Street Stories

Weblog of Seattle minister to the homeless Rick Reynolds, Operation Nightwatch

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Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

Caring for human beings seems like the best use of my time, homeless or not.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Dead Cat

I dug this out from 1996 -- it pays to clean your desk!
A young man in a bar handed me a Coke, asked to talk.
"I killed a cat," he began. "I hunt for food, I've broken a deer's neck with bare hands, to feed my family. The cat was an accident."
"It bothers you. . ."
He nodded. "I couldn't bring myself to finish her off. She was really suffering."
The great question was "Why?" Why did this innocent animal suffer and die? "I love animals."
Think about the insanity of life -- where people with houses are afraid of people without houses, and sick people are sleeping in cars. One dead cat doesn't really seem to amount to much.
And yet. Here's a guy, the usual testoterone driven, gun owning, tough guy. And he's all in knots about a dead pet.
"Could it be, that cat died to bring you closer to God?" I know it was a stretch. Theologically, I was at the edge. But there was something oddly okay about this tough guy in a tough bar telling God he was sorry about the cat, and getting some peace about it.
"Maybe I'll see that cat again, huh?" Maybe.
Won't that be a story?



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