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  • Writer's pictureJulie Gross

I Love Jesus, but I am Sad Right Now

His name was Leo. He was a big orange cat, and he was almost 14 years old. The people where we adopted him in Gillette, WY, said he was born in 2009, and we adopted him in 2010, so Leo was part of our family for almost 13 years. We put Leo to sleep on March 11, 2023, and that makes me very sad.

I want to paint a picture for you, so you can get to know Leo at least a little bit. If you’re a person who doesn’t like cats, you still might have liked Leo as he acted more like a dog. He drank out of the toilet, he begged at the dinner table and in the kitchen for people food, he carried a bouncy ball around in his mouth, and he was always happy to see me! He was also the best cuddler; he would lay in my arms and reach up with his paw to touch my cheek.

He was a bright orange ginger cat, and up until the last few years of his life, he weighed right around 14 pounds. Leo was larger than life! He could stand on his hind feet, put his front paws on the dining room table, and peek his head over the top of the table to see what we were eating. He would easily jump from the floor to the refrigerator with only a pause at the counter. Leo also loved to jump from the floor into my arms–he could have been in a circus!

Leo was also very vocal, and he became even more so after he had hyperthyroidism. In the morning, he let me know very clearly that he was hungry. When he was younger, he’d come into my bedroom around 4 or 5 a.m., sit on my chest, meow in my face, and pat my cheek with his paw to let me know he wanted breakfast. He would hear me pull my van into the garage, and he would always meet me at the door to welcome me home with a meow or two!

I know Leo was a cat and not a human, but I miss him greatly, and I am grieving his loss. I know that the Lord cares about that because He cares about me. Psalm 147:3-5 says this: “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.” I believe the Lord will heal my broken heart, and He calls each star by name, so I am guessing He did the same with Leo. My Lord is “great” and “mighty,” and He has great understanding, so I know he can understand my hurt and my loss.

What an amazing God we have! He loves us, cares for us, takes care of us, and He sent His son to die on the cross for us. Thank you, Lord!

Here's one more Leo story. I said before that he would beg for people food, and not just chicken or tuna. Leo was the only cat I knew who would eat just about anything: green beans, popcorn, honey roasted peanuts, ham, crackers, yogurt, cereal, ice cream . . . You understand what I'm saying, right? But, his favorite thing to eat was nacho cheese flavored Doritos! We'd open that bag, and no matter where he was in the house, he'd come running! We have a joke in the family that maybe he was born with white fur, and he took on the color orange because he ate so many Doritos, just like flamingos turn pink because they eat so many shrimp! I think that story would make God smile!

Here are some pictures of my Leo!

Thank you for reading, friends!



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