Weekend Walk: A Wayward Cat

We have a wayward cat.

He started dashing out the door for periodic jaunts around the neighborhood long ago.  Whenever we found him crouched in the woods with his bright eyes shining back at us, he’d run into the house and hide for an hour or two under the bed.

Those experiences in the wild scared him to pieces.

Still, he ran away again.  And again.  Today’s adventure is the longest he’s had.  Escaping this afternoon, he’s still not home and it’s long past his bedtime as I write this.

We can never understand why he leaves.  He’s clearly terrified of whatever is out there in the wild.  He’s clearly spoiled here in our home.

And yet he runs.

A man once told me that once a cat experiences the smallest bit of life in the wild, you can never successfully keep him indoors again.

It made me wonder if the prodigal ever thought about running away again after he’d returned to life on the farm and celebrated his homecoming.

When Jesus told the woman, “Go and sin no more,” I wonder if it was as simple as that (John 8:11).  Did her memory of extravagant grace sustain her?  Was it as simple as walking away or did she have to fight for change, falter, repent, and run to Christ again and again?

Paul described exactly this struggle in Romans 7.  He did what he didn’t want to do.  He didn’t do what he knew he should do.  This is the continual battle with our flesh.

Like the hymn writer said, we’re “prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love.”

Why do we wander?  Why do we dash out the door at the slightest opportunity and leave the safety and provision of God’s care?  Why risk treacherous territory rather than rest in His love?

After all, as soon as our cat did return home (at 4:00 a.m.) he ran in from the rain to our dry house and was greeted with a can of tuna fish.  You’d think he would understand that home is a better place to be than gallivanting around the woods in the rain sans tuna.

Paul made our choice clear in this same way and that’s my verse to meditate on this week:

The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace” (Romans 8:6).

You’d think given the choice between death on the one hand and life and peace on the other, this decision would be a no-brainer.  Unfortunately, though, we slip into flesh-thinking so easily—-choosing to dwell on worry and anxiety, jealousy, fear, anger, bitterness, selfishness, greed, and more—everything that leads to death.

This week, let’s focus on having a Spirit-governed mind.  We must choose not to let our thoughts run wild into flesh territory.  We must choose if we want life and peace.

How do you take control of your thought-life?

Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer for www.myfrienddebbie.com and worship leader.  Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness.  To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.

4 thoughts on “Weekend Walk: A Wayward Cat

  1. Bill Jones says:

    I enjoyed that Heather – thanks. We have several cats and we’re in the wild so I understand what you’re talking about. And I also feel it – the “prone to wander” part from the song.

  2. greenlightlady says:

    Great message! When our indoor cat escapes to the garden I find her near the house with wide eyes and a bushy tail. The last time her tail stayed puffed out for at least 30 minutes after she came in ( I mean after I brought her in…) and I think she must have had a run in with our rather wild-like outdoor cat!!! I enjoyed this post… it’s so true for both us and kitties. I love the hymn you mentioned. We have learned it in our wee homeschool.
    ~ Wendy

    • Heather C. King says:

      Isn’t it so strange that they keep going when they do end up all wide-eyed and bushy tailed from the experience?! But you’re right, it’s so true for cats and for us, that we wander again and again even when we know we’re better off at “home.”

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