following hilarious and true story happened to me in
1994. The spiritual parable is very relevant right now
as we are preparing to crossover Jordan and move into
our new land of promise.
Cally had kittens who are now 5 months old and I just
found out that cute little boy kitties can impregnate
little girl at this age. Uh ohÖ I also heard of a good
family willing to adopt them if we have them Ďfixed.í
run out and these little furballs are now scheduled for
surgery. They are supposed to fast 12 hours before
surgery so two bowls have mysteriously disappeared.
Oops, scratch that idea. Normally, mother cats wean
their babies at about 6 weeks but someone forgot to tell
Cally. I am looking out the window, and those precious
little bundles are nursing! Try again...
now in exile away from her babies, food and water. The
babies are crying at her shed door, and she is crying at
them. Itís going to be a long night.
was. I didn't sleep hardly at all last night as every
dog in the neighborhood was barking and I kept thinking
about the kittens. This morning I quietly squeeze
through the shed door so Cally wonít dash out. I manage
to get her in the carrier and when I open the door the
kittens scurry to her cage and they all cry at once.
Cally is now crying and the kittens are alerted.
up the kittens and put them in the box. But before we
can get the lid down, we have lost one. No, make that
two. Try again. And again. This is crazy, we are chasing
kittens in every direction! After 5 scampering attempts,
we simply can not entice them to come to us. These are
now very educated cats. Suddenly two bowls mysteriously
appear. They run to the food. We got em'.
are all packed in the jeep and it sounds like a
traveling cat zoo. Cally is howling. She is banging her
head and body at the door, she scratches to no avail. A
frightened baby pops her head through the little hole in
the box. Her eyes are literally bugging and she squeaks.
By the time I stop on the freeway shoulder, she has
managed to stretch the hole and get her stomach stuck.
She is dangling half way in and half way out but at
least her eyes are back in her sockets and she has a
hardy meow. I carefully tug and pull her out the hole
without lifting the lid, lest I have kittens making a
wild escape. Now Callyís window is snug against the
boxís enlarged hole and maybe they can comfort one
another by being close. I drive into the clinic, harried
and feeling like I had lived a full day and it is only
that lady with the clipboard and why is she waiting for
me in the parking lot? "Excuse me, are you Mrs. Warner?"
I have this bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. "Yes,
I have cats scheduled for surgery." "I am very sorry
Mrs. Warner but we are going to have to cancel and
reschedule. I tried calling you, but you had already
left." "Oh no ó I have to go through the whole thing
again....this time with educated cats!"
way home I am thinking about the scriptural principal of
something being repeated twice. (Gen 41:32) I know this
is a God story. "Lord what are You trying to tell me?"
next appointment is vital because their new owners are
coming into town next week. I am sure they will love
living on a farm, with all the freedom and fun any cat
would want. No matter what, I have to keep this
is now once again the night before surgery. Not a
creature is stirring, and especially not even a mouse.
We have no mice. I have locked Cally and her kittens in
together. Itís better to nurse and have surgery, then
not at all. I think I have slept, but that clock says
4:45 AM. I am wide awake wondering how the little family
is doing. Maybe I should separate them into the cat
carrier since 4 hours of no food is better than none at
all. Itís dark and cold outside, but I am determined to
follow through on this appointment. I rush out in bare
feet and pajamas and jump into the shed, slamming the
door behind me. The kitties are contentedly sleeping
next to Cally! I separate the sleepy little furballs
from her and place THEM in the cat carrier. It was so
easy! All is perfect! Now I can go back to bed and get
for the latch on the shed door and it is gone. The door
won't open! The little wire thing that is attached to
the latch on the outside of the door is missing. It had
fallen off when I slammed the door. I am trapped inside
the dark shed with Cally and her kittens, and I have
this strange knowing that God is definitely speaking to
me. This story isnít just some parable that the Lord is
wanting to tell me, He is talking to me about ME. Itís
me in this shed.
I am now
in exile, in a cage with all the tools for pruning
anyone could ever want. I sit down on an ice chest and
take note of what I have. 2 handsaws, electric pruners
with electrical cord and outlets intact, an ax, and
other misc. items. I push a wire through the little hole
where the missing wire used to be. I put a metal tent
stake through it, I put a stick through it. Nope, Iím
son's alarm is set for 7:00 and I am supposed to leave
at 7:00. I donít know if he will even know I have not
left the house when he wakes. Will he realize the car is
still in the driveway? He probably wonít make the
connection since itís there every morning. My beloved
husband gets up much later depending on what time he
finally falls asleep. I could ax my way through the
door, but he would really be upset having to build a new
door. Itís 4:45 AM so what else is there to do? I can
lay the camping tarp on the floor, unroll the sleeping
mattress, use 2 life jackets for my pillow and unfold a
plastic tablecloth for my blanket. Sounds good to me. I
am now camping out on the floor of our shed in the dark,
surrounded by purring kittens. I start to laugh. "OK
Lord, You got me. Do you have anything You would like to
say to me?"
