The Lesson of the Cat

There is a great urban legend about two young men in college trying to impress their dates. One of the men borrowed his father’s fancy Lincoln for the occasion, and the other made reservations at the fanciest restaurant in town. The young men had scrimped and saved for this very special date, and everything was going well until the driver accidentally ran over a cat.

The girls were frantic and insisted they find the owner of this poor, dead pussycat. The boys were stuck between a rock and a hard place. They absolutely had to make the reservation, but they also wanted to do what’s right. Fortunately, one of the young men had a brilliant idea. “Why don’t we take the cat with us, and after dinner, we can find the owner?”

Reluctantly, the girls agreed, and the young man put the unfortunate cat into a Macy’s shopping sack, lovingly wrapped in tissue paper, and put it in the trunk of his father’s car. When they arrived at the restaurant, the young man wisely didn’t want to stink up dad’s Lincoln, so he put the sack on top of the trunk, and they all went inside and were seated by the window.

As dinner progressed, they noticed an obviously very wealthy woman walking by their car. She spied the bag, looked left, and looked right and deftly snatched the sack and carried it inside. The waiter seated her and took her order. She kept glancing down at her newly stolen treasure, curious to know what she had purloined. Finally, she couldn’t contain herself. As her salad arrived, she serendipitously pried open the bag, spied the dead cat, and screamed before she fainted face-first into her bleu cheese dressing.

The waiter rushed to her side and helped her up. She saw the bag again and passed out once more. The paramedics quickly arrived, strapped her onto a gurney, and wheeled her to the waiting ambulance. They carefully collected her purse and shopping bag and placed them by her side for the duration of the ride to the emergency room. Sadly, every time she regained consciousness on the way, she saw the sack, was reminded of her immorality and passed out again.

All of our actions have consequences. The book of Revelation concludes: “And I heard a voice from heaven saying, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Blessed indeed,” says the Spirit, “that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!” (Revelation 14:13)

What deeds will follow you into glory?

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