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Thankful for gray kitties, gray areas

By Darcy L. Fargo

Darcy Fargo

November 24, 2021

Apparently, we collect oversized cats.

Up until recently, my family had three large, elderly kitties. All three are rescues, and all three of them arrived at our house as very large kitties (16, 18 and 24 pounds).

A few months ago, a friend alerted me to another large kitty that needed a “fur-ever home.” Having no intention of adopting another cat, my husband and I went to the hardware store where the cat was living in a cage to see just how large it was.

I’m sure you see where this is going.

We fell in love with this cat, and we adopted him, too. This cat, now named “Jay,” is very young, though he is another very large cat (he’s very tall and has a very large head and long tail, though he’s still growing into his body).

As I was lounging in my bed on a recent Saturday morning, Jay decided to join me. He leapt onto our fairly tall king-sized bed from the floor. Despite his size, the impact was so smooth, I didn’t even notice he had made the leap.

“I can’t believe how graceful this cat is,” I said to my husband.

Seconds later, Jay walked up beside me. As I was petting him, he just flopped down on the bed like he had fainted.

“Forget what I said about him being graceful. He’s an awkward, clumsy oaf.”

I sometimes have a habit of seeing things as black and white. The cat is clumsy or he’s not. The meal was good or bad. I like the person or I don’t.

Why not both? Jay had me reflecting that he can be graceful in certain situations and clumsy in others. He’s not black and white, he’s gray (literally and figuratively).

I was recently recounting a slew of what I saw as hardships to a trusted advisor (vehicle problems, health issues…). I was focusing on “my bad luck.” This trusted advisor gave me a reality check.

“So, you had no good times in between the hardships?” she asked. “It’s all bad?”

I was choosing to focus on the hardships. I was ignoring the good times. I was making it black and white when the situation was much grayer.

Similarly, I can be holy in some moments and wholly awful in others. While I tend to focus on one or the other (usually the latter), I can be both. I’m trying to be holy, but I’m human, and I fall short of that goal often.

As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this week, I’m grateful to God for the gray areas. I’m grateful to God for both my gifts and my brokenness. Both are part of how God made me and both are part of how He draws me to Him.

And I thank God for my oversized cats.

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