Posted in Family, forgiveness, Grace, life, Scripture, thankful, Trials, wisdom

Between a Rock & a Hard Place

Now if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God—who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly—and it will be given to him.” James 1:5

Dewayne, we have a problem.” It was Judy got my attention as I was going out to the garage to get something.  I think I know how it must have felt when the crew of Apollo 13 uttered those now famous words, “Houston…we have a problem.” I had started painting our upstairs bathroom. You need to know I am no Michelangelo, and this was not going to be a Mona Lisa. Into that melee came the news.  “We” have a problem.

I quickly explained to Judy that I didn’t have time for a problem.  My paint was drying and some of it was in the wrong place, like the floor.  She told me there was a cat trapped in her car.  Wait.  What?  Now the night before she had told me she saw a cat go in our garage and I should check before I closed it up for the night.  About 9.30, I went out and did the “here, ktty, kitty” thing, shined my flashlight around in the corners and such.  No cat. “Good.” I said.  Or not.

Now it turns out our homeless friend didn’t move on—he moved in.  The crazy part was that it took up residence in the engine compartment of her car.  Silly cat.  I was going to say, “Stupid cat” but I thought you might think me harsh.  So anyway, I left the drying paint in the bathroom to attempt a rescue.  It was about then that I discovered why it is so expensive to work on Volkswagen cars.  You open the hood to only discover that every square inch is stuffed with something.  And somewhere in all of that was the cat.  Silly cat.

A friend was there with Judy and all three of us looked and prodded, we called and cooed and saw nothing, we just heard the occasional meow of the cat. Judy volunteered to look if I jacked up the car to see if we could see underneath.  I did and she couldn’t.  It was time to call in the calvary.  I called my neighbor Jared, who manages a local tire place.  Surely, he would have an idea.  As we waited for him to arrive, we continued to prod and poke, coo and call.  In my sweetest voice I kept saying, “Hey silly cat, come here silly cat.”  I wanted to say stupid cat, but I was trying to be Christian about this whole deal.

Then it happened.  The cat, who turned out to be the cutest kitten south of Chicago wiggled out of its tight spot and ran to the corner of the garage.  We then moved from poking and prodding under the hood to poking and prodding in the corner filled with stuff we didn’t need.  Cute or not this kitten was about to mash my button. Not to bore you with details but four grown adults spent the next ten minutes chasing this cute little silly cat from one corner of the garage to the other.  From behind the washer and dryer to the corner of no return, we played hide and seek. Finally, the cute little kitten saw the light of day, ran through our friends hands and legs and out the door.  Game. Set. Match.

The cute little silly kitten was on the run and that was all that mattered.  Jared went back to work, the ladies went on with life, and I went upstairs to scape dried paint off the floor and I know I heard this kitten laughing from across the street.  So, what is up with all this?   Surely the kitten knew better.  Surely, he or she knew the danger of living under the hood of a car- but probably not.  To the cute little kitten, it was just a place to hide.

You see the kitten wasn’t silly, the kitten wasn’t stupid (well, not really stupid anyway). The kitten just lacked experience.  It was naive. It hadn’t lived long enough to understand the dangers of garage living.  And do you know what?  That is true of a lot of us. Solomon, the wisest guy to ever live, wrote in Proverbs, “I saw among the inexperienced, I noticed among the youths, a young man lacking sense.”  And the crazy part was that it had nothing to do with age.  We have all made some crazy decisions at one time or another. Too often we just throw common sense to the wind and well, we end up with a train wreck.

The good news is that God is in the train wreck avoidance business.  That’s what He led the half-brother of Jesus to write in James 1:5, “Now if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God—who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly—and it will be given to him.” If we would do that one simple thing, we could avoid a lot of painful situations.  Just stop for a moment, ask God if this is the wise thing to do, and wait for an answer.  By the way, silence might be an answer, so don’t miss it.

Well, I hope our cute little kitten found a new place to live and hopefully it wasn’t in someone’s engine compartment.  And I hope we will learn to trust a wise, loving Father to give us the wisdom we need to live better lives with fewer regrets and better consequences.  You know He loves you, don’t you?  He wants you to come to Him and rest in the safety of His arms.  He wants you to know He has this.  And He does.  Bro. Dewayne