Those cute animals that scurry around yards and up trees.
Those sweet little bundles of fur with fluffy tails and adorable faces.
In our yard, they are everywhere. It is not unusual to count five, or ten, or fifteen in one scan of the lawn.
You may think they are precious. I have been known to think they are precocious little fellows as I watch them out maneuver the bird feeder time and time again.
Ah, but now I know their true identity. They are rodents, and they are little monsters!
As they run around my yard, they choose plants that taste good and they dig and bite until they destroy them. They go for the root and attack the heart of the flower! They like blueberries, and bulbs, and dahlia blooms, and anything else that I have planted. Once they get a bead on a possible delicacy, there is no diverting their attention. They zoom in for the kill.
And squirrels don’t act in isolation. When they find a favorable spot, they call all of their friends and family to enjoy it, too.
I’m afraid, though, that the squirrels don’t just live in my yard. I think I have some squirrels in my heart.
You know those little idiosyncrasies and guilty pleasures that I like to harbor there – the “that’s just who I am” traits that violate God’s plan for me. The “God made me like this” excuses that attempt to cover up the besetting sins in my life.
At first they seem cute – no harm. Then they begin to destroy the sweet things, the kind attitudes, that God’s Spirit wants to grow in me. And when one gets a foothold, it seems to bring others with it – just like those silly squirrels!
- “Did you hear about…..” – and there is gossip.
- “He didn’t treat me right” – and there is vengeance.
- “She thinks she is so special” – and there is jealousy and slander.
- “She won’t get a chance to hurt me again” – and there is unforgiveness, which grows the root of bitterness.
- “Well, fine! – and there scurries some pride.
- “Why does this always happen to me” – and there grow shoots of self-centeredness and a lack of gratitude.
- “They can do whatever. I’m not helping” – and there begins an attitude of slothfulness and isolation.
- “I knew he wouldn’t make it” – and there is a lack of love and a spirit of superiority.
Squirrels! Rodents in my heart!
I am not sure how to rid my yard of squirrels, but I am thankful that Christ gives me some preventive measures and remedies for the squirrels that attack my heart. Check them out.
Colossians 3:1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. 2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Ephesians 4:1I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
Ephesians 4: 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
John 13:34, 35 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
I Peter 3:8 Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:
I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
I have to be diligent not to let squirrelly attitudes take over my heart! Those squirrels are sometimes amusing little fellows, but they destroy!
Excuse me! I have to go run a squirrel off of my porch!
Photo Courtesy of Pexels
Thank you for these encouraging verses to deal with the pesky “squirrels” I confront in my heart more frequently than I would like.
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I am so thankful for scripture!