have snoozed some because I just heard the thunk of the
newspaper in our driveway. I wildly shake and kick the
door. "Help me, can you HELP me? I'm stuck in here!" I
am yelling like my life depends upon it ó I still want
to make that appointment. Silence. Nothing. He must have
thrown it from the street and not heard a thing. Back to
camping. Letís see, the newspaper usually comes about
6:30 AM. I wonder how much longer I get to stay in here!
about 7 AM and I hear footsteps coming up the sidewalk,
stopping in front of the shed. Silence. "Is someone out
there?" "Yes" "Could you PLEASE open this door, I am
stuck inside." "Uh, yes." Door opens. A pale and scared
paper boy is staring at me. "Are you all right?" "Yes, I
accidentally locked my self inside, because the little
wire thing fell out of the hole." He is looking at me
like I am a little crazy standing there in my pajamas. I
donít blame him a bit. I am so happy to be out and
besides that, I donít have the time to worry about it ó
I have an appointment to make. He is rambling on as he
walks away, "I wasnít sure what Iíd find behind this
door, and I went to get help. I wasnít sure about
calling the police. And someone drove me back here."
"Well Thank you VERY much for coming and helping me. I
really appreciated it!"
now outside happily eating at the food dishes. At this
point I donít care how much she has eaten, but back in
the shed she goes. I need a clean shower and to get warm
after camping. "Ding dong, ding dong, ding dong!" The
door bell is ringing incessantly at 7 AM and I am
dripping wet. "Sonshine, please wake up and answer the
door. Don't be upset, it may be the police. I was locked
in the shed and the paper boy rescued me. Tell them I'll
be out in a minute." My son answers the door in a
stupor. Two sheriffs question him. "We heard there was a
disturbance. Was there a fight? Is everything all
right?" "Yeah, my Mom just locked herself in the shed."
They grin. In my robe and wet hair I come to the door.
"I accidentally locked my self inside the shed, because
the little wire thingy that is attached to the latch
fell out of the hole." I don't know if they knew whether
I was talking straight or not. I don't know that I was.
My face is turning bright red.
mortified that the sheriffs had come to our door, I
realize I donít have time to think about that now. I
have just enough time to eat a bowl of cereal, catch
Cally and stuff everyone in the car.
I go outside, jump
into the shed and my son is right behind me. SLAM! He
has just slammed the door shut... I AM LAUGHING
HYSTERICALLY. I roar. I laugh so hard I am crying. I am
holding my stomach, with hilarious tears rolling down my
cheeks. All I can think of is this thing is repeated
twice, it is of the Lord. Two times for the cats, two
times for me.
are scaring me, you are hysterical!" "Well if you had
gone through what I have gone through with these cats,
you would be hysterical too!" I am laughing even harder
while watching my son frantically take inventory of
everything in the shed and do exactly the same things I
had tried. He didn't think it was funny at all.
I decide to forget my husband having to build a new
door, I AM NOT GOING TO MISS THIS APPOINTMENT. The only
way those cats will have their new home next week, is if
they are fixed. We have run out of time. Warning, crazy
women with ax in hand. Slam, thud, pow, a chip at a
time. 20 minutes of repeated blows with the bullís eye
changing upon each swing. Sweat, panting... My son takes
a few swings and hands it back. I take a few then give
it back to him. I am determined to get out of there.
Footsteps. We hear footsteps! The door opens and a very
undressed puffy eyed husband looks incredulously at me.
My normally very kind and gracious husband appears to be
quite perturbed. He grumpily says he just got to sleep
at 4 o'clock and what are we doing axing the door? "Well
excuuuussssseee me!" I wasn't mad until then. Now I am
mad. I march out, rescue Cally, who is now enjoying a
banquet and stuff her and the kitties in the car.
Normally-kind-and-gracious husband is standing at the
door in his altogether, muttering, "May I go back to
sleep now?" That made me madder. Here I had just been
through world war 3 and all he can think about was that
we disturbed him? I am so mad I donít even say goodbye
to my son. I smolder all the way to the appointment.
I am now
home and my back-to-being very kind and gracious husband
reminds me that last night he had recommended that I
bang on the shed door loudly to scare the cats, so they
would hide and not try to run out as soon as I opened
the door. I am feeling very humble for my anger. He
thought all we were doing was scaring the cats with all
that noise and wondered why we were inside with the ax!
I guess our neighbors came by also, since they heard the
ax. What a day.
went fine, in spite of their eating. When I picked up
the cats, they told me to put them in a dark and quiet
place. I left them in the shed with the door slightly
open knowing they would come out when they were ready.
