I didn’t know if it was because a 6-year-old didn’t have a concept of death, or that he didn’t grasp that Mindy just wouldn’t be around anymore, or if he just didn’t realize what was to happen.

Since it was time, I decided that it would be good for me to get Mindy to put her in the box for her final ride to the vet. It would give me a chance to say goodbye to alias “Fat Butt”, although she wasn’t fat anymore more, or “Puke Face” since she was always vomiting. No, I couldn’t call her those names this time. I could only call her Mindy, “little girl”, and “buddy.” I could only hold her in my arms and think how much I would miss her. “Did she know what was going to happen?” “Was she happy?” “Was she afraid?” “Is this what she would want since she was basically starving herself anyway?”

We had Mindy on steroids and two antibiotics. She had stopped eating about three days ago and the little that she did eat once I put dry food down only came up and more. Since she had nothing in her system, and the antibiotics messed up her bowels, she had really bad diarrhea. The problem is that she didn’t use her litter box. She was losing her ability to either control herself or understand where the box was. Over the past month or so, she used other spots as a litter box such as laundry, shredded paper, and eventually, some throw rugs near her litter box. The signs were there. The signs of deterioration and death – the final end.

While I held Mindy in my arms, I felt that it would be good to let David say goodbye to her. He was very tearful and sad. He was really upset that he didn’t know where her body would go. I was so upset, I was crying like a baby and whisked Mindy away, but decided that I should bring her back to David for a more proper goodbye.

Cindy asked me what was happening and I couldn’t make intelligent sounds because of my crying. Finally, we put Mindy into the box and Cindy and Ian left.
David and I talked while they were gone. We talked about Mindy and how bad we felt. He asked what would happen to her body. I told him that I asked Cindy to bring her back home so that we could bury her in the backyard and have a little ceremony for her. That made him feel much better. As we talked, his face brightened and the color returned. We talked about my Dad and my reaction to his death.

Strange, the reactions were so different, but in some ways, similar.
I told David that I had gone out to my parent’s house the last week to help my mother before he passed away, the same house that I had grown up in as a child. I told him how I had not seen him for a while and now he appeared very thin and pale. My father was always slightly above average weight with a roundish face. His face and neck were always a reddish color from looking into the furnaces at the steel mill for which he worked many years. After his retirement, he lost weight, but his face was always roundish with big blue eyes; the reddishness dissipated. There always seemed to be a gleam of adventure or a desire to learn in his eyes. Although he would get frustrated often, he always enjoyed a good challenge because he knew he could overcome it and learn something new.

But when I saw him the day I arrived the week of his death, the roundish face was gone, the color was gone, in fact, it was almost ashen – the color of death. The gleam in his eyes was gone. Although he motioned to shake my hand, he could not speak. I was so afraid, so scared, because I didn’t know what life was going to be like without my father, I was frozen in time. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t shake his hand. I was so ashamed. I wanted to shake his hand so desperately, but I couldn’t move. Finally, he gave up. We never spoke after that, although he was able to speak with one other friend who happened to be at the hospital the day that we took him there. I was too ashamed to attempt a conversation. What does one say to the person you most revered that you are going to lose shortly?

My father was in the hospital for about 2 or 3 days, mostly in a morphine coma. He had set his chin to die. He and my mother had decided during the Christmas season of 1992 that he had had enough of fighting cancer that was ravaging his body. The chemotherapy and radiation weren’t going to work and there was no sense in continuing just to pad the pockets of doctors and hospitals. He would rather leave it for my mother to live on. He informed me while I visited him in the hospital at Christmas time that he was going to stop the treatments. I asked what that meant. He quietly but confidently said, “that means that I will die.” We sat silently for a while. It was very hard. By February, he was now in the hospital for the last time.

It was February 10, 1993. He lay in a coma. His hand lay near his body, curled into a semi-fist. It still looked big to me – strong, capable, and full of knowledge. My father was an engineer, not a laborer, one that worked with his mind. Yet, his hands still represented strength to me. Granted, his hands were probably no bigger than mine since we are approximately the same height, weight, and build. But, for some reason, his hand seemed so large to me.
As I sat there in the quiet, I slid my hand toward his and place my finger into his hand so that it felt like he was holding my finger.

“Dad, I love you, I am glad that you were my father, and I will miss you dearly. I am glad that you believe in Jesus Christ and are saved so that I will get to see you again,” I whispered. I couldn’t say it out loud because it was something that I felt so deeply that it simply would not come out.

He died later that night – February 11, 1993 – just past midnight sometime, just so that it would not be on my mother’s birthday – Feb. 10. Oh, he loved my mother dearly. Even to the very end, he loved her so. His 71st birthday would have been Feb. 15. He was an amazing man; I still miss him dearly.

