For the months following my college graduation, I talked often about wanting to get a cat. I never actually looked for one, though, until Courtney called me one day and asked if I still wanted one. The animal rescue center had given three cats to Asbury to be barn cats, but everyone out there thought this one cat was too sweet to live at a barn.
I drove there with Courtney the evening before they planned to let the cats out, and met the cat they called Charlie (having rejected the name Rhino, which the rescue center had given him). He had a nicked ear, and we noted it looked fresh and wondered if it was from the cage he was living in. The next evening on my way home from work, I ran by PetSmart and bought a liter box and food bowl. The cat was mine.
Weeks later, after trying to track down paperwork for what shots he had been given, we got the whole story on Mosby. He has no paperwork, because he was a feral cat, picked up by the rescue center and deemed too crazy to ever be a house cat. He was given shots and neutered, and, like they do to all feral cats, his ear was nicked and he was sent away to be a barn cat.
His story got me thinking how it is an incredible picture of God's grace in our lives. Mosby was born wild, just as we are born into sin. The world grabbed him, marked and scarred him permanently, and wrote him off as worthless. But just as our value is found only in God, so Mosby's true value was discovered only with a true owner, who agreed to take him, love him, and care for him. He was picked not because of something he had done, nor can he ever repay the expenses I incur necessary for his upkeep. He is loved not because of what he can give me. I love him because he is mine.
Just as he was seen by the world as having lesser value than other cats, so also was his identity hidden. His true identity did not surface until he was adopted, when he was given a permanent name and the opportunity to be a house cat. He will always be permanently marked with the scar from his past, but he has been redeemed from that life and can now live in the security and peace a life of love and belonging brings.