But instead of sleeping, the journey had stimulated them
and they wobbled out the door totally drunk! You never
saw such precious sights as Cally and these little
creatures trying to find their legs. Looking cross-eyed
and with rubber legs they were wandering around bumping
into each other. Their brother, cold sober with no
surgery, hisses and runs away. When they found their
mother, Cally immediately weaned her babies, having no
desire whatsoever to be touched and they were all
planted in their new home one week later.
Over the past 10-20 years God has had a plan to bring us
into a place of enlargement and be lovingly adopted into
a new life. This is known as coming out of the
wilderness and crossing over into the land of promises.
(Deut 1: 5-8) However, pruning or surgery needed to take
place in our carnal flesh, in order for this adoption to
take place. (Josh 5:7)
In preparation for surgery, some time in the last 10-20
years we were placed in exile - separated from our
promises (2 Chron 6: 36-39), went through a personal
famine of hearing and experiencing Him (Amos 8:11), were
spiritually put to sleep in dark circumstances with dogs
howling outside (Psa 35), and confined to a
circumstantial cage with hand saws, pruning sheers and
axes looming over our heads! (Isa 45:9)
This was a dark place where the enemy was allowed
access, confined to the limits of using isolation,
blindness, outside intimidation, cold and uncomfortable
circumstances and unrest. We were quite miserable in
those God-allowed circumstances, and with inevitable
surgery looming in the future, we became master escape
artists, thinking we had escaped the enemy, when in
reality we were running from God and His circumcising
our heart and its desires for carnality. (Col 2: 11-15)
During our many attempts to escape the inevitable, time
ran out. Shepherds of the day were still hand feeding
the milk of the Word. They were doing all the work and
their children were growing up passive and inactive.
Their Ďcropí was close to having adult sized bodies but
were still nursing. (I Cor 3:2) It was time to learn to
hunt for themselves, find their own sustenance in the
Lord, and become active participants in the maintenance
of an enlarged territory. (Heb 5:12)
These children were in danger of passing on family sins
of unpruned flesh if they spread their seed (fruit)
prior to surgery. Through out the years between several
blunders of back-in-the-cage syndrome, children and
shepherds were in prison using battling axes to war
their way out. Time had run out and God sent messengers
to rescue all with the good news of coming glory just in
time to make the appointment with Gilgal. (Josh 4:18-19)
This caused all kinds of commotion. Judgment (the law)
knocked on the door to check things out. We were sent to
get cleaned up and dressed for a new day. (1 Pet 4:17)
Neighbors heard the noise and wondered. And after one
last blunder, Big Father God - whom we have known as
kind and gracious, shows up with a stern look on His
face and opens the door. We come out of the cage in a
mass of tangled emotions. Ouch. Itís time for surgery.
The beautiful part of this story, is that after He cuts
away the flesh and even though recovery hurts, if we
wake up early enough, we will still be intoxicated with
His Presence! The joy of His Presence helps alleviate
the pain of our sinful nature when we displease Him. He
promises to roll away the shame and reproach caused from
our carnal pleasures. (Josh 5:8,9)
to Ponder are summaries of His quickened Words}
PONDER: PREPARATION FOR CIRCUMCISION
precious one, time has run out. I AM bringing you into
the green land of fulfilled promises. You were hand fed
the milk of My Word well passed your time. Milk alone
will not sustain you in the new land I have prepared.
You must learn to hunt, to seek Me for your daily
separation and famine of hearing has driven you to Me. I
know how hard this has been for you. It has felt like
tough love. I have used all that has come into your life
for good and someday you will know them all as good
gifts. I have used these as tools to awaken a
desperation deep enough to move you forward into
Precious, I know how deeply your flesh cries out for
comfort, and how desperately you try to give solace to
unfulfilled love. Please understand that carnal
appetites bring temporal pleasure, but ultimately they
bring death. The worldly appetites will never satisfy or
replace your deep need for fellowship with Me. To feed
them will only leave you more and more empty and driven.
You can not take these with you into this new land of
flesh would greatly multiply if planted in this new
land. Captivity to worldly appetite will place you on
trial before the face of your enemies who are the giants
of accusation. Your flesh must be cut back, for I AM a
jealous Maker. Unholy appetites for the world must go.
Gilgal is of utmost importance for your safety and
welfare as I move you forward into your promised land.
If you cry out to Me, I will give you the will and the
grace to cut back your flesh. I will grant you the joy
of My intoxicating Presence and make the operation as
painless as possible.
was, when they had finished circumcising all the people,
that they stayed in their places in the camp till they
were healed. Then the LORD said to Joshua, "This day I
have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you."
Therefore the name of the place is called Gilgal to this