There was a time in my life in which I did not believe in God. People have always said that God will do what was best for you, and then he did something the complete opposite for me.
In the summer of 2004, I met Bella. Bella was a beautiful all black German Shepherd. Bella and I grew very close over the next two years, and she was like a best friend to me. Then she was diagnosed with heart disease, and a short while later, God took her away from me. In the few months following, I was left to deal with my thoughts. I had time to look back and resent some of the days in which I had acted harshly towards her, and became very guilty inside, even though I knew that our good times greatly outweighed the bad. I felt sorrow, sadness, but mostly I felt anger towards God. Why would he, this being who was supposed to be so great and kind, do this? Why would he take the one soul in this life that I really connected with away from me? The more I questioned this, the less I actually believed in God. I became afraid to love again, for the fear of the pain that resulted when losing them was so great, and my other relationships suffered because of this. The people around me noticed that I was more distant with them than ever before. I was no longer angry, for remaining angry is very tiresome. I simply tried to just stop loving and caring for anyone. Then, against my better judgement, my parents got another puppy named Casey. I barely interacted with her, because I did not want to love (and lose) again. Also, in the back of my mind, I thought that by loving Casey I would be replacing Bella, which was something I did not want to do.
Then one night I was lying in bed trying to fall asleep. Suddenly, I felt a presence beside me. Then I heard a voice come to me. I heard Bella tell me that I should not feel any guilt or sorrow, and that she was in a better place where she was free from pain. Then she told me to please love Casey, because it was not fair for either of us if I didn’t. You probably will not believe me if you haven’t suffered a great loss, but for those of you who have probably have had something similar happen.
Since that night, I have been able to move past the threat of pain and am able to love again. There is a saying someone once told me: “Life is for the living.” I am now able to fully appreciate the impact of these words. When you lose somebody you care about, your world caves in and you become very upset, but you need to understand that the one you lost would not want you to be suffering on their account. They would want you to be happy and continue living life to its fullest. Think about the good ways that they influenced and affected your life, and how you benefited from knowing them. Try your best to continue with life. To move on with your life is not forgetting them by any means. In fact, you are respecting their memory by not wallowing in grief.
Once I came to understand all of this, I began to believe in and respect God once more. He has a plan, and although it may not be apparent at times what it is, remember that he knows what he is doing. I hope you remember that to live without loving isn’t really living at all, but is simply existing in a lonely world. It is better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all. This is what I believe.
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