Funny though, when I awoke that morning, I knew that he was gone. I had heard the phone ring around 2:30 am and I figured that it was a call from the hospital. My mother confirmed what I suspected. I was sad. I was quiet. I was thoughtful, but I wasn’t a blithering idiot like I am today over Mindy’s death. Why am I so upset about Mindy’s death? I don’t know.

I cried over Caesar’s death, especially as I buried him out in the backyard. I was upset that he was gone; I was upset with the way he died – he didn’t deserve that;  I was upset that I never found his buddy, Brutus. But I didn’t carry on like I have with Mindy.

As David and my conversation continued, we talked more about Mindy. He asked where animals go when they died. I knew that he would ask that question. I had thought about it prior so that I would have a good answer. Should I just give the pat answer that says all cats go to heaven? But that wouldn’t be truthful because I don’t know the right answer. So I decided that I would tell him that I didn’t know. It would give me an opportunity to talk about how we as humans are a spirit, we have a soul, and we live in a body. I don’t know if animals have spirits.

David explained about the Egyptian’s beliefs and how they believed that their two parts that were separated by death would come back together again because of the burial process. It was a great opportunity for me to show how unbelievers could come to that conclusion of only two parts while the truth is that God made us tri-part beings. I also explained that I don’t whether animals are tri-part beings or not.

I explained that if the animal doesn’t have a spirit, then they simply cease to exist. But, God talks about animals in heaven, so did He create some animals for earth and some for heaven, or did He create animals for earth and when they die, they go to Heaven? I think it would be neat that He created them for earth and took their souls to Heaven when they died. That way, we can see our beloved animals there.

From that, we talked about how God sent His Son, Jesus, to redeem us so that we could go be with the Father forever. We talked about what the eternal fire of judgment would be for those who don’t believe. We talked about the darkness that is so great, that even the light from the fire would not be seen. We talked about the intense heat that would constantly torture those that are there. We talked about the abject loneliness each inhabitant would feel that would last forever.

But we also got a little philosophical. I asked David, “Let’s say someone becomes a believer in Christ with the promise of heaven. Let’s say that after they died, they found out that the teaching in the Bible was false and there is no eternal life? What would they lose?”

We discussed how believers have better lives here because of the Bible teaching than those who do not. So, therefore, what do they lose if the Bible turns out to be wrong? Nothing.

On the other hand, let’s say someone decides that the Bible is not true and rejects its message? And, then let’s say that the Bible is true and that eternal life and damnation is true? What have they lost by not believing? Eternity with Christ. They have lost that. They have gained eternal damnation. The point of the discussion was to cement his salvation in Christ so that he would see that Christianity, the Bible, and believing in Christ are extremely important. I asked if he wants to see Mindy again. David said yes. Then, if God does take animals to heaven, the only way to see her again was to be in heaven with her.

Around that time, Cindy and Ian arrived home with Mindy. I went out to greet them. I asked how Cindy was and if she was able to bring Mindy home. She said yes.

It was about that time that I saw Ian. He was pale, very sad, and holding a pamphlet. I asked Cindy how he was and she said he was a mess. He was really upset. I asked Ian if he had understood what was going to happen before going to the vet. He did not.

I was crushed. I didn’t want him to learn of the situation that way. I hugged him and cried. He hugged me back and cried. I told him that I was really sorry that he learned about it that way. He was crushed. He was really upset. Ian is very sensitive to others and their feelings.

He asked what do we do now. I said that Mommy and I had decided to bury Mindy in the backyard and have a little ceremony. He liked that very much. He was holding tight to the pamphlet in his hand.

Cindy took Mindy around back and I got the shovel and pick. I dug a hole about two feet deep. I couldn’t go much further because of the extensive rocks in our yard. Every time I looked in the box and saw Mindy in there, I started crying again. So I decided not to look anymore. That helped, but I still thought about her while I dug.

It was really humid. I couldn’t tell which were stinging my eyes more: sweat or tears. I was just an outright mess. I hope that my children weren’t hoping for a stalwart rock-of-Gibraltar. They didn’t get that from me today. David cried. Ian cried. I believe that Cindy cried several times also.

Finally, it was time to lay Mindy to rest. I took her out of the box. Her fur was so soft. She looked just like she did when she was alive. She was warm and soft, but I knew that she was no more. I gently laid her down in the grave. I made sure she looked comfortable.

