Recently, I thought one of my cats had become another missing feline. I was most concerned, in the last year and a half I have lost several cats. Sally, and Bubba, and Piper, and then there was Sweetie who died from a snake bite. We have coyotes out here, and it seems they snack on cats.
When Liz did not greet me at the door,which she did every morning, since she had been moved out of the house, and Max and Richard were there I thought something could be amiss. I began calling for her, I called for her all day, climbed the fence to search the neighboring area; drove the uninhabited 30 acres, east of us ,searching for tufts of fur, and found many trails among the mesquite made by coyotes. My voice began cracking, with emotion, by evening, I KNEW she was gone. The next day I did the same,and prayed more fervently to God.
Yes, I prayed to God to find my cat. I have prayed all my life for little things, like my cats. I (we) can do that, you know. My cats, Max, Lilly, Taffy & Bubba, survived living at a ranch house we leased for 5 years because God answered my prayers for protection for my cats. I know this.A couple of days after we moved from the ranch ,our neighbors called to report on life at the ranch without us, they explained they would drive in and find four to five coyotes in our front yard. They complimented our old dog Ranger for being coyote repellant. I knew, know, Ranger was the instrument God used.
My prayers this time were for Liz returning. Then they became more than this. I began to pray and be led into ‘conversation’ with God on his power and grace. I recalled God’s miracles, and controlling of animals. Lions with Daniel. Big fish eats and urps Jonah. Donkey talks. God’s miracles of healing and over’powering’ death, the lame walked, the blind given sight, leprosy healed. Boy with aneurism or something like this, brought back to life. Lazarus. I reminded God, He reminded me, I proclaimed my unwavering belief that He did these great things, I knew he could do anything. God could bring my dead cat back, he could have the coyote urp her up, he could revive her body, he could remake her and replace her. He did have nine lives to work with!
It was in this prayer this conversation that I came to see something else I had lost, other than Liz. I had an inkling of doubt in me.
James 1:6–7 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;
I then did some soul searching of my own. I found I had lost knowing God WOULD do all things. I found I I began my prayer with “If you CAN…” Well, of course he ‘COULD’. So I revised, I said prayed “ If you WILL…” . Then I thought, “Why doesn’t he?” Then as I prayed I saw another obstacle, beyond my doubt.
Psalm 66:18 18 If I had cherished iniquity in my heart,the Lord would not have listened.
My own unrepentance. God holds back blessing me, if I do not ‘bless‘ him, so to speak, with my all, my sins. God knows everything about me, my thoughts my actions, my heart, he wants me to admit to ME and my failures, to be honest with HIM. My just knowing I have faults and wrong choices is not enough either. I must take the humbling step to God and show him what he already knows what I am holding behind my back.
I love these AHA moments I get from God. I confessed the sins I did not know I had, asking him to reveal. I asked forgiveness for the sins of anger, resentment, haughtiness, condemnation, fear, unforgiveness I had towards those who had hurt me and so deserved these feeling of MINE. Though the only one who felt the pain from these unrepented feelings were me. I ‘felt’ God hearing me.
1 John 5:14–15 14 And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.
I thanked him, I still do, for showing me this. The connection was made.I went on with my day. Shared my thoughts with Keith. Meditated all day on my epiphany. Accepted that Liz may not return, but thankful God used this moment to grow me yet some more.
Later in the afternoon Keith and I were outside talking, yard stuff, chore stuff, burning up in the heat. I think I had just ‘spoke’ to Max, the cat, who was laying on the porch, and commented to Keith how I hated that Liz was yet another coyote casuality. Turned back to the porch and, Liz is walking across. At first it actually did not ‘compute’ that Liz was back, on the porch walking with the others cats. Then it did! “LIZ”– Keith of course, did his typical “ I told you so, you were getting all worked up about nothing, they always come back” speech. (If they ALWAYS come back, pray tell, where are Bubba, Sally and Piper?)
I scooped up Liz and took her into the house, examining for injuries. No injuries, but she was coated with tree sap and had a pine needle stuck in her belly fur. The nearest with pine trees is a couple of lots over. A single older guy, with various pines and cedars around his house for wind block, and chickens and two blue heeler’s.
Liz was very odd for a couple of days after this, seemed to be recouping, she lay on the cold cement floor belly down most of the time, mewing a bit if we walked by. She avoided the doors going outside, and ran the other direction when we opened one. Drank lots of water. So best guess, Liz was up in a tree for a couple of days, in 110+ degree heat,. Till God brought her down!!! Or even wilder and crazier, absolutely anything inconceivable could have happened to her, all I know is God brought her back. God also took this opportunity to remind me, if I am: up a tree, in the depths, without a rope, without a paddle, without a dime to my name…. He can get me, save me, bring me home, no problem. He never quits me, never stops listening, it is I who puts things in the way. Me who hampers prayers. Myself who turns away.