Drinking From the Poisoned Puddle

One of our beloved cats died yesterday. Rascal was almost eleven years old. We bought him along with a female cat named “Baby” so he could have a friend. We had them both indoors for seven years but due to family having allergies to cats, we had to lock them in our garage. We soon decided that they needed freedom, so during the day, I opened the garage door just enough for them to scoot under it to get out. They would sit in front of our house and all of the neighbors fell in love with them. The children loved to come pet and play with the cats who rarely wandered far from our home. It was not unusual to come outside to go on a walk and see an adult sitting on the grass petting their therapy cat. They were great cats! The one on the left is Rascal and the right is Baby, who is still very healthy, but very lonely now as she loved Rascal.

Every morning when I let them out, Rascal would go drink from a puddle of water on the street that was created by rain or sprinklers. It was in the curb alongside the road, so it was filled with fertilizers, ant sprays, car oil, and who knows what else. Inside the garage I kept a bowl of fresh water for him, but for some reason, he would always immediately go to that poisoned puddle and drink from it every day. I didn’t want to keep him locked up in the garage all day away from his life of sunshine and the many who paid attention to him.

Well, I believe it eventually destroyed his liver. The past few days he couldn’t keep anything down and this morning, he breathed his last breath with a cry. Yes, I grieved. Death is always hard, even if it’s just a cat. Rascal was a great cat.

On our walk today, Ken and I talked of how this reminded us of the lives of so many people these days, especially some who claim the name “Christian.” Don’t you wonder why once we become a Christian God doesn’t just lock us up and make us only drink from His fountain of living water? Why does He not protect us fully from the world by removing us the instant we are saved? Instead, He gives us freedom to choose to drink the good pure water of the Spirit and the Word, or we can choose to go taste of the water in the gutter where sin has collected the things that poison our lives.

Just like with Rascal, the poisoned water of the world slowly destroys those who partake of it. They might not think so at first, but it eventually catches up to them. Don’t be like Rascal, women. Yes, you are free in Christ, but we must not use our freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but instead as an opportunity to walk in the Spirit. There’s nothing good for us in the world: the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the boastful pride of life. Feast on the good and the lovely instead. Feast upon God’s Word. Live out the fruit of God’s Spirit in your lives.

We are promised that we will reap what we sow. If you want to grow in wisdom and discernment, you must be drinking from God’s Word consistently. The world will only poison you if  you partake of its evil goods.  Rascal was just a cat without the ability to realize that his daily habit would over the years kill him. We who belong to Christ know better, and best of all, we have the Spirit of God who lives mightily within us to give us the will and the way to say “NO!” to sin and “YES!” to righteousness. May we choose the things of God so that our lives are full and complete in Christ. If not, we too may succumb to a slow death that drinking the poison of this world and walking in the flesh brings.

Rest in peace, Rascal, our precious little companion. How I wanted so much to protect you from the gutter, but you had a great life of freedom and were much loved while you lived.

But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
John 14:14

Drinking From the Poisoned Puddle