July 17, 2008
I have a fat cat. In fact, he is VERY fat (a 15 pounder on my human scale -- and I know that it is off when I step on it --he has to be over that mark, for sure!) At first, we all laughed at him and called him "tubby" instead of tabby; but, now it is clear that he is not something to be laughed at. I was petting him yesterday and as he rolled over, I was shocked to see just how "fat" he was, especially in his tummy.
Gussy (or Gus - Asparagus) was a runt when we got him. He had been orphaned by his mother and he was barely 3 weeks old. I bottled fed him until he could eat mushy foods. I then kept him on formula for a bit longer than normal, simply because he appeared to have some palate issues (eating/swallowing). At some point, maybe around 3-4 months, he seemed to figure out how to eat and started eating everything in sight. He ate everyone else's food -- which is not a good thing when you have other cats who are very hungry. My other cats, Winston, age 1; and, Zachary, age 18; are not the kinds to be very pushy. If anything they are laid back and push overs. Gus stuck his nose in everyone else's bowl and the other guys would just let him get away with it. I know, bad kitten behavior. In a family of kittens, Gussy would have learned to share and eat his own food because his siblings would have stuck their noses in his bowl too. Unfortunately, Gussy learned he could eat whenever and as much food as he liked. So I have no one to blame but myself -- I have created a FAT CAT.
So, now I need a diet program that will work for him. I am hesitant to remove the free feed because my elderly cat is pretty scrawny and doesn't always eat when the others do. My middle cat is normal size. He is a big boy, but not overweight. I have switched bowls and put down three small bowls instead of the two connected jumbo ones I was using. I am also going to not allow them to free feed but twice a day. I have them on dry food -- cheaper on me and easier for us to handle -- and will not change their food yet. I think restricting food is first. I am aware that with cats, you cannot just change diets or else they can become very ill. I think slow restriction of food is the key (counting calories for a cat, so to speak.)
Oh well...we will see how it goes...
Ps. I will post a before and after picture of Gus later on.
July 16, 2008
Labour to maintain a sense of thine entire dependence upon the Lord's good will and pleasure for the continuance of thy richest enjoyments. Never try to live on the old manna, nor seek to find help in Egypt. All must come from Jesus, or thou art undone for ever. Old anointings will not suffice to impart unction to thy spirit; thine head must have fresh oil poured upon it from the golden horn of the sanctuary, or it will cease from its glory. To-day thou mayest be upon the summit of the mount of God, but He who has put thee there must keep thee there, or thou wilt sink far more speedily than thou dreamest. Thy mountain only stands firm when He settles it in its place; if He hide His face, thou wilt soon be troubled. If the Saviour should see fit, there is not a window through which thou seest the light of heaven which He could not darken in an instant. Joshua bade the sun stand still, but Jesus can shroud it in total darkness. He can withdraw the joy of thine heart, the light of thine eyes, and the strength of thy life; in His hand thy comforts lie, and at His will they can depart from thee. This hourly dependence our Lord is determined that we shall feel and recognize, for He only permits us to pray for "daily bread," and only promises that "as our days our strength shall be." Is it not best for us that it should be so, that we may often repair to His throne, and constantly be reminded of His love? Oh! how rich the grace which supplies us so continually, and doth not refrain itself because of our ingratitude! The golden shower never ceases, the cloud of blessing tarries evermore above our habitation. O Lord Jesus, we would bow at Thy feet, conscious of our utter inability to do anything without Thee, and in every favour which we are privileged to receive, we would adore Thy blessed name and acknowledge Thine unexhausted love. ~Charles Spurgeon
Have you ever experienced a loss of the Lord's presence in your life? I have and I can utterly concur when Mr. Spurgeon says "if He hide His face, thou wilt soon be troubled." I recently experienced such a moment and can tell you how troubled I felt. It was as if all at once I was washed swiftly away from His abiding sense of wellness. I say it this way simply to convey that for me, when I am in His presence I have an abiding sense of "all is well." I feel as though I am sheltered and protected and that no matter what the world might toss my way, I am safe in my loving Father's arms. I have felt, I mean felt, it when He looks away. It is an awful, sinking feeling and the best words to describe it are "utter darkness." I am alone, not just alone like I used to be before being saved, but alone in the sense of "knowing" there is more and I am now on the outside peering in. Thankfully, repentance and confession are the tools of God's marvelous Spirit, and once broken and contrite, the believer quickly recovers and find him or herself back in the blessed "wellness" of the Father's care.
I love Thee, I love Thee, I love Thee, my Lord;
I love Thee, my Savior, I love Thee, my God;
I love Thee, I love Thee, and that Thou dost know;
But how much I love Thee my actions will show.
I’m happy, I’m happy, oh, wondrous account!
My joys are immortal, I stand on the mount;
I gaze on my treasure and long to be there,
With Jesus and angels and kindred so dear.
O Jesus, my Savior, with Thee I am blessed.
My life and salvation, my joy and my rest.
Thy Name be my theme, and Thy love be my song;
Thy grace shall inspire both my heart and my tongue.
Oh, who’s like my Savior? He’s Salem’s bright King;
He smiles and He loves me and helps me to sing:
I’ll praise him, I’ll praise Him with notes loud and clear,
While rivers of pleasure my spirit shall cheer.
July 10, 2008
July 6, 2008
O for a heart to praise my God,
A heart from sin set free,
A heart that always feels Thy blood
So freely shed for me.
A heart resigned, submissive, meek,
My great Redeemer’s throne,
Where only Christ is heard to speak,
Where Jesus reigns alone.
A humble, lowly, contrite, heart,
Believing, true and clean,
Which neither life nor death can part
From Christ who dwells within.
A heart in every thought renewed
And full of love divine,
Perfect and right and pure and good,
A copy, Lord, of Thine.
Thy tender heart is still the same,
And melts at human woe:
Jesus, for thee distressed I am,
I want Thy love to know.
My heart, Thou know’st, can never rest
Till Thou create my peace;
Till of mine Eden repossest,
From self, and sin, I cease.
Fruit of Thy gracious lips, on me
Bestow that peace unknown,
The hidden manna, and the tree
Of life, and the white stone.
Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart;
Come quickly from above;
Write Thy new name upon my heart,
Thy new, best name of Love.
~Charles Wesley, 1742
July 4, 2008
July 3, 2008
Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
Be Thou my battle Shield, Sword for the fight;
Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise,
High King of Heaven, my victory won,
This is my favorite hymn -- I seem to hum it all the time. I never can remember the words, so I just sing what I can recall and then hum the rest. It is a grand vision and reminds me of how great a calling I have received. He is my vision, my hearts true delight. I am nothing; He is everything.
High King of Heaven, my victory won,
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heaven’s Sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.