Many of you will remember the stories I have told of our partially blind cat, Kitty, who lives on the screened in front porch. She’s happy in her little world. She knows where everything is around her; all is familiar. It’s safe. She’s satisfied with her world. However, I saw that it could be better. Kitty’s porch needed a coat of paint.
Therefore, early one morning this week, I came out onto the porch with a gallon can of paint, some old newspapers to scatter around, and a paint brush. I wondered how Kitty would react. As I took the lid off the paint and dipped in my brush, Kitty approached cautiously. I began to apply paint — up and down went the movement of my arm. Kitty was doing her best to focus on my movements. What was it? What was happening to her little world where everything had been in order? What happened to the two rocking chairs? Where was her bed?
Cautiously she came closer; then she jumped back. Her anxiety was obvious. I talked soothingly to her, calling her name, but I kept painting. Finally, after much heedfulness, Kitty approached close enough so that I could reach out and touch her. Oh, yes, that was better. Her body, rigid with fear, relaxed to my touch. It was me, of that she was now certain. She came even closer. After more minutes, Kitty was walking with ease around the paint can, around me, and then — Kitty was helping me paint. She walked between me and the wall. When she emerged, she was no longer all black on her body. She now displayed a side of white. I brushed over the place where Kitty had helped me paint.
More minutes passed, and Kitty lost interest in what I was doing. She went to her perch, jumped up, and even took a little snooze. She still didn’t understand what I was doing, but just knowing it was me took her fear away. Whatever I was doing, Kitty trusted me. In truth, I was indeed making her porch, comfortable to her liking, even better. It is now fresh and white. The rocking chairs are painted, too.
As I spent the morning painting, I contemplated how we often respond to God when He sees that our worlds need improving. He enters and shakes things up. What is He doing? We like things the way they are; nothing needs changing. We become fearful because we don’t understand what God is doing or why He is allowing something to take place in our lives. Like Kitty, we approach cautiously, distrusting. Fear grabs hold.
However, also like Kitty, when we choose to come close to our heavenly Father, in spite of the fear; in spite of the fact that we don’t understand why He is allowing certain things to take place in our worlds — then like Kitty, we sense His touch. We know it’s Him. We can trust Him. Maybe we even try to help God paint. We might mess up, but He will fix the smudges. Our heavenly Father delights when we come close to Him. He loves it when we desire to take part in what He is doing; when we trust that all will turn out just fine, because He is in charge.
I made Kitty’s world better for her. I would never hurt her even though I knew she would experience some fear at first. It’s the same with our heavenly Father. He would never hurt us, even though He knows that we may experience fear when He begins to change things around. He has our best interests in His own heart at all times. Isn’t that amazing! What pure love.
God is always working things to our good — even when it hurts. We can trust Him with everything that we don’t understand. God will always paint our world to His glory and to our good, and He will do it in perfect time. The Psalmist says it well in the following:
Oh Lord my God, You have performed many wonders for us. Your plans for us are too numerous to list. You have no equal. If I tried to recite all Your wonderful deeds, I would never come to the end of them.” Psalm 40:5