Friday, November 21, 2008


Anyone who has read this blog of mine, knows that I hate skinks. It's not a love/hate relationship.

It's all hate.

Jim reminds me all the time that they eat bugs.

I'd rather have the bugs.

But, today after reading my devotion from Spurgeon, I decided that those darn skinks are smarter than me.

And, that thought doesn't make me feel real good about myself.

Spurgeon's devotion this morning came from Proverbs 30:14. Actually, it wasn't from this morning. It was from last night. I just read it this morning.

"The rock badgers are a people not mighty,
yet they make their homes in the cliffs."

"Conscious of their own natural defenselessness, the rock badgers resort to burrows in the rocks and are secure from their enemies. My heart, be willing to learn a lesson from these feeble folk. You are as weak and as exposed to peril as the timid badger; be as wise to seek a shelter. My best security is within the fortress of an unchanging Jehovah, where His unalterable promises stand like giant walls of rock. It will be with you, my heart, if you can hide yourself in the bulwarks of His glorious attributes, all of which are guarantees of safety for those who put their trust in Him."

When I was reading about the rock badgers and how they hide from their enemies, I thought about the skinks. They love to make their homes in any hole they can find. Under the slab the air conditioner sits on. In any old pipe. It seems one of their favorite places to live are in the holes naturally carved into the oaks that surround our house.

Although Jim has been able to catch a few of them and haul them down the street to the woods, we still have a few who are too smart for him to catch. They never venture far away from their safe place. As soon as they hear or feel footsteps, they run right back to safety.

There's a skink that lives out front in the bottom of an oak tree. Jim knows it's there, but for the life of him, he can't catch it. It never gets far enough away from its home so Jim can use his "homemade skink-catching device". If the skink would just wander a little bit further out into the yard; if it would forget about the danger out there; if it would put down its guard just one time, Jim could get it. That skink would be caught.

And, I'd be doing my "skink-caught celebration dance" as Jim carried it away to its new home!

But, I'm telling you. It will not get more than a few feet from its tree.

Smart skink. Smarter than me.

I wander. I roam.

I get way too far from my Safety.

I get busy with life. I get caught up in everything going on around me and I am enticed further and further away from my Safe Place. I take a few steps away and nothing happens. So, I take a few more steps away and nothing happens. So, I take a few more steps away and when I finally hear the enemy, I find myself too far away. I'm caught.

I also wander away because I believe the lie that there's something I need that's not close by my Refuge. There's something I think I need that He can't or won't provide. So, I go looking for it. I sneak further and further away looking for what I think I have to find. Thinking I am my own provider.

I believe the myth that says,"God helps those who help themselves."

And, then I'm caught.

Caught in the lies of the enemy. His deception. His chaos.

Caught in fear and anxiety.

Caught because I thought I could do it on my own.

Caught because I forgot I have an enemy.

Caught because I forgot I am as defenseless as the rock badger.

So, I'm not as smart as the skink ...

or the rock badger!

But, praise God!!

He fights for me.

He comes to my rescue and he delivers me out of the hands of the enemy.

But, every time I wander off, I grieve Him. Because I didn't trust Him enough to hang close. Because I didn't trust in His wisdom. Because I didn't obey when He told me to abide in Him. I didn't believe He would provide.

And, when He brings me back to safety...when He rescues me, so many times, He finds me with some pretty nasty wounds. Wounds that can leave some ugly scars. Scars that others see and make them wonder, "If your God is so good..if your God is so strong... if He really is who you say He is... why do you wander away?"

"Why don't you stay close to Him?"

Good question.

Like I said. I'm dumber than the skink.

Dumber than the rock badger.

My prayer is that God will give me the wisdom, the desire and the discipline to stay close by Him. To not wander off. And, until then...I just ask Him right now, to keep me on a short leash. To give me a holy yank when I start to wander.

Read the rest of Spurgeon's devotion in italics. My comments-because I always have a comment-are in ( )'s.

"Blessed be the name of the Lord, I have so done and found myself like David in the cave, safe from the cruelty of my enemy. I do not have to wonder how blessed it is to trust in the Lord, for long ago, when Satan and my sins pursued me, I fled to the cleft of the rock Christ Jesus, and in His wounded side I found a delightful resting place. (That's true. You were there for me. I have never called on You, without You being there.) My heart, run to Him afresh tonight, whatever your present grief may be. (Right now, there's a lot of grief.) Jesus feels for you; Jesus consoles you; Jesus will help you. (I know Lord. Help me to remember.) No king in his impregnable fortress is more secure than the rock badger in his cliff home. The master of ten thousand chariots is not one bit better protected than the little dweller in the mountain's cleft. In Jesus the weak are strong, and the defenseless safe; they could not be more strong if they were giants or more safe if they were in heaven. (That sounds so good to me. It sounds like HOPE!) Faith gives to men on earth the protection of God in heaven. (Think about that. Can you imagine being as safe here as we are going to be in heaven. That thought blows me a way.) They cannot need any more and need not wish for more. (WOW) The badgers cannot build a castle, but they avail themselves of what is there already. (I can't build a strong castle either. Nor provide the safety for those I love. I know. I've tried. Maybe if they see me staying close to You, they will join me. They will see You are a Good Home.) I cannot make myself a refuge, but Jesus has provided it. (Thank you.) His Father has given it, His Spirit has revealed it, and here again tonight I enter it and am safe from every foe." (Thank you again. Only you are My God. Only you are my Hiding Place. My strong Tower and Refuge.)

People say you shouldn't hide under a rock.

But, if the rock is Jesus, it's where I want to be.

No comments:

Post a Comment