It was bound to happen eventually. Anytime I dare to venture down to my clothes line to hang some laundry out to dry, I am accompanied by an assemblage of stray cats…stray cats that were adopted by me a decade ago, or should I say that THEY adopted me. This little brood of kitties is well fed, and provided a safe shelter from adverse weather conditions, with warm, comfy beds thrown in as a bonus. Although my four felines are technically feral cats, they can’t resist a loving rub on the neck and are happy to respond with some serious purring. There is, however, one exception to that rule, and that exception comes in the form of a stunningly beautiful, long-haired cat named Spooky. Although he is the most handsome of cats, regrettably he doesn’t have a personality to match. He is the most ornery, meanest cat on planet Earth, putting the popular grumpy cat to shame. But today, he finally got his comeuppance.
While I was hanging clothes on this warm, spring morning, Spooky positioned himself in his favorite spot-wrapped around my feet trying desperately to bit my ankles or to cause his elderly caretaker to break a hip. I’ve warned him a million times by gently pushing him away with my foot, or reprimanding him with my angry parent voice, but all to no avail. That is until today, when one of the heavy, wooden poles used to prop up the clothes line slid out of position and bopped poor, unsuspecting Spooky smack daub on his stubborn head. As he retreated in both fear or embarrassment, I concluded that perhaps mean kitty had learned a well-needed lesson.
I wonder how often I ignore the warnings from my Savior and continue in behavior that is sure to result in a spiritual debacle? How often do I find myself so closely attuned to contemporary culture that I crowd out the voice of my God? How often does He gently lead me away from the temptations of my flesh and speak to me with His sweet, Fatherly voice, all in a loving attempt to keep me firmly footed on His path? Am I as stubborn and unheeding as my ornery cat? Do I find myself deaf to the still, small voice of His Spirit?
Biblical history provides countless examples of God’s children who have cuddled up to sin, ignored warnings, and experienced a dreadful fall. My studies in God’s Word have recently taken me through the life of Solomon, son of David and heir to the throne of Israel. “Ask what I shall give thee,” was the generous offer from God to this young monarch, and Solomon humbly replied, seeking wisdom from God to rule the people of Israel. Jehovah rewarded His servant abundantly. Everyone within his realm of influence recognized that “…the wisdom of God was in him.” His gift was so extraordinary that even the surrounding kingdoms “came…to hear the wisdom of Solomon.”
God issued a stern warning to this wise king: “walk in my ways, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as thy father David did walk.” Solomon received strong and repeated admonitions from the Lord to avoid the sin of idolatry, to reserve his worship for the only true God, the God of his father, David. But despite the warnings, we are told that “Solomon loved many strange women,” lots of women, “the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites,” and these ladies became a snare to him. The wisest man of the Bible found himself partnered with heathen women who would lead him down the dark road to the heinous sin of idolatry.
Lord, help me to be open to Your warnings, to the gentle nudge of Your Spirit. If a wise man like Solomon can ignore Your admonitions and destroy his testimony, so can I. God warns us not to conform to the world, but to allow His light in us to transform the world. He admonishes us to “come out from among them,” to be “separate,” not to become so deeply entrenched in contemporary culture surrounding us that our path dishonors God. I want to heed His warnings willingly, submitting to His guidance. I don’t want to learn my lesson the same way my kitty learned his…with a good bonk on the head. And for those of you who are curious, Spooky is fine and up to his old, evil antics…again.
II Corinthians 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,”<div class='sharedaddy sd-block sd-like jetpack-likes-widget-wrapper jetpack-likes-widget-unloaded' id='like-post-wrapper-164683012-3917-62b6981d5ef51' data-src='https://widgets.wp.com/likes/#blog_id=164683012&post_id=3917&origin=wordpress.grandmasgleanings.com&obj_id=164683012-3917-62b6981d5ef51' data-name='like-post-frame-164683012-3917-62b6981d5ef51' data-title='Like or Reblog'><h3 class="sd-title">Like this:</h3><div class='likes-widget-placeholder post-likes-widget-placeholder' style='height: 55px;'><span class='button'><span>Like</span></span> <span class="loading">Loading...</span></div><span class='sd-text-color'></span><a class='sd-link-color'></a></div>