Revisiting Scooter

It was 2012.

The first Avengers movie took the box office by storm, Carly Rae Jepsen beckoned you to “Call Me Maybe” and Michael Phelps wowed in the London Summer Olympics. On a more serious note, the much-probed attack on the US diplomats in Benghazi, Libya took place, and “Super-Storm” Sandy swamped the northeast.

Closer to home, the fall of that same year brought a second year of art college for my oldest daughter and another year of homeschooling her three younger siblings. Ryan landed the role of starting center for his football team who would go on to win the first ever league championship for the East Atlanta Mustangs.

And … I started a blog.

It’s hard to believe that was 5 years ago!  But, since it’s beneficial to pause occasionally and take note of significant milestones, I thought the half decade mark would be good place to do just that! So this month, I invite you to walk with me back through the years as I share some of my favorite posts…  many that are probably new to you!

Today we’ll be revisiting an old friend of mine, Scooter…

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What I Learned About God From A Paraplegic Mouse

“Mom, Mom. Come quick! I need a piece of cheese!” my son, Jason, exclaimed as he burst through the garage door into the back hall. I looked up from my work at the computer with, no doubt, a puzzled look on my face since the urgency in his voice didn’t match the content of his request.


The fact that he’s never been a fan of any kind of cheese added to my confusion. So, I hopped up to meet him for more explanation and quickly discovered that the commotion was due to a tiny little mouse who was sitting on the landing outside the adjacent door. Interceding on its behalf, my son begged me for a morsel to feed him. Against my initial recoil from the idea of a rodent nearby, I told him it was OK to leave a small piece of cheese on the stairs. Certain that the little creature would soon scamper away, I put the incident out of my mind and went back to what I was doing.

But I was mistaken … and soon, the furry sightings became so frequent, that I concluded that this mouse must have had taken up residence in our garage. I didn’t want him (or his little friends) living near our house, so I grabbed a small bucket, easily scooped him up, and gave Jason the job of returning our little visitor to the nearby woods. Satisfied with my role as “mouse liberator”, I went back into the house, certain that this mini-drama was now officially over.

But … I hadn’t even been in the house long enough to remember what I’d been doing, when Jason again called to me from the door of the garage. I came around the corner to see my son standing in the back hallway still holding the bucket. Before I could ask what was wrong, he blurted out his explanation. “He doesn’t want to go in the woods, Mom. He keeps hopping back into my bucket every time I try to let him go.” After only a momentary pause, he continued. “And… there’s something wrong with his back legs. They don’t seem to work.”

I leaned in toward the pail for a closer look, and sure enough, there was the little mouse resting on his behind with two awkward looking legs splayed off to his left side. Before I could say anything, Jason pleaded, “Can we please help him?”

Seeing the concern in my son’s eyes, and instinctively knowing that this critter wouldn’t survive in the wild, I consented to a rescue operation.  The kids fed our disabled friend and then set him up in a make-shift home on a shelf in the garage.

Less than a week later, he was relocated into an old aquarium in the boys’ room and in reality, he was adopted as our new family pet. Somewhere along the way we gave him the name “Scooter” (since he scoots around on his behind!) and at that point, I knew he had not only moved into our house, but into our hearts as well.

13 years old

As I squatted down to peer into the aquarium/mouse habitat late one afternoon, I looked at that helpless creature and was moved with inordinate compassion. How had this insignificant paraplegic mouse garnered the focused attention of the six people in our house? Why did he matter so much to us? With my incredibly busy life, there was absolutely no reason to give a second thought to this animal. His condition and well-being should meant nothing to me. But here I was standing in my boys’ bedroom checking on him for the fourth time that particular day. Somehow, his helplessness had captured my attention and my affection… and as I thought about it, suddenly, I understood the heart of God a little better.

 The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion.
The Lord protects the simple-hearted;
when I was in great need, He saved me.
Psalm 116:5-6

How many of us are much like Scooter? Crippled by this world and too weak to care for ourselves, we crawl along the edge of existence hoping to find a few sustaining crumbs. Emotionally emaciated, we scrape out a life for ourselves, but find little to sustain us for any length of time. We starve for significance and thirst for meaning.

But our helpless state isn’t overlooked or ignored. God, in His great compassion, sees our destitute condition and moves into rescue us. He scoops us up, tenderly cares for our needs and even takes us into His own home, making us part of His family. His loving-kindness gives our lives worth, value and significance. There’s really no reason such a great and mighty God should give us His attention and affection, but He does. And through our faith in Jesus, He fully adopts us and makes us His own.

See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us,
|that we would be called children of God.
1 John 3:1


18 thoughts on “Revisiting Scooter

  1. Karen! What an absolutely precious story ♥ How long did little Scooter live as a sweet addition to your family? I always love how you weave the sweet stories of your family life into God’s love story for us. Beautiful …

    Thank you, as always for joining me each week at Moments of Hope. You are a blessing!


