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God & Me - Stories

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The first ten years of Hope’s life were pretty typical for a cat. Born last to a family with an older brother and sister, Hope was anything but a runt. She made her presence known whenever possible and Mom seemed to dote on her. And of course, Hope was very curious about everything. She was quite the explorer, but was never out of line of sight of her family. Hope also loved to play and learn new things but wasn’t allowed to do many of things that her brother and sister got to do. Hope would get the same answer every time she asked: “You can do that when you get older.” Hope couldn’t wait to get older so she could do all those fun things.

Hope’s typical life changed in her early teens. The family had to take Mom to the hospital because she had been sick with something called cancer. Hope thought everything would be okay because Mom had been sick before and gone to the hospital and then had come home. But Mom didn’t come home this time and Hope was really angry about that. She was angry because of what she knew of this person named God; He wasn’t doing a very good job. First Hope’s grandfather died even though she had said her prayers then her mom dies after saying prayers. Hope hissed at this God person, turned tail and was not going to have anything to do with Him. Hope was also angry at her dad because shortly after her mom was gone, she had a new “mom”, Prissy. Well, talk about hissing and turning tail! Hope tried to have as little to do with those adult cats as possible. She started to stray further and further away from the house, especially at night. She told herself that’s what cats do, we’re nocturnal. Besides, she was “older” now and could do what she wanted. She could take care of herself.

Hope started hanging out with a new cat named Desire. Desire was a lot of fun. Hope was still learning and working for the things she wanted, but she was also getting into things that made her whiskers tingle and her tail curl. Hope also discovered that if she purred a certain way that she attracted some cute tom cats!

Desire followed Hope when she moved to Los Angeles. There, Hope met some really cool cats, Free and Indy. Living away from home was the cat’s meow! More things to learn and places to explore. Isn’t this what life is all about? Do what you want when you want with no body checking to see what time you get in? Another cool adventure!

At some point, Hope had a feeling come over her regarding her relationship with her dad. She somehow knew that she needed to let go of the past and just deal with the present. She didn’t say anything to him, but she did feel better about her cat-titude towards him.

Hope continued on her “cool adventure” for quite awhile, writing every year in her “Whisker Whispers” journal that “next year has to be better” and that she would find the right tom and find the right career for her. She had met a lot of alley cats along the way and she still didn’t know what she wanted to do with the rest of her lives. She knew she had a few left as she must have been being “watched” over because she had been in several accidents and various other predicaments that she wasn’t quite sure how she had survived. Hope wasn’t angry with that God person anymore but really didn’t have feelings one way or another towards who He was. She still had her pals, Free, Indy and Desire. She had it made, right? Didn’t have to answer to anyone, able to come and go as she pleased? But Hope knew something else was out there for her and she just hadn’t found it yet.

Hope’s relationship with Prissy, her second mom, had improved over the years. They didn’t make each other bristle as much and claws were sheathed most often. Dad had actually made a pretty good choice! Sadly, Prissy became ill with a disease called cancer, just like Hope’s mom, but in a different part of her body. Prissy slowly became weaker and thinner and turned a funny color. She spent most of her last days in bed and didn’t talk anymore. Hope was at her bedside one evening when out of nowhere this cat appeared. Hope didn’t remember seeing her before. Her name was Grace. Grace told Hope that Prissy would be alright and that she was going to be with that God person. Grace also told Hope that she would be okay and that things would be better for her as well. Hope didn’t notice when Grace left, but it felt like she was still there. Hope had a warm feeling on her insides like she got after drinking a saucer of milk.

After this evening, Hope felt different. She thought about things differently and saw things differently after meeting Grace. Hope hasn’t seen Grace physically since but feels her presence daily. Hope still prowls around with Free, Indy and Desire once in awhile but not nearly as much as before and definitely not in the places or doing the things done previously. Hope’s whiskers start twitching and her tail swishes back and forth if she heads down one of those alleys. These days Hope is more interested in learning all she can about this God person and why it’s better to be accountable to Him instead of to her self.

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Copyright © Michelle Mendenhall. All rights reserved.
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