Why can’t I be more like my cat? Sometimes I unintentionally step on my cat’s tail or purposely push her out of the way. Does my cat hold a grudge? No. Moments later she is seeking my affection, even purring in my lap, apparently having forgotten my indiscretion. It is like it never happened.
But I can hold grudges and remember hurts for a long time.
And why can’t I be as patient with people as I am with my rabbit? Rabbits. I’ve had several over the years. One was a real sweet bunny. The other 2, not-so-sweet. Rabbits can be challenging pets and my current bunny is…cautious, nervous, and sometimes grunts and lunges at me when I put my hand in the enclosure. A rabbit who grunts is not pleased, and rabbits have sharp teeth!
Yet, I like my rabbit – she is a real cutie with a unique hairdo. (She is part lionhead, and thus has long wispy hair around her head.) I am so patient, and tell her she is so silly to lunge at me! I enjoy giving her special treats like spinach, apple, and carrots.
But a human being who does the equivalent of grunting and lunging at me? That is hard to tolerate. I want to grunt and lunge back. Maybe the human needs a cuter hairdo! Yeah, that’s it.
“Walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness…” Ephesians 4:1-2
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23
“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:13