To those cat lovers of the world, please do not get offended. These are purely my opinions and thoughts. There is a point to all of this.
I do not like cats. Kittens are great, so cute, fluffy and playful. Harmless even. But kittens grow up to be cats. I used to think I loved cats. In fact, I wanted one. I then went to work for the Army Veterinary Corp while we lived in Japan. I was hired as a receptionist, and became a scrub nurse to the vets. I loved that job, except for the cats. I was bitten at least six or seven times a day by cats. After doing that for eighteen months, you can understand my dislike of cats. It’s just not fun to be bitten by them daily, plus, they make my eyes water and I sneeze.
A year ago we were quasi adopted by a cat. Living in the ‘country’ it’s great to have one to kill off the mice and the snakes. Dale had wanted an outdoor cat, so he was thrilled. Me? Not so much.
But we fed him and made certain there was an outdoor feeding station for when we were not home. We have a creek running through our property, so water is readily available.
He has never officially been named. After all, he has only quasi adopted us. A friend of mine named him Thaddeus after the role on The Chosen played by Giavani Cairo . On the show he is sometimes referred to by the cast and crew as Rad Thad (so I have read). I consider this cat to be Mad Thad. He also was named Sassy by our granddaughter this summer. Of course the cat nipped at our sweet granddaughter, did not break the skin, but caused a slight bruise. That in itself was enough for me to send the cat into the next country. But, not our granddaughter. A couple hours after being nipped, she drew him pictures and made a present to the cat. We overheard her tell the cat that she understood why she was nipped at, his paw got stuck in her dress and although she was trying to help him, the cat, in panic, nipped at her. Of course, that melted my heart.
We recently came back from visiting our granddaughter and there was no cat to be found. Dale was upset, me, I thought well, at least I don’t have to buy cat food. I am just being honest here, folks.
The cat was gone for a couple of weeks. Yes, I actually did pray for it. Last week as we were heading into town we were at a stop sign and I glanced across a busy road and mentioned to Dale that it looked like the cat. He rolled the window down and gave his usual call. The cat looked up and responded. I thought, he has found a home.
A little sadness crept in. Yes, I am not that hard hearted. For the next few days I looked in every ditch and in every yard to see if I saw him again. Yes, I did pray for his safety.
After a few days, there on our doorstep was the cat. We gave him food and water and I went and bought more food. The storm from hurricane Ian was approaching and supposed to hit us hard. We broke down, went to Target and bought a new cat bed, and a litter box for him. The day of the storm we got him on our screen porch so he could be out of harms way. He ignored the bed and curled up on our porch chairs and slept through the night. The next day was a beautiful day and once we figured out that it was okay to be out, we let the cat out.
The cat walked out of the screen porch and disappeared, not to be seen. We looked at each other and decided the cat was not be owned, or indebted to us.
Tonight, the cat reappeared, hungry. We fed him and he is now sleeping on our front porch like he owns the place.
As I thought about this, it occurred to me that we often treat God in a quasi fashion. He died on the cross for our sins. He suffered. He redeemed us. He feeds us through our pastors. He provides safety in storms. He gives us shelter. He gives us love and care when we let Him.
We are no different than Stupid Cat. He yearns for our love, our affection and meanwhile we lick our paws, sidle up to Him and then nip at Him when He tries to help us. The difference is, that although I could give up on the cat, the Lord will never give up on me.
“But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. 2 When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. 3 For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I gave Egypt as a ransom for your freedom; I gave Ethiopia and Seba in your place. 4 Others were given in exchange for you. I traded their lives for yours because you are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you.” Isaiah 43:1-4 (NLT)