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“Time spent with cats is never wasted.”

--Sigmund Freud

“In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods. They have not forgotten this.”

--Terry Pratchet

“As every cat owner knows, nobody owns a cat.”

--Ellen Perry Berkeley

“There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.”

--Albert Schweitzer

“Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.”

--Robert A. Heinlein

I am a cat owner. Well, there is a cat that has taken up occupancy in my home. Two cats, to be precise. Their names are Wallace and Gromit.

And I think I’m falling in love.

For those that know me pretty well I’m as shocked as you are. Because I don’t do pets. I’ve tried. The good Lord knows I’ve tried. We’ve had fish and an old guinea pig. They died. We got a dog but I. just. couldn’t. handle. it. We had to give him away. Because of me.

But two of my three children desperately wanted a pet. They were GOING TO DIE if we didn’t get a pet. PLEASEPLEASEPLEASEDADDY!

I really love my kids and I want to bring joy into their lives. So I thought about it. I prayed about it. I researched. I talked with my oh-so-patient wife. Together we made the decision that a cat would be the best option for an “interactive, low-maintenance” pet.

But then we ended up with two because everyone told us that it’s easier that way. They take care of one another, keep each other company. Wallace and Gromit are brothers. Flamepoint Siamese. Active, inquisitive, with those summer-sky blue eyes characteristic of the breed.

Sometimes we sacrifice something for the other and we find an unexpected joy.

I agreed to get a kitten (kittens!) because I love my children. I counted the cost and was willing to sacrifice my preferences to serve them. That’s what we do for those we care about.

I was geared up to have a positive attitude and expecting to “tolerate” the little fur balls. I wasn’t expecting to like them as much as I do. It’s fun to be surprised.

As Christians we are often called to sacrifice our individual preferences for the good of the whole. Especially in a church family. We give up something we want in order to serve others.

This often isn’t easy but it should bring joy to our hearts to see others benefit from our sacrifices. It’s a sign of maturity. And—who knows? God might just surprise us. We might discover that the thing we thought we didn’t like isn’t so bad after all.

We might even love it. Like a cat.

Pastor Paul

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