As a Christmas present to me, my husband agreed to allow us to have a family cat. We were very excited and spent many days searching for the perfect pet. Finally, we adopted a two-year-old gray tabby. I immediately bonded with Sam and he became known as Mom’s cat. When I took him to the vet for a routine checkup, I was introduced to two adorable kittens. They were also in need of a home. I looked at these kittens and knew they were meant for my daughter and son.
How crazy is that? For a household to now own three cats when we had never owned a cat before. What would the neighbours think? What would our family and friends think? I knew this was a decision that was right for our family yet I worried about people’s impressions. I knew that adopting these kittens was in line with improving the emotional health of our family, yet I was concerned what others might think.
I prayed about it. God showed me that I needed to not be a people-pleaser but instead to be a God-pleaser. The decision to adopt all three cats was pleasing to God. I decided to honour Him – we now have Sam, Pippin and Merry as part of our family.
This decision was not nearly as serious as many issues and problems that I’d come across. However, the lesson that I learned is invaluable. I need to listen to God and do things (all things) that are pleasing to Him. The lesson is to fear God, not others.
To fear God really isn’t the same as fearing evil and being scared, but instead having a reverence for Him. Reverence means to regard with high respect; to realize that He is our Creator. God isn’t a domineering, manipulative, angry God. Nothing pleases Him more than when I look to Him in awe.
There may be people that scare me and invoke anxiety and stress but who are they really? When I stand them up beside God, there’s no comparison. Why would I be afraid of a person, when all I need to do is look to God? He is the One I should concern myself with. Am I doing right in His eyes? If so, my heart can be at peace. I can find rest in knowing that I find favour with my Maker.
I’m learning not to do something just because I think it may impress a person, but instead do it because I know it will please God. If I choose to do things for God, not man, I know in His eyes I’ll be blessed. He’ll shower me with appreciation and love. He’ll be happy with me. He’ll bless me and love me. And in the end that’s truly all that matters. The decision to adopt all these cats was pleasing to God. I decided to honour Him and He blessed me with three very fun additions to our family.
The fear of the LORD leads to life: Then one rests content, untouched by trouble (Proverbs 19:23 NIV).