I’ve written before that my girl kitty, Diva, teaches me so much about God and our connection to him. Early on, I shared that she teaches me about contemplative prayer. I’ve written how my love for Diva teaches me about God’s love for us, particularly as humans. And more recently, I shared that she teaches me about nature versus nurture.
This morning she taught me something new — namely, that love makes us still.
I’ve noticed a pattern with Diva.
For several days at a time, she decides she’s just not that into me. I try to engage her as she’s resting on the couch, and she doesn’t return the interest. I call to her from the bedroom in the evenings, which usually sends her scurrying to my side, but instead she stays planted in the other room. She’s just not that interested.
It gets rather lonely for a few days, and I miss her.
But then, pretty much like clockwork after a few days, suddenly she’s everywhere I am. She is clingy in an over-the-top-even-for-Diva kind of way. She just can’t get enough of my attention or affection. And since she seems to need it rather a lot, I gladly give it to her. (Between you and me, I’m so glad for her return. I miss her companionship when she’s in those several-days-away hiatuses!)
And then things return to normal. She jumps on our bed at 5 a.m. wanting attention, then settles down and lets us fall back to sleep once she’s received it. She jumps off the couch to follow me a few hours later, once I get up and moving about, fully entrenched in our usual morning routine of sitting at my desk for coffee and prayers for a few hours each day. She alternates between prowling around at my feet and jumping up on my lap and desk during the first chunk of time I’m sitting there.
And then she becomes very still.
Just like in the photo above, she will sit on my desk for long lengths of time, completely content to just sit there. She stares at the same exact spot on the desk or out the window for extended moments. She moves her head slowly to look at me if I rub her head, not really inclined to move around.
She’s just content. Just being. Near me.
This morning I realized it’s because she’s fully resting in love. She’s received her usual fill of attention and affection, received during that first big chunk of time we’re together at my desk, and now she’s able to just rest in it.
Can we do the same?
Perhaps you can relate to Diva, going away from love for long stretches at a time, preferring to make it on your own for a while, only to scurry back to the source of love after you’ve been away, then drinking it in huge gulps because your thirst has gotten so parched. Or finding yourself in a normative rhythm with God, spending time prowling around at his feet or sitting on his lap and letting him love you each day. Or perhaps, maybe sometimes, you find yourself completely content in that love, settled into a place of stillness and peace as you allow yourself to just be you, fully inhabiting yourself and fully loved, in the presence of God.
Where in this picture are you today?