Our new kitten will be one year old next Wednesday. I wish I could give him a book of Bravery Vouchers for his birthday. He could cash them in and have some left over for Christmas gifts! What fun he’d have, and we would too!
When we brought him home from the pound in January, he was extremely nervous. He wouldn’t have much to do with Maurie, who really loves cats, but for some reason, he took to me. We guessed he may have been ill-treated by some male person before he was brought to the Vet. Maurie tried to win his affection by giving him treats and playing with him. He accepted all the attention, but eventually chose to play outside and do his own thing, catching mice, crawling through the leeks and garlic and racing at top speed around the garden beds. If he were inside, he would chew on the corner of the new hall carpet runner! Perhaps he was sharpening his teeth!
I admit he has entertained us occasionally. One day I was doing my exercises on the floor and he wandered in to survey my routine. As I lay on my back with my knees bent, he walked under them as if to say, ‘Look, she’s made a tunnel for me to play in’. He soon became tired of that and I thought he’d disappeared until I became aware of a soft bulge at my right shoulder. I turned my head and there was Basil laying on his back like me, and lifting his little paws in the air when I raised my arms above my head. I called for Maurie to bring the camera, but as soon as the cat heard the moan of the lens, he took off! One of his hates is unusual noises.
Even now in December 2015, he’s still afraid of everyone except us. Cars in the driveway. workmen hammering in the neighbours’ yard and trespassing dogs all cause alarm to the poor little thing He has his special hiding place that he runs to and stays there until all the strangers have gone. We’ve never been able to find it, but his signal to emerge is evening, when he knows the tucker will be put in his dish in the shed.
We still wonder what we can do about his behaviour. We’ve tried giving him toys and he’s enjoyed them temporarily. Balls of all shapes and sizes are left under the couch and behind the doors. He soon gave up on such things as the ‘mouse’ that ran around inside a plastic cage. After he’d chewed the furry grey creature a few times, he lost his appetite for it! Our clever kitten knew it wasn’t real.
Basil’s problems made me wonder if I were like him. Am I unresponsive to God when he wants to talk to me? I’m not scared of him, but I probably have my hiding places where I go when I’m afraid of new things. I forget that God wants to give bravery vouchers to me too! His Spirit patiently reminds me of his love, bringing back stories that I know from the Bible as well as memories of good experiences I’ve had in the past. What a wonderful God we have! He cares about me and he cares about Basil!