In one sense, yes, he is just a cat. His name is Citrus. He is about nine years old. He is huge. He drools. And in his mind I believe he thinks he is a small cat by the way he plops down on a person's lap.
But then there is the other aspect of him.
He's also a memory and an answer to prayer.
Back in 2006 my family and I were renting a house from a local farmer. We wanted to buy our own place. We'd been looking for over two years but nothing suitable was found.
And then in February of that year my daughter Maggie began praying every night, "Jesus, I want a big fat yellow cat. Please, give me a big fat yellow cat."
Why did she want a big fat yellow cat?
I have no idea.
We couldn't have pets since we were renting but she prayed this prayer nightly nonetheless.
And then a place came open! We found a place that would become ours. This meant we could have pets. And this meant I began to pray, "Oh Jesus, let me answer my daughter's prayer."
I looked online to see what our local humane society had for yellow (or orange) cats. There were two: Citrus and another called Popcorn. I liked the look of Citrus. The next Saturday (which was visiting day at our Humane Society) the kids and I went to meet Citrus.
And fell in love.
I asked the ladies if they could hold him for me for about a month until we moved into our home. They told me they'd never done that before but they would.
And so on May 13, 2006 a wonderful woman delivered Citrus, the answer to my Maggie's prayer, to our new home.
He's now missing. He's been missing for five days or more. He's never done this before and I'm afraid he's gone for good.
I know. I know. He's just a cat.
But he also is so much more.
He was an answer to my daughter's prayer, my daughter who now lives in heaven.