RELIGION: Love received
On August 3, I wrote about two new kittens Michael found in our backyard. He named a kitten Gray Baby, and the one he claimed was named Bitty-Kitty.
As Michel went out to feed them, he spoke softly, accustomed them to his voice, and begged them to come to him. However, mom cat was always there to train them, so the babies stayed with her and didn’t come to us. But they watched Michael sit down and put food on their plates.
Gray Baby slowly got a little bolder. Not letting himself be held or loved, Baby nervously allowed himself to be touched. Bitty and mom were watching and we thought they would eventually follow, but life changed. Bitty left one day and never came back. Mama cat comes back two or three times a week.
Now Michael has started dedicating himself to Gray Baby whenever he gets the chance. Spending more time at the feeding area, he put tasty morsels in the bowl that baby couldn’t resist. Now, with her desire for the tasty treats overshadowing her fear of a human, she had to put up with being touched to make sure she got the treats.
Michael continued to talk softly, spending more time with her…giving her more treats. Then one day it happened.
Baby was sitting near the bowl and waiting for his benefactor. When the human approached, Baby approached and started talking to him (meow style). Michael said they talked to each other for about 12 minutes while he sat there.
Still, Michael didn’t try to pick Baby up or lock her up, but continued to “be there” for her as someone who loved and cared for her. It lasted about a month.
One morning, Michael came home overjoyed with something to tell us.
“Baby, let me hold her! She talked to me while I hugged her! When I put her down, she came back and wanted to be with me, so I sat back down and put her down. loved me for at least 15 minutes. She almost followed me home until she remembered there were other humans inside.”
And it’s been the same for a few weeks. Michael’s persistent kindness, his refusal to give up on Baby, his continued love for her won her heart, mind, and emotions. She’s not ready for other humans, but she’s wide open to whoever she’s let into her life.
Do you realize that God does the same with us? Many people who don’t know Him stay away; they are afraid to approach Him. God is beyond their comprehension, and they cannot understand that God is the one who provides for them and takes care of them. Not reading the Bible, they don’t know the truth in James 4:8 which says, “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. And they will not allow God to come into their lives.
My understanding of this verse is this: if I get to know the Lord and decide to live for him, I will realize that God has always been close to me. John 3:16 and many other verses tell us that God loves us. In fact, he loves us so much that he, in the form of Jesus, gave his life for us so that we could be forgiven of our mistakes, faults, and sins, and live with him forever.
At first we may be afraid to open up to Him. We may not understand his motives, thoughts, and desires for us. And we really can’t understand his love for us.
But God doesn’t let any of that bother him. As Michael did not abandon Gray Baby, God does not abandon us. God “speaks” to us softly, trying to make us learn the sound of his voice. He provides what we need in life, trying to teach us to trust him. He “is there” for us.
Gray Baby has lost her fear of Michael, received his love, and lives a much better life than she would in the wild. In the same way, as we lose our fear of submitting our will to the Lord, as we come to know Him, we will experience God’s undying love and compassion for us, and we we will have a much better life than we would simply live for ourselves.
— S. Eugene Linzey is an author, mentor and speaker. Send your comments and questions to [email protected] Visit his website at www.genelinzey.com. The opinions expressed are those of the author.