Life lesson from a mother cat
God speaks us in a variety of ways. Usually, I hear his voice in the words of music. Occasionally in the words of a friend. Sometimes in the television I’m watching.
This was one of those days.
When I’m feeling anxious or stressed, I can’t handle the normal shows on TV. Even in sitcoms, there is drama. Characters are making fun of each other. People are in embarrassing situation. Sometimes even the lightest program is stressful.
When nothing else will do, I will watch something from Animal Planet. Cute, fuzzy animals being all cute and fuzzy makes me smile. It’s sweet and innocent. The narrator pretends there is a story. “Look! Puddles has found an ally in his quest to go outside!”
There were a bunch of kittens clustered on a piece of furniture. One by one, they climbed down with razor claws. When the last kitten realized he was alone, he tried to follow. The narrator informed the audience that this was a piece of high drama.
“What will happen?!”
The kitten dangled at the bottom of the fabric. His poor feet didn’t yet touch the floor. He didn’t know how high the drop was. He cried out.
The mother cat heard him cry and came over to investigate. She wanted to make sure it wasn’t a real emergency.
She observed the kitten and his plight for a moment.
Then she walked away.
I could almost hear the desperation in the cries of the kitten. “Don’t you love me? Why don’t you save me? It would be so easy for you to pick me up!”
The mother cat stayed a few feet away, but didn’t do anything to help the poor kitten. She blinked once and laid down.
That’s when I heard God.
That kitten is you.
“Why won’t you pick me up, God? It would be so easy for you to change my life and save me!”
Does the kitten need to be rescued? He certainly thinks so. He is hovering an inch from the floor. He is crying out for assistance. In his mind, it is a bottomless drop beneath his paws.
The mother waits patiently.
Thank you, God, for continuing to be patient with me. I do not know how far my drop will be. I don’t even know if there will be a drop. It could be so small that I won’t even notice.
What are we afraid of?
If the drop had been large, the mother cat would have stepped in.
If I were in real danger, God would have saved me.
Have you ever been in a situation you should not have survived?
That was God.
He’s always a few feet away from you, watching for real danger. He is a good father. He knows how to make you work for it without letting you become too frustrated. He knows that razor edge of our personality—he put it there.
Some of need a challenge to overcome. Some of us need an even bigger challenge to overcome. God knows which is which.
I was watching a movie recently where a coach told a defeated team to “play like you have a chip on your shoulder.” Play life like you have something to prove to God. You have something to prove to yourself.
Grit your teeth. It’s hard. It’s supposed to be.
“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win.”John F. Kennedy
I intend to win.
How do you get stronger?
If you want to get more muscular, you lift heavy weights. That is hard work.
If you want to lose weight, you eat less food. That is hard work.
If you want to gain patience, be around things that make you impatient. That is hard work.
If you want to improve anything in your life, it will take hard work. God knows that. Maybe your current difficulties are to make you stronger.
My wife lives in another country. Our time apart is difficult. We have to fight and struggle to make this work and be together. Neither of us is giving up. This situation is forming an unbreakable bond between us. When we are finally together, we will be together for life.
Praise God for your current difficulties. Smile as you consider how strong you will be afterwards.
Play with a chip on your shoulder.