Cheeses and Crackers

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In 1959, my family moved thirty miles across Los Angeles. We brought our two cats with us — Cheeses and Crackers. After a few days in our new home, Cheeses disappeared and never returned. But Crackers seemed content with her new surroundings and stayed with us for the next ten years until she passed away from old age.

About a month after Cheeses disappeared, my mother received a phone call from a former neighbor where we used to live. Cheeses was at their door. She had traversed thirty miles across Los Angeles roads and freeways and went back to our old home. Amazingly, Cheeses traveled about a mile a day, leaving her family for her former life. Like Lot’s wife, she looked back. But Crackers stayed with us and remained faithful to her family.

When it comes to our faith, are we Cheeses or Crackers? Do we have the faith to stick with the family God has called us to, or do we long to return to our old neighborhood the way Cheeses did? Paul tells us in Romans 8:14-17 that we are God’s children and have been adopted into His family. How magnificent is that! But it isn’t easy being in the family of God. Distractions set before us every day can cause us to return to our former lives if we do not remain faithful.

Do not allow yourself to be distracted from seeking first His mighty kingdom and remaining in His family (Matthew 6:33). Hebrews 12:1, 2 reminds us that we will have snares and heavy weights in our daily lives, but we must “run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.” It takes faith to stay the course.

Jesus tells us that in the last days “he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:13, 14). We have a job to do: endure to the end and preach the gospel of the coming kingdom of God to all the world. It is not an easy job.

To “endure to the end” takes faith — faith in God and faithfulness to His family. Life is a long-distance race, and we must keep running no matter what happens, not being distracted from our calling.

As the return of Christ nears, are we going to be Cheeses and return to our old lives? Or are we going to be Crackers and stay with the family God has given us? I choose Crackers!

Mike Wallace
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Mike Wallace is the senior spiritual advisor for the Colorado Springs CoG7 and leader of the Montana Fellowship of the CoG7. He is an elder in the Church of God (Seventh) Day and serves a territory about the size of Ukraine. Mike and his wife, Bonnie, reside in Florence, MT. They have five children and six grandsons. On occasion, Mike has been known to raise a sheep or two.