Thursday, March 22, 2012

Guest Post: Wendy Giles

Lessons Learned from Tiger

We have a cat named Tiger who must have gotten into a fight. On a Sunday afternoon we realized he had a huge, gaping wound, and we were concerned that it needed immediate medical attention. It's important to note that this is not an indoor cat. His mother was abandoned when she was quite young, and pregnant. She had her kittens in our neighbors yard, but brought them to our yard as our neighbors have a sprinkler system which kept getting them wet. At any rate, Tiger is her kitten, and although he has been showered with love and attention from our boys since he was about six weeks old, he is still mostly feral. We had him neutered and we love him and feed him, so in that sense he is our cat.

We took Tiger to the hospital and found out he needed surgery, and two weeks of indoor living. This has been hard on him- and us as well. I felt like God wanted me to take note of a few things that I was witnessing about Tiger's behavior because the Lord was wanting me to see some insights into either myself or my relationships with others. At first I felt like I needed to go point by point and explain each one, but I think I'll leave it open to the reader's consideration. The main points that make this understandable is that Tiger must wear a cone. We had to clean his drains twice a day to prevent infection, and he had to be shut in the bathroom at night to keep him from getting into things in the house or failing to use the litter box. Also, because of his strange smell and appearance, his own mother has not recognized him yet as her own son, and continues to hiss at him- very sad!


Lesson I've learned from Tiger:

  • Feeling trapped can make you destructive.
  • Sometimes help can look a lot like punishment.
  • We can mistake family for strangers because of smell/appearance.
  • It's hard to eat and drink on your own when you're wearing the "cone of shame".
  • That's when you step in and feed them by hand.
  • Medicine that's hidden in food goes down more easily.
  • The treatment against infection is sometimes painful.
  • The one stuck outside wants desperately to be inside. The one inside desperately wants to be outside.
  • We can't always see the big picture.
  • Two weeks seems like an eternity.
  • It's awful to not be able to scratch your own itch, and such a relief when someone comes to help.
  • It's easier when you don't fight it.
  • Wounds require a great deal of care to heal properly.
  • Fighting can be quite costly and painful.
I have to admit that I have been reminded of a couple other things which are much more touching and beautiful:

  • God didn't set a limit on how much He was willing to pay for my sake. 
  • He understands the groaning of my heart which are much too deep for words. 
  • He is patient and attentive to detail in caring for my needs which continue throughout my entire life, and not just two weeks.
  • He is compassionate even when I am frustrating.

I know this list could go on a lot longer, but I will end it for now. I'm sure many others have been put in similar situations, and also have learned valuable lessons.







Tovah said...

Very, VERY good! God uses all of creation to teach us of HIs mercy and His incredible love. Thanks for this great post Wendy! Awesome!

co_heir said...

I cannot even begin to tell you how much this has touched my heart and encouraged me! Thank you for letting the Father speak through you.

Bill said...

I was raised up with cats of all kinds and colors. I'm a cat person. I can relate. But I appreciate you and Father for sharing this. The insights minister. Thanx Wendy!