Saturday, October 19, 2013


 A Little Girl’s Prayer

When I was around 10 years old I was introduced to a gray tabby kitten. Its big green eyes, soft warm fur, affection and sweet playfulness charmed me. I went home to my parents and asked them to let me bring him home. I begged and begged, but to no avail. Mom and especially, Dad, figured that though I promised to take care of the cat, they would ultimately wind being responsible for it. Though I begged God to help me out at that point, the answer was still, “no”.

I’d had goldfish and gerbils, but I was growing up by myself, since my brother and sister were already out of the house. Having a cute little cat seemed like the perfect solution to the loneliness. As time passed, I took up residence at Michigan State University, eventually married and started a family.

My days were filled with caring for my sons as they grew, homemaking and eventually homeschooling. My desire for the little gray striped kitten was long forgotten, like a childhood book closed and shelved for many years. When the boys were still young, we went to look at a litter of kittens, but my husband wasn’t crazy about the idea.

When the youngest of my sons left for Army basic training, my days of being needed as a full time mother were officially over. I was used to having someone else around. Each morning I awoke to an empty, silent house. Even after I had returned to school, I felt isolated. Looking for a job turned up dead ends and my time volunteering at Bible study only filled so much of my time. Even Jack said the house seemed as quiet as a tomb.

My sister had a cat named Tigger, a sleek and handsome gray tabby, who would sit near me when I visited. He evoked the memory of the kitten I had once wanted so badly. However, I had married a man who once had an allergic reaction to cats. Jack had grown up with dogs and I was almost sure he was an official card carrying member of “The Cat Haters Society”. It seemed I was doomed to a cat-less life. Two cat lovers who are dear to me insisted that I needed one to keep me company and help fill the maternal void.

I had secretly prayed on and off that some forlorn little feline would appear at our patio door and I could convince Jack that God had sent us a cat. Finally, I appealed to Jack that I needed another living creature around during the day.

Being merciful, Jack approved and we went to Last Chance Rescue, where I asked for a lap cat. The rescue worker pointed out a little gray cat with black and brown stripes. We took her into a sheltered area to get acquainted. She stood on my lap and reached her front paws across to Jack’s. I knew I’d found the right kitty. My husband survived the two-week trial period and the petite cat, no bigger than a kitten and nearly as playful, had wriggled her way into our hearts.

Photo courtesy of my nephew, John Hensel
I named her Lily-bits, because she is just a little bit of a thing. She became my buddy, following me around much of the time and sitting on my lap when she deems necessary. That desire for a gray tabby kitten had been placed in my heart when I was only 10 years old. Thirty-eight years later God answered that prayer and a cat that needed a home was provided with one. It explains why Lily is so special to me, though she is only a pet.

The Lord’s timing isn’t always our timing. In fact, most often it’s not. Often the answer is “no” and we have to ask for the grace to accept that. But when a prayer is answered the way we hoped, we can be assured the Lord will make it worth our wait. He hears His children’s prayers and cares about the big and little things in our lives. He cared about this little girl’s prayer and He cares for you!

Answer my prayers, O Lord, for your unfailing love is wonderful. Take care of me, for your mercy is so plentiful (Psalm 69:16 NLT)

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. (Psalm 37:4 NLT)