Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

The Stuck Cat and Our Salvation Bringing a Spiritual Perspective to Daily Life

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

The Stuck Cat and Our Salvation Bringing a Spiritual Perspective to Daily Life

Article excerpt

We knew our neighbor had lost her cat and how much that pet meant to her.

So when we heard a faint meow outside our house, my wife and I went to investigate, even though it was pouring rain. Twice we failed to find where that plea of distress was coming from. On our third trek into the cold and rain, however, we finally spotted the cat on a ledge under the second floor of our house. We tried leaning out a window, but couldn't reach her. We tried standing on a barrel, but couldn't quite get to her.

Finally we found a ladder that enabled me to reach her at a stretch. I grabbed her and carried her down, while trying to persuade her not to dig her claws into her rescuer. I did escape unscathed, and we reunited cat and owner. Everyone was happy. The whole incident had taken about 45 minutes.

It occurred to me afterward to think about the incident in relation to humankind's need for salvation. We might wonder at times if God can really be bothered to save us from our transgressions, from sickness, and from dying. Or we might question whether we are worthy of the creator's saving grace. We might even ask if God knows how to rescue us when we've got ourselves stuck in the mire.

I found some insights and answers to these questions in our own approach to helping the stuck cat. First of all, it never occurred to us to give up on the poor creature. We persisted until we had rescued it. Nor did we weigh up the task in the light of the cold and rain. Nor did we ponder the animal's worthiness to determine if it was deserving of our efforts. It just felt right to do whatever it took to get that cat home and comfortable, back in its right place.

Well if that's the nature of two people being neighborly, how much more must it be God's very nature to save humanity from untoward circumstances. If we feel stuck in a morass of sickness or sin, we can think how we're infinitely more precious to God - who is infinite Love - than that cat was to my wife and me. …

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