Hissey Fits

Title: Hissey Fits
Category: Devotions
Subject: Compassion
Hissey Fits, Arched Backs, and Short Memories

Dr. Vince Hefner, Pastor
First Baptist Church
Cherryville, North Carolina

There has been a new addition to the Hefner Household, a small Siamese kitten that we have named Sugar. Since we already have two other cats, I figured they would show some resistance to their new little sister, but would eventually warm up to her. I also believed that our oldest cat, Maggie would be the most upset while our younger cat, Jedi, would be excited about the little kitten. Folks, I could not have been more wrong!

Maggie is indifferent to the little kitten, while Jedi has really showed himself. Instead of being nice to the new addition, Jedi pitched a hissey fit, arched his back, and ran out of the room. Not what I would call a warm welcome to a new family member. However, Jedi's indignation does not end with the kitten. He will not have anything to do with the rest of the family, either. When I call for him he won't come, and when I hold him he turns his head in the other direction. It was almost as if he is acting like, dare I say it, a teenager!

I have heard the old expression, "Cat got your tongue," but Jedi has lived up to that statement by giving the entire family the silent treatment. As cats go, Jedi is a talker, and will sit at your feet meowing to get your attention. Now, my talking cat has taken a vow of silence and self-imposed solitary confinement. I guess he is punishing us for bringing a new cat into the family. If he doesn't pull out of this soon, I'm going to take him to a "Cat Whisperer," a person who can talk to animals and find out what's going on to make them upset.

I believe I can figure out what is wrong with Jedi even without a "Cat Whisperer." He is jealous and believes that he is going to be replaced by another cat. He doesn't like change, even from something that does not pose him any threat. However, what disappoints me the most about old Jedi is his short memory. You see, it was just over a year ago when Jedi was the new addition to the family and Maggie, the only family cat, pitched a hissey fit, arched her back, and would not associate with the family for a couple of weeks. I figured Jedi would remember how he felt when he was treated that way and would not act that way to another cat. I was wrong for believing a cat could reason like a person!

When you give it some thought, cats are not the only creatures to have short memories, or act out in the flesh. There have been times in my life when I have wanted God's grace and forgiveness in my life, but would struggle to show that same grace to others. I can only wonder what goes through the Lord's mind when we pray for another chance at life through His forgiveness, but we do not want to forgive someone who has sinned against us. As a matter of fact, I have seen people get down right mad when someone asks to be forgiven for doing something wrong. I guess you could say that people can act worse than cats when it comes to showing love and acceptance in the midst of change.

Colossians 3:12-13 says, "Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other's faults, and forgive anyone one who offends you." I am thankful that our Lord is patient with us when our backs get "arched up" when something don't go to suit us. I am also grateful that through Christ we have the ability to forgive and love one another. Be sure to show others what Christ has done for you. Remember, don't give in to sin. Think about it!