Grace the Cat

I named my rescue cat “Grace” because I thought she could remind me to always keep God’s grace at the top of my mind. When I heard that the sermon series would be focused on grace (as a theological concept) and grace (as in the hymn Amazing Grace) I tried to make some comparisons using Psalm 139.


The psalm writer begins by admitting that God knows his intimate thoughts: You have searched me and known me. You know when I sit down and when I rise up. You discern my thoughts from far away. (Grace the Cat, if I even THINK about taking you to the vet, you run so I can’t find you.)


You search out my path and my lying down. (Grace the Cat: When YOU want to go to bed, you search me out and tell ME to lie down.)


And are acquainted with all my ways. (Grace the Cat: If I start to empty the wastebaskets, you know the cleaning lady is coming and hide).


Even before a word is on my tongue, O Lord, you know it completely. (Grace the Cat: When I am sad or upset, you make a special point to stay with me, to sit on me and purr.)


You hem me in, behind and before. (Grace the Cat: If I lie on my right side, you snuggle on the left, so I can’t turn over.) And lay your hand upon me. (You like to put your paw on my face, which seems sweet when you have just had your nails clipped.) Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is so high that I cannot attain it. (You are spontaneous. I can never figure out what you are going to do next.)


Where can I go from your spirit, or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there. If I make my bed in Sheol you are there. (If I sit on the sofa, she is there. If I lie on my bed, she is there. She bumps her nose against my cheek.)


Grace the Cat, nevertheless, needs me to offer grace to HER. If she takes the wings of the morning and settles at the farthest limits of the sea (if she hides from me when I need to help), even there my hands shall lead her, and my right hand shall hold her fast.


Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light around me becomes night. Even the darkness is not dark to Grace the Cat, for darkness is as light to her.


I praise God, for she is fearfully and wonderfully made. Grace the Cat is indeed wonderfully made. To take just one example – her whiskers are a delicate and elegant navigation system.


Unlike God, Grace the cat is anxious, exceptionally anxious. Her previous owner must have abused her. SHE would say the penultimate verse of this psalm: Oh that you would kill the wicked, O God, and that the blood thirsty would depart from me.


The psalm concludes with an invitation: Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me, and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me. Grace the Cat is helping me find God’s grace, so that God can lead me in the way everlasting.


May we all find grace in amazing ways.