We all petted her for the last time. We all cried again. I slowly and lovingly placed the dirt over her. I so much wanted to take the dirt off and say “Live”, but I knew that would not help. All I could say was no more pain, no more suffering. As the dirt continued to cover her, I felt more upset. Finally, you could see her no more. Her life was over. Complete.

I continued to push the dirt over her. David really cried. Ian was upset. Finally, Ian tried to place the pamphlet that he held onto so tightly into the dirt as a marker. Somehow, he, in his grief, had enough thought to think of a way to locate the grave after all was said and done. Ian is such a caring child – so thoughtful. He reads the pains and hurts of others. He goes out of his way to help those who might be hurting or those who need help.

The other day, David was playing behind one of our neighbor’s home. He had his bike and it was time for dinner. I did not see his bike, so I assumed that he was riding around a loop in our neighborhood. I walked to call him for dinner, but I didn’t see him. I asked several of his friends who also were riding their bikes but they had not seen him for quite some time. I got in the car and scoured the neighborhood. Still no David.

I came back and picked up Cindy and Ian so that we could do another search and broaden the scope. We were beginning to get worried. Finally, Cindy, Ian and I prayed for David’s safe return and protection, continued our search and then came back home. Fortunately, David was there!

That night, at the dinner table, it was Ian’s turn to bless the food. He thanked God for the food and other things, but most importantly, he thanked God for protecting David, keeping him safe, and helping us find him. It was really moving.

When he placed the pamphlet on Mindy’s grave, it was really touching.
We prayed over Mindy thanking Jesus for letting her be a part of our lives and asked Him to always keep her in our remembrance. I believe that the ceremony will be a part of my children’s memories forever, but most importantly, what I want them to remember is that our beliefs and Jesus Christ are a part of us. Not something that we learn from a book or recite on Sundays only, but something that we live each day. I believe that our children understand that we live the Bible, not just know about it.

After the ceremony, we went into the house to clean up from the dirt. While in the bathroom, Ian asked if we would see Mindy again. I told him I don’t know where animals go when they die, but if they go to heaven, the only way we would be able to see her was if we were in heaven. I asked, “You have received Christ as your personal Savior, right?” He said yes. I told him, “Ian, the most important thing to me is that you, David, and Mommy be in heaven with me. Otherwise, it will not be heaven. If Mindy is there, we will get to see her again. But you have to be there. Promise me that you will always believe in Jesus and follow what the Bible says.” Huge tears were streaming down my face. It is so great when God gives us opportunities to witness and confirm the faith of our family. My children are precious to me, but they are more precious to Jesus. I am glad that He has both in the palm of His hand.

The day continued on. But, we all had a quiet, sad spirit. Since we had made an appointment with a doctor for David because of the stomachaches, we went there and then went to McDonald’s. No one was interested in eating before, but now we had some hunger. But the mode of the boys was very somber. We were all thinking about Mindy. We talked a little bit about her. We were all sad that she was gone.

When we got home, we all expected something, but the house was just not the same. Mindy was gone. We watched a movie, went to karate, and came back to finish the movie. Again, the mood was very somber, although Ian seemed to be recovering faster than David or me.

After his shower and before getting into bed, Ian looked out the window to see if he could see Mindy’s grave. It was too dark, but he was glad to know that she was still with us.

I write this tribute because I am still upset. I miss that cat. I feel the feelings of my sons. I am sorry that they had to go through this, but I can’t protect them from pain. This is life. We yell. We scream. We laugh. We have fun. We get in trouble. We are family.

Now one of our family members is no more. She has left us and we pray that she is in a place that God has designed for her. In David’s prayers tonight, he prayed that Mindy was in a place far better than here and that she was having fun. I pray that animals just don’t cease to exist.

This is life. For me, it is the fact that my children believe. They know that there is a heaven and a hell. Both have accepted Christ as their personal savior. They believe. This is not fables or fairytales. It is truth and it is life. My children understand that. If that is all that I accomplish in my life is to bring my family to heaven with me, then I am the most blessed of all men. I praise God that my children believe and know that there is a God. I praise Him that they know that the God they serve is the God of Heaven and Earth. That He is the Father of all, that He is the Lord Jesus Christ, and that He is the Holy Spirit – three in one. I praise God that they understand and have a personal relationship with the God of the Universe through His Son, Jesus Christ. I praise Him that each of my family members has professed Him as Lord and Savior, King of Kings, and they know they are heaven bound. I praise God that they walk around singing praise hymns to Him instead of other music. I am above all, most blessed.

Thank you, Father, for giving me the opportunity through this sad event, to cement into my children’s minds their need and dependence on You. I thank you that You will quicken the words spoken today to their spirits so that their souls will be saved and be with You forever.


David A. Zimmer
July 30, 2004


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