Cat Watching

Cats live a simple life. They eat, sleep, and hunt. When we got our cat, we promised to never let roam outside, and we haven’t. So, when our cat decides to hunt, it finds a perch next to a window, and pretends it might pounce.

It’s better that way. Ours is a tough neighborhood.

No, really, it is.

While our cat enjoyed watching the birds taking residence in the parsonage birdhouse, several groundhogs, a fox, and a “stray” cat visited our porch. Watching our cat respond to these visits made me thank God for double pane glass, brought to mind the poet who said: “good fences make for good neighbors,” the notion that had there been glass windows back in the day, curiosity would have never killed the proverbial cat, and an affirmation of the wisdom that kept our cat stays indoors. I’d hate to think what would happen if it had met up with whatever critter took the wood off the parsonage garage doors, but now that I do think about it, probably not much. Our cat is pretty much a scaredy-cat.

Still, she yearns.

Every now and then, our cat will yearn to know more about the world she sees, but can never visit. I can tell. And, when I can’t, she lets me know. If the weather’s right, I open a window by one of her perches. It’s better than catnip. She wanders into the window, puts her nose close to the screen, breathes in the air, takes in sounds, and the settles down to in the warmth of the sun, the cool of the breeze, and purrs; content. Life is good.

Being with God is like that.

Every now and then, I’ll catch myself all caught up in the rush many things to be done, or swept up in the dramas that travel through my life, and sometimes I’ll hear myself wishing for a half decent fence, or notice my head banging my on the proverbial glass; and think to open a window to pray, to read, to worship, to rest in the larger life of God, and find in the still what the Bible calls “the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want,” which allows us to do all we have to do, and live through all life hands us, in him who gives us strength. (Philippians 4:12-13)