  2. Congratulations on 5 years of blogging! It’s so interesting that I read this story today because my two youngest children had an assignment to catch bugs to observe this morning. I gave them each of a pint size mason jar and one of them caught an ant, the other a butterfly. After observing them for awhile, they wanted to let them back out and that’s when it became apparent that the jar with the butterfly in it had been screwed on sideways and there was no way to get it off. I thought briefly about the fact that I own very few mason pint-sized jars but was somehow seized with compassion for this butterfly and the fact that I could not let it die. This isn’t normally like me as I would usually be more concerned about saving my mason jar. I see that it was the Lord showing me his compassion for one of his creatures that led me to break that jar and let the butterfly out. It’s so interesting how God shows us things through little creatures.

    1. Love your butterfly story! And you know what I see in it… also the compassionate heart of God who looks at his children trapped by sin and knew that He could not let us die either. So He went sent Jesus to ‘break the jar’ of sin and death to release us to freedom! Ahh! Love it! I’m moved with great gratitude to Him that He didn’t leave us trapped!! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Such a sweet story, and meaningful! I got a picture of your son’s compassionate attitude- and was reminded of my savior’s love. This verse means a lot to me, and the story blessed my day! Thanks Karen!

  4. This post is so incredibly touching! How precious! My children have always worried about hurt animals, and whenever one shows up in our property, I’m like “oh no!” Because I know my kids want to keep them all. The lessons and love here in your story go way beyond finding a stray animal in the wild. God sees us, no matter his weak, small, and helpless we are. Your story has taught your children (and us!) about how much God cares about the details… and will make sure to attend to our every need. Wow! What a great piece of writing! God bless you, Karen, and your sweet family (and your pet mouse!) in Jesus’ name!

    1. God sees us! What a wonderful and simplistic thought. Reminds me of Psalm 8:4 “what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” How overwhelming that the Great Creator notices us… and cares for us so completely!

  5. congratulations on your anniversary Karen! I have enjoyed seeing how God has used you in so many different ways over these last five years. You have been a blessing in my life for sure! Thank you

  6. Ahh, what a sweet story. And I love the tie in with the Lord taking care of us little Scooters. I am not a rodent person, but I definitely would have been taken in by Scooter and made him a part of the family.

    We recently were visiting a National Park and came across a ground squirrel we named Chipper who was visiting our porch area. Every day we fed him and cared for him. It is so easy to fall in love with the creatures God made.

    Congrats for 5 years of blogging.

    1. I’m not a rodent person either, but this one little guy was different. Such a lesson for us all that God can speak to us through anything so we need to keep our eyes, ears, and hearts open to His gentle voice!

    1. Unfortunately, Scooter isn’t around anymore. You can read my post titled The Value of Walls for the story of what happened to him. We mourned his passing and buried him in the backyard next to our other beloved pets. He has a photo ornament that hangs on our Christmas tree every year so we always remember our furry friend. It’s amazing just how great our love for him became and how much of God’s heart I understood because of him. For that, I’m grateful that God chose to send Scooter to our garage to find shelter. Thanks for reading, Susan

  7. I love this story. I saw the picture and thought: SCOOTER! Whatever happened to that lil critter! It’s so nice to celebrate you 5 years of inspirational and thought provoking blog! HAPPY BIRTHDAY SWITCHBACKS!
    I have to say, as a hiker, I love the name. Sometimes you feel like you’re just doubling back on yourself as you go. It can be hard to see progress but just like the wisdom of the trailblazer, without switchbacks the mountains would be impossible to trek. And so it goes…Christ takes us on switchbacks and leads us to breathtaking vistas. (A word that both means a view and a window or outlook both literally and abstractly)
    Some days I think I must resemble Scooter, dragging my butt. I know that if my small heart and mind can contain compassion for such a pitiful creature, how much more does my Savior have compassion for me?! Love you all love your sharing. Many happy returns! AND returns! Psalm 126:6 Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them.

    1. Thanks Dawna! Appreciate your encouragement and it was sweet for me to revisit Scooter too. I agree with you and have been pondering what you said… if I can love such a small insignificant creature with such a great heart, how much more does Jesus love me! Wow! You could sit with that concept a LONG time. And the other thought that came to me is that if God can fulfill His purpose for Scooter… that is to help us know His heart better… how much more committed is He to helping His children -made in His own image- fulfill His purpose for us!
      Psalm 138:8 – “The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
      your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
      Do not forsake the work of your hands.”

      1. A lovely scripture on this fall morning as I ponder just this question.
        He WILL fulfill his purpose for me…
        (Not I myself but HE..)
        Just wow.

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