Remember the cat I wasn’t going to get attached to? Let me tell you a little story about her…
I finally found time in our hectic schedule to bring her to the vet for an initial check up. This was about two weeks ago. Her check up went great. She received two vaccines and some ear drops for the dead mites in her ears-GROSS!
Two days after her vet visit she was not herself. She was lethargic and would not get up off the couch. She was swollen and her little face was so puffy that she could barely open her eyes. She didn’t want to be pet.
I went into an internal panic. I felt bad for the cat, but the real panic was for my kiddos. They have lost three pets in the last four years (stories for another time) and I knew they could not handle losing Cat right now.
We went back to the vet. Cat had a fever and some kind of infection. I personally think she got a bad vaccine but what do I know? They kept her for the day and treated her with fluids and sent us home with an oral antibiotic and new ear drops.
Have you ever tried giving oral antibiotics to a cat? Think back to when you have had to give your kids the pink liquid penicillin. Remember how they cried, fussed, shook their heads, and let the medicine run down their chin? Now picture your kids with sharp claws, lightening speed ninja moves, and a strong clenched jaw hiding very sharp teeth.
Twice a day I engaged in this battle. First the penicillin and then the ear drops. By day two the cat did not come to me for attention. By day four the cat would run and hide whenever I walked into the room.
I hate to admit this, but it really started to bother me. I couldn’t stand the thought of Cat not trusting me and fearing me. She wouldn’t even come to me for food. I hated that she no longer followed me around the house at night when it was bed time, meowing at me until I got into bed so she could jump up and get snuggled in. I hated that I could not explain to her that I was trying to help her, not hurt her. So much for me not getting involved with the cat…
This morning at 6:26am Cat came into my room meowing. For the first time in almost two weeks she jumped on my bed and snuggled in wanting me to pet her and then feed her. We were back to our old routine. Even though I was planning on sleeping in today (in preparation for the youth conference I am heading to) I was so happy to have her back!
In my barely awake state I thought “The prodigal cat”, and smiled.
Ridiculous I know. Trust me-I am not over spiritualizing my sick cat. Sometimes God speaks to our hearts through simple things.
The joy I felt at 6:26am when Cat deciding to trust me again (even if it was for selfish reasons like affection and food), is NOTHING compared to what the Lord feels when we trust in Him and return to Him.
I am not even talking about the major “prodigal moments” in our lives; the ones where we completely run away from God and immerse ourselves in the world. I am talking about the little prodigal moments we have throughout our faith walk.
I am just coming out of a prodigal moment. I never stopped believing that God is good. But once again I have been tormented by doubt, frustration, and unbelief when it comes to the plans God has for me. I have praised God from a safe distance over the last few weeks, not fully trusting Him. I have even avoided him a time or two.
We are a lot like Cat at times. God is holding us close trying to do a work in us, for our own benefit. However, we don’t understand it at the time. All we know is that we don’t like it. We try to ninja move our way out of it. We pray with clenched teeth, and try to claw our way to a more comfortable place. We begin to doubt and even mistrust what God is doing in our lives. We eventually start avoiding Him.
If you find yourself in a prodigal moment today, take some time to be still and let the Lord comfort you and speak to your heart. He may reveal the work He is trying to do in you. He may remain silent and simply comfort you in a way that reminds you that even when you don’t understand, He does. He knows the plans He has for you, and they are good!
Dear Heavenly Father, I confess I have been running from you. I have been filled with doubt and unbelief regarding the plans you have for me. Thank you for loving me and pursuing me in the midst of my unbelief. Thank you for the gift of faith. Thank you for rejoicing in my return. Thank you for rejoicing every time I return! In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Love, Grace, and a Prodigal Return,