From Siam to Rags: Lessons from a Ragdoll, part 1

My ragdoll in front of my computerRoxy

Life is filled with unexpected surprises, some for the worse and some for the better. But no matter what the circumstances, our perspective will determine how we face each one.

For almost a year now my family has been conniving behind my back, planning a wild surprise for me. They dropped hints here and there, but these never made sense to me. Like one time, my wife said: "It will be like meeting a long lost friend." I tried to think of who they might have invited!

The day I was introduced to my surprise, I was completely dumbfounded. I had no idea what to say. All of a sudden all of their hints and whispers behind my back made sense when I was introduced to the prettiest kitten I have ever seen, one that would soon become my bosom buddy.

I had a Siamese cat after I graduated from college, and she was my closest companion. When she passed away from complications with mega colon, I never replaced her. My kids had pet birds, and I wrote off the idea of ever having a cat again. But now I found myself surrounded by three smiling faces and one furry one. My wife and two boys had saved their money to purchase me a Ragdoll kitten so that I would once again have a loving cat in my life.

Now you may wonder what a Ragdoll is. The breed originated in the 1960s in the state of California where a woman named Ann Baker bred some free-roaming cats, one having a Persian mix. To her astonishment the temperament of the kittens was unique and endearing. She continued her experiments, carefully choosing the look and temperament of her breeding candidates, until she had perfected the breed.

Anyone who has a Ragdoll will understand where the name originates from. My kitten is so laid back that whenever I pick her up she completely collapses into my arms, just like a doll made of rags. Her blue eyes are fascinating. She notices everything that happens around her, and her medium-length fur is so soft that she seems like a walking down pillow.

Unlike most cats, this breed starves for human affection. My kitten is no different. She loves being with each of us. She found her favourite place, on my desk, right in front of my computer screen. At night she makes sure she can be near me, either on my bed or on the table beside it. She purrs almost constantly, but never more than when she runs to greet me after a hard day at work. It sure brightens your perspective of life, no matter how pleasant or unpleasant the surprises the day may have brought, when someone is patiently waiting for you to come home.

Although she has become the apple of my eye, my kitten doesn't even come close to what my family means to me, nor does she hold a candle to the impact my Heavenly Father has made on my life. He, too, has been waiting patiently for me to come home so that He can greet me with His tender loving care. But much of my life I have looked for places far away from what I now call my home. God is my dwelling now, and I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. I hunger for His embrace. I starve for His guidance. So many times my attention has wandered to what doesn't really matter in life. Yet each time He gently nudges me back in the right direction.

"God's love is meteoric, his loyalty astronomic, His purpose titanic, his verdicts oceanic. Yet in his largeness nothing gets lost; Not a man, not a mouse, slips through the cracks. How exquisite your love, O God! How eager we are to run under your wings, To eat our fill at the banquet you spread as you fill our tankards with Eden spring water. You're a fountain of cascading light, and you open our eyes to light." (Ps 36:5-9 The Message)

I want to be where God is at work. I want to enjoy His presence near me. Oh how good it feels to be in God's embrace! I feel at home with Him near me.

Prayer: Thank you Lord for your meteoric love towards me. Thank you for being so patient with me and for loving me even when I ignore you. Thank you for helping me find my peace in you. You are my everything!

Ragdoll cats may brighten your life, but not as much as the One who paid the price for your freedom. If you want to experience Him, why not invite Him into your life. He is waiting patiently for you and He loves you beyond expectations!

Rob Chaffart

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