Dead Cats and the Gospel (Great Expectations, Day 5)

Dead Cats and the Gospel (Great Expectations, Day 5)

Written by Natalie Foreman

So today, I had a cat euthanized. It was not my expectation, not even close. (Most likely because I don’t own a cat.)

When I came to work, I expected to get some work done, some planning in the books, and some emails deleted. I thought it would be a normal day at the office. It wasn’t, not even close. But it did prompt this devotion.

The day before, I saw this white cat traipsing around the church bushes. It was leisurely enjoying the windy day. Today, the cat was laid in a heap of pain in the churchyard. It was still and unresponsive to sound. If there were breaths, they were so shallow they weren’t noticeable.

I felt bad for this cat and tried calling the city, so they could help me deal with it. My honest expectation was that a city worker would come and take care of this dying cat, but yet again my expectation was wrong. Just a little tidbit- the city only handles dogs, not cats, because only dogs are “aggressive”. I am pretty sure I have been attacked more viciously by cats, so their policy surprised me. Rather than the city taking the cat, today I had to take the cat to the vet to get euthanized. It was a sad event, but it was what needed to happen for this poor little cat. 

Which led me to this thought: Suffering without hope is just plain cruel.

I tell you this sad story, because it reminds me of why we spread the Gospel. Why we fundraise and work hard to go to a country on the other side of the world. Without Jesus, we are suffering in a world without any hope. Without Jesus, we are just like that poor cat. If we suffer in this world without hope, what would be the point?

We are reminded in 1 Peter 5:10, “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” God doesn’t want or allow us to suffer without hope. He sent His Son to be hope.

Our labor is not in vain. We have the incredible opportunity to spread hope to a world that only offers suffering. We offer love to a world that only offers hate.

When I think about expectations and how they often play out, they never really line up with reality. This week allow God to set up your expectations, align your expectations with His promises. Proverbs 16 is one of my favorites, because of all the hunks of wisdom that ring with so much truth. Verse 9 tells us, “In their hearts, humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.” Allow God to guide your steps this week. Revel in the knowledge that He loves you and that we have the CALLING and OPPORTUNITY to share that HOPE and LOVE with the world around us.

If you see someone suffering, or maybe even a cat, don’t be afraid to show mercy and share the love with them. Don’t let people suffer without hope but allow people to see God’s hope through you.

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