[forthright] Josephine

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Fri, 9 Sep 2011 05:39:34 -0700 (PDT)
Forthright Magazine 
Straight to the Cross

The Fellowship Room, warm posts and hearty communion.


 by Mike Benson

She showed up on our front door step last week.

Even though she was outside at the time, I could hear
her distinctive "meow" throughout the house. We have a
cat, but Lucky’s voice has a much lower tone and pitch,
so I knew it wasn't him.

I stepped outside to introduce myself to our new guest.
She made a couple of quick circles around my feet and I
nearly tripped. She was thin, small, black and white,
and had a light pink nose.

I'd studied feline dialect over the past twelve years
so I could tell she was hungry. I walked back into the
house, stole a cup of Meow Mix from Lucky's bag, came
back outside, and then poured her dinner in a small
heap on the concrete. She devoured it as if she hadn't
eaten in days.

She stuck around our house for the next few days. I
dutifully fed her–morning and evening, but couldn't
help wonder whom she belonged to. Surely her owners
would be concerned as to her whereabouts. She didn't
have a collar, and I feared for her safety in light of
our proximity to Old Highway 24.

On Friday as I was leaving for the office, I pulled up
to the intersection in front of our house and noticed a
homemade placard which had been duct-taped to the STOP
sign. There was a photo of this very cat, and then the
following information:

Small Black & White 
No front claws
15 years old 
601 818 _ _ _ _ 
Very Loved!

I instantly knew two things–1) the cat's name and 2)
her owner's phone number. I picked up my cell and
punched in the ten digits.

Oddly enough, I got an old man somewhere out in south
Purvis. He seemed aggravated that I had even called and
said that he had never owned a cat in his life. I
confirmed the phone number with him; it was correct.
Apparently, Josephine's owner has posted the wrong
phone number on the sign. I apologized to the man and
hung up.

Lanore and I talked about what we should do on
Saturday. She suggested that I try punching in
different combinations of the last four digits of the
phone number. I switched the 2 and the 1 and pressed
"call." A lady immediately answered and said, "Hello."
I said, "I'm calling about a cat..."

Before I could finish my sentence, she interrupted and
announced, "Yes!!! That's MY cat-that's Josephine!"

I gave the lady directions to our house and within two
minutes she was pulling up in our driveway. I carried
Josephine over to the car.  Her owner literally ran up
to me, snatched Josephine out of my arms, gave me a
huge hug, and then began to weep. "I can't believe it!"
she sobbed. "I just knew something bad had happened to

As it turned out, Josephine's owner had let her outside
late Tuesday evening, but she didn’t return as usual.
The old cat had wandered out of the neighborhood,
crossed the highway, and then decided to camp out on
our porch on Heritage Place.

This whole occasion got me to thinking. I wonder
exactly what happens in heaven when folks repent and
are restored to Christ? What kind of party does the
spirit world hold when a wayward brother returns to his
first love? 

Jesus said, "Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the 
presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents" 
(Luke 15.10; cf. v. 7).

Think about it.

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