Two years ago we got our daughter a kitty for her birthday.
Cleo is a sweet, sweet kitty. Very social, plays with our dogs, an excellent rodent catcher, and has never scratched the kiddos. She is a cherished member of the family. Cleo is an indoor/outdoor kind of kitty and recently she has developed the quirky habit of following me as I take our canine friends for a walk. She follows at a distance so I will occasionally glance back to make sure she's still with us. Yesterday, I glanced back and she wasn't there. Then I heard barking; lots of barking. As I walked over to where I feared she had just been chased I started calling her name. I heard a deep and panicked meow. I walked closer to the meowing and realized it was coming from above me. High above, there was Cleo, nervously clinging to tiny branches in the top heights of a tree. She was stuck. She was in trouble. She needed to be rescued.
I tried to coax her down but quickly saw that she could not save herself. I ran home and woke my husband - what a pleasant way to wake up on a Sunday morning, eh? Together we walked with our ladder down the neighborhood streets to rescue our sweet kitty. Thankfully it is a very tall ladder! I climbed its heights and reached out to grab Cleo. She clung to the branches for dear life but then clung to me after I pried her out of the tree. As we reached the ground a neighbor walking his two dogs strolled by and she jumped out of my arms and darted into a garage. Perfect. After the fearsome tea cup yorkies had passed, she came to my gentle coaxing voice and I was able to scoop her up into my arms. As I carried her safely home, she struggled and struggled against me. The cat who never scratches was scared.
As I tried to reassure her in vain, a small voice spoke to my heart. "This is a picture of you in my arms." I took the thought in and immediately recognized its truth. I in my sin, was hopelessly trapped and in desperate need of rescue. I could not save myself. A Savior came with a gentle, coaxing voice to rescue His cherished one. As He gently lifted me from my entrapment, I clung to what I knew as safety. Though He is gently carrying me through this life to the safety of my forever home with Him, I struggle against Him at times due to my fear. I don't always trust the loving arms surrounding me. As I struggle, and scratch, He doesn't let go. When I leap out of His arms to run to the safety of something I can see, He pursues me, gently calling my name until I come back to Him. He will never stop His pursuit. He will never stop carrying me home. He is not angry with me as I struggle, for He knows that I am consumed by my fear as I struggle. He holds on tight until I become still, and in those moments I feel the safety surrounding me - until the next teacup yorkies walk by. In reality, I am rescued. I am safe. Oh that I could stop scratching at His hands each time I become afraid and instead relax into His capable grasp as He carries me home.