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O'Malley's Adventure

Created: 3/16/2024 - 1 Comment(s) Christian Theology

As I think back on the day that our cat O'Malley broke loose from his collar and ran into the woods behind our house, it reminds me that I really don't know what's good for me.  As I watched him dart into those woods I imagined him thinking "Oh what a grand time I'll have out here! Here's my chance to catch mice and birds, and make friends with the squirrels, raccoons, possums, and rabbits."  Like him, I often imagine my life will be so much better once I have that particular blouse or purse, car or house, or make friends with Mr. and Mrs. So and So from the upper echelon. 

Unfortunately, for O'Malley and me, the reality turned out to be exactly the opposite of what we dreamed it would be. The day he got loose, my husband was away, and I chased after him through dense woods for two and a half hours. I actually did catch him once when he crawled into a hollow log. I was able to pull him out by the scruff of his neck. However, since we were so far away from the house, I couldn't hold him and he twisted and turned and scratched his way out of my arms.

Heartbroken and crying, I called my husband and he rushed home to help me look for him but to no avail. No matter how loud and long we hollared that evening "O'Malleee, O'Maaallleee, here kitty, kitty" he was nowhere to be found. That night I hardly slept as it got colder and colder, the temperature going down to 23 degrees, thinking about poor O'Malley, lost in the woods with no food, fearing he would freeze to death. The next day at the crack of dawn my husband and I got in the car and nailed lost cat flyers on wooden poles around the neighborhood we thought he would come to at the other end of the woods.

We searched the woods three times the next day, putting out food and calling his name over and over again. At nightfall our next-door neighbors heard us calling for him and lent us a large flashlight but it didn't help. Still, no O'Malley. The people living in the Eastern Shores neighborhood were wonderful. They wrote posts on the group Facebook page to console and comfort us and give us advice on lost pets, and it really did help us not to lose hope. So we went through another night with O'Malley lost in the vast woods behind our house, and we wondered how he would survive the freezing cold and worried he would be attacked and killed by a coyote or other predator.

The next day we were desperate to catch O'Malley so we asked our friends if they had any live traps. They did, and so we borrowed two of them. We planned to put the traps out in the woods behind our house about half a mile apart. It was about 3:30 in the afternoon when we set out to place the first one. I was holding a plate of wet cat food and had the cat carrier over my shoulder while Bob my husband carried the biggest trap. We called and called O'Malley for about 15 minutes and my heart sunk as I thought I'd never see my sweet kitty again.  Suddenly my husband said: "Debra, turn around!" I turned around and there was O'Malley walking toward me! Praise God, at least he is alive I thought.

I knew how skittish he was, so I sat down beside the plate of food. O'Malley slowly went up to the plate and started eating.  I didn't lunge toward him but let him eat a little bit. Finally, I caught him by the back of his neck and yelled for Bob to get the cat carrier. We unzipped it and tried to get him in it, but one side was open and he almost got away again! Thank God Bob caught him and pushed him back inside and I was able to fully zip up the cat carrier. So no live trap was needed, we finally got O'Malley home after 2 and a half days!

So O'Malley learned the hard way that what he thought would be a great adventure turned out to be a cold, lonely, scary time, hungry and alone in the woods. Sometimes I think that if only I had a billion dollars and could take a trip to Tahiti I'd be happy and contented. But then, I think of O'Malley's experience and realize, no, there really is no place like home. Home, where I am loved and safe and warm and well fed. 

Praise God that He has provided a way for me to have that "Home" experience forever. It's called Heaven and it is waiting for me as a happy ending to my life. But I have that assurance only because I accepted His free gift of salvation. I believe that my Heavenly Father sent His son Jesus to Earth to make it possible for me to be right with Him. Jesus lived a sinless life to pay the penalty I deserve because of my lies, selfishness and dishonesty. Even more, Jesus gave me His righteousness so I could be with Him in Heaven forever. Now I have the comfort and hope of seeing my beloved friends, family and pets again. All praise and honor and glory be to God forever, Amen.


1 Comment(s)

Created On: 4/18/2024 11:40:49 AM By: ASims

I LOVE your tale of O'Malley, Debra!!!  This is so fun to read but also a great analogy of our lives--and our need for the Lord in our lives.  Thank you so much for sharing your creative writing talents.