Knoxville the Stray Cat


 “And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 (NIV)


It seems that stray cats are always appearing on our doorstep. Most of the time, they are adult cats that disappear after we feed them. One Friday night, however, Norm discovered a tiny kitten at the edge of our driveway. The little fellow was utterly helpless. He limped and trembled as Norman coaxed him into the backyard.

My daughter and I watched while Norman and our son, Josh, fed the kitten and made a shelter using one of the large boxes and a tarp from our kitchen renovation. We took care of the kitten for three days. It was just enough time for Josh to become really attached to the tiny kitten, naming him Knoxville, after our hometown.

When no one came to claim Knoxville, we called the rescue shelter.  The man from the shelter assured us that Knoxville would find a home pretty fast because he was a kitten.

Although Josh was sad to see Knoxville leave, he told me that the time he was able to spend with the cat felt “precious,” like a treasure.  Because our daughter has allergies, we cannot have cats. So, Josh helped with the care of Knoxville, and I’m quite sure it felt like he had a pet for those few days.

“Mom,” he said, “having Knoxville around just reminded me of God’s Word.”


“Yeah. He promises to take care of us in Matthew. We can believe that it’s true. When we rely on God, we don’t have to worry.” (Matthew 6:25-34)

“OK.” I wondered where he was going with this.

“Think about it,” he continued. “We didn’t have to go out to get anything for Knoxville. Everything was already here at the house.”

He was right. We had gotten into the habit of keeping small cans of cat food on hand because we never knew when a stray cat would come around. The boxes and tarp were slated for disposal in two days, leaving plenty of time to be used as shelter.

“It was like God reminding me that He does the same for me, even when I don’t realize it.” Josh said.

He was right. We had everything that Knoxville needed when he showed up at our door.

The experience with the cat blessed my son. My son’s insight blessed me.

Because the times we live in are filled with troubling uncertainties, our days can quickly become loaded with anxiety and dread.

When we trust God, all we need is found in Him. He becomes our help, and the source of our strength. Every area of our lives is manageable because He shoulders these burdens with us (Matthew 11:28-30).

The weariness that comes from getting through another day filled with turmoil and pain can be turned into an opportunity for us to share God’s presence in our lives with others. Peace replaces stress as we trust God to use our struggles for His glory. Even in the midst of trying circumstances, God provides moments of joy to encourage us and keep our hope from dying.


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