Conviction and Squirrels
At church this year, in several of my Pastor's messages, he said we needed to use our gifts for God. So, I said okay I’d love to use my writing for God. The problem was that I didn’t want to write about what I didn’t know and understand, and I didn’t want to just throw something out there. So, I figured I’d just pray about it and tell God that I’d love to write for His Glory, but I needed to know that what I was writing was coming from Him and not me. I didn’t hear any response, but I didn’t expect God to say, “Well it’s about time, Tamara…now write this”. What I did do, however, is what I’ve learned we should do, and that’s to just keep praying about it and being open to hearing God. I prayed and I did bible study in the meantime, growing in my understanding of God’s Word.
Here’s where I’d like to tell you a little bit about me, because it might help you understand me, and this. I rescue things…which is why I have 5 dogs (I used to have 6), and 7 cats. I also rescue rodents, and insects, and birds from the cats if I can. I even have a bird I rescued in 2016 in NM. I’m a sucker for a cute furry face and yes I think mice and even rats are cute… to an extent. I stop the car and move turtles to the side of the road, I drive slower (sometimes) to make sure I don’t hit a deer, racoon, possum, turtle, or squirrel.
To me, squirrels are sweet, cute, fun little creatures. I remember feeding them peanuts as a kid at my grandparents’ house. They’re adorable. Maybe there are some of you that don’t see them that way and feel they are pests. I get that they can be. In a lot of ways though, they’re like people. Some are better behaved than others, some are shy, some bold, and some have a mischievous way about them. One thing about them that you can be sure of is that if they’re going to cross the road and a car is coming, they vacillate between going the way they are headed or going back the way they came from and they aren’t always quick to decide which way to go. Often, the decision is taken away from them by the car. I get very sad when I see a squirrel lying in the road. I get sad when I see possums, deer, racoons … anything lying in the road, but I speak specifically of squirrels because they are important to what I’m sharing with you today.
God speaks to each of his believers if we are listening. Sometimes it’s a quiet, gentle nudge of a thought, sometimes it’s a firm reprimand, and a lot of the times it’s like a good friend sitting next to you, making an observation. That’s how it was this time.
On my way to church last week, a squirrel almost darted out in front of me and at the last minute didn’t. Thank you, Lord. And then a little further up the road there was one laying in the road that had been hit. I saw it again when I went home, and again when I went back for Sunday night service…where another of our Pastors talked about conviction. And then on my way home I saw the dead squirrel in the road again and God said, “People are like squirrels in their conviction.”
You might be saying “HUH?, and some of you might already have an idea where God was leading me with this. God requires us to make a decision regarding HIM. We have free choice to make whatever decision we want, but we must decide. God wants us to choose Him and follow the path He has set out for us, or we can choose to continue down the road we’re on that guarantees a death much like the flattened squirrel in the road. Our time for decision making can be taken away from us in an instant; in other words, if you vacillate between making that decision, that decision will at some point, be taken away from you; by a car, or cancer perhaps – something. That was the other thing he shared with me, that we don’t know how long we have. It could be 10 years, a few weeks, or a day. I know the older we get, the more we know this, but when we’re younger we don’t necessarily see it.
Anyway, I hope that now, when you see a squirrel after this, you might see them differently, or at least be reminded of what I’ve shared. Hopefully you’ll slow down a bit and not be the person/car to make the final decision for that squirrel if it happens to run this way and that in front of you. More importantly, if you haven’t been convicted in your decision for Christ, perhaps you’ll see a squirrel and remember that time is running out.
Don’t be a squirrel. Don’t vacillate on the road of life between Jesus and the path you’re on now without Him. Just like for the squirrel, when that decision is taken away, there is no second chance.