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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Spiritual lessons from our cat

On a June evening in 1982, my husband, Tom, and I watched TV, enjoying the gentle breeze that blew through the door. With a soft meow, a scrawny striped kitten arrived on our doorstep. This malnourished cat had sojourned more than a few days before he found this, his sanctuary.

We named him Nicodemus, because he, like the Pharisee in John 3:2, "came by night" seeking nourishment for the journey of life. While the Pharisee sought food for the spirit from Jesus, we discovered that his feline namesake taught us during his 19 years on Earth lessons such as:

Love heals

Our 12-week-old Nicodemus was ugly, awkward and covered with pimple-like bumps. We wondered about his past. Yet, his eyes longed for love and drew us in the way felines do. We were his. Without a doubt, he had chosen us that night.


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December issue

DECEMBER issue:

Advent: Waiting together

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