A short while ago I was working on my church bulletin when I heard a distress call like one I've never heard before or since. My ears took a few minutes to adjust to the sound before I ran outside. There, hidden beneath a tall tree in my backyard, was a very soaked, very cold, and very frightened kitten. She couldn't have been more than seven or eight weeks old and she looked as close to death as I've ever seen a cat. When I reached out my hand her ears went flat, teeth bared and a low guttural moan emerged. I was going to have to get creative in my attempts to save this animal.
I ran inside and grabbed the tail end of a loaf of bread. Maybe I could lure her with food. No such luck. She was freezing, sopping wet, and terrified and nothing I could do would make her feel any better. My husband noticed me crouching down in the pouring rain and asked me what in the sam hill was I doing. When he peered over my shoulder, I could tell that for once, my love for cats didn't cause an immediate eye roll. He sent me to fetch a towel while he tried to lure the fur ball with kind words. It seems this particular cat was impartial to humans. It didn't seem to like him either.
I brought him the towel and in one smooth move, he draped it over our victim and brought her inside.
"You're going to have call the SPCA. You know we can't keep her."
I ignored him and continued to dry off my new baby. I grabbed an eye dropper and filled it with milk. My new friend didn't seem to be hungry. At least she wasn't threatening to bite my hand off anymore.
"You really need to take her to the pound. We can't keep her."
I looked at him with the biggest puppy dog eyes I could muster.
"We have to keep her. I rescued her. She's mine now."
"We can't afford her. The shots alone are more than we have in the bank right now. Do you want me to come with you?"
I reluctantly let him drive us over there while I continued to dry off my small bundle. I noticed her ears had perked up and were no longer flat against her head. She had also stopped shivering. A couple of times I even had to wrap her back up in the towel to keep her from exploring the new company car.
We drove to the SPCA and deposited Oliver. (I decided to call the fuzz head Oliver because it reminded me of the tiny cat from the movie, Oliver and Company.)
On the way home, I didn't have much to say. I kept thinking about the irony of it all. I had just had my lady parts removed and have been grieving over my loss of ability to bear children. Then I found a cat half soaked to death that I was not allowed to keep. My heart was just as limp as the burden in my lap.
Then I thought of how much that kitten reminded me of myself not too long ago. I was alone, lost, half dead, and shivering with fear. Anyone that tried to get close to me was immediately warned to back off or feel my wrath. But when my rescuer found me, He didn't deposit me on a stranger's doorstep. He took me in, dried me off, and loved the dirt away from my shaking body. He promised me a new life and a freedom from the cold, outside world. He gave me a home and took care of me in my darkest hour. Like the kitten, I would have died from the outside elements if He hadn't found me.
Every day I'm reminded of His great love. When I was abandoned and left alone to die, He found me. He spared no expense when I was welcomed into His family. Money might have prevented me from keeping the lost kitten but no amount of earthly wealth can keep me out of God's house. I belong to Him. This is my comfort, my peace, and my hope.
How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!
1 John 3:1