In The Know


A man in New York City had a wife who had a cat. Actually, the cat had her. She loved the cat. She stroked it, combed its fur, fed, and pampered it. The man detested the cat. He was allergic to cat hair. He hated the smell of the litter box. He couldn’t stand the scratching on the furniture. And he couldn’t enjoy a good night’s sleep because the cat kept jumping on the bed. When his wife was out of town for the weekend, he put the cat in a bag with some rocks, dumped it in the Hudson River, and uttered a joyful goodbye to the cat. When his wife returned and could not find her cat, she was overwhelmed with grief. 

Her husband said, “Look, honey, I know how much that cat meant to you. I am going to put an ad in the paper and give a reward for five hundred dollars to anyone who finds the cat.” No cat showed up, so a few days later he said, “Honey, you mean more to me than anything in the world, and I want to see you happy again. I will tell you what I will do. I will buy another ad and raise the ante. We will increase the ad to one thousand dollars.” A friend saw the ad and exclaimed, “You must be nuts; there isn’t a cat on earth that is worth a thousand dollars.” The man replied, “Well, when you know what I know, you can afford to be generous.” 

That story reminds us that being in the know about something can have a profound effect on a person’s attitudes and actions (2 Peter 3:17). When you think about it, the Christian uniquely is a person in the know (1 John 2:20)! “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren” (1 John 3:14). “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God” (Rom. 8:28). “For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (2 Cor. 5:1). “[W]e know that when He [Christ] is revealed, we shall be like Him” (1 John 3:2). “And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true” (1John 5:20). “For we know Him who said, ‘Vengeance is Mine’” (Heb. 10:30). “And . . . we know that He [Christ] hears us, whatever we ask” (1 John 5:15).

That is just a smattering of what the Christian knows and knowing it should affect the way we think and act. Like the man in our story, when you know what we know, you can afford to have confidence about your salvation. You can afford to believe that good can come from bad. You can afford to pray audaciously. You can afford to leave justice with God. And you can afford to grow old gracefully, knowing that the best is yet to come. 

Do others know that what you know has changed your life?