She has, however, become bored. I can sense this as she chases me down the hallway and bats at my heels, sometimes with claws extended. When I return after being gone for the day, she is quite put out with me. Now, I know cats are not always the most social of animals, however, they can get lonely. Sophie is living feline proof! So, we decided to get her a friend…or at least someone for her to think about besides us. (At this time of year the lizards are hibernating, so her favorite pastime in that respect is on hold…)
So, on to the new cat. Since Sophie has such a gregarious personality, we wanted a new one with a personality (or would that be a feline-ality?) that was less extroverted. Enter, Frankie. He’s an interesting cat, 4 ½ months old, all white with tabby ears and tail. His eyes are pale green with an almond shape. But, I think what is most interesting about him is that he is the total opposite of Sophie. The humane society referred to him as “shy” but I think a better term would be “new-people-timid”. He doesn’t seem to need the extra attention that his surrogate big sister does. However, I’m happy to say he has warmed up to us quite nicely.
For those of you who are wondering where this post is going, and rightly so, let me get to the point. Sophie and Frankie have been learning some valuable skills over the past few days. Though they are quite different, they are fine-tuning the art of getting along! I say “art” because for cats, this can be quite a feat. I must say that there has been some hissing and a tussle here and there as they have been learning how to share the same space.
It can be the same for people. Sometimes there are personalities that just rub each other the wrong way. For many of us the need to be right is just too strong. At other times, envy, jealousy or just plain irritability are a factor. The result? Disagreements and bickering leading to turmoil, stress and lack of peace.
God knows that we are each different. He created us that way. But, he also wants us to live in harmony with one another. Time and time again in God’s word, He tells us to put our anger aside. He reminds us to search for ways to sort through our differences rather than allowing them to draw us into conflicts.
He wants us to make an effort to find the best in each other. Of course there are times when we are offended. Sometimes someone has done wrong to us and we are angered and want retaliation. I have learned, however, that a better course is to forgive and move on. I love how The Message paraphrases Romans 12:17-19, “Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you’ve got it in you, get along with everybody. Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. ‘I’ll do the judging,’ says God. ‘I’ll take care of it.’” Isn’t that perfect? God is the Good Judge and we can trust Him to do exactly what needs to be done in every situation. The pressure is off of us! We don’t need to waste our energy bickering or belligerently seeking revenge. As we work together at living in harmony, trusting God to be our Guide, we can live a much more peaceful existence than if we had chosen to do otherwise.
Are you wondering about the cats? Well, it is day 6 and I’m happy to say that the lessons my little furry friends have been learning have been good ones. Territories are being established, rules are being set and most importantly, they have taken a liking to each other. I have witnessed them avoiding conflicts by not always insisting on their own way. Amazingly, they are learning to share. Each day, they are using good sense and have learned to be patient with one another while seeking out each other’s best. Observing them, I can see that they understand they are different and have made a conscious effort to peacefully co-exist. This is something that is not beyond our human abilities. As we each seek out the best in each other, setting aside our differences, God will bless our effort… and that, my friends, is a beautiful thing.