The Dangerous Pursuit of Squirrels and Other Temptations

“Run, little squirrel, RUN!”

I wanted that bubonic-plague carrying ground squirrel and all his cute little friends out of my yard.

Their community of underground dens covers the hills around our house. One tiny bite with their sharp, little teeth could be life-threatening—to people or dogs.

Our two babies are small Boston Terriers who love chasing any rodent, especially squirrels—even though the only thing they’ve ever caught was a lizard.

Dangerous pursuits

As part of the human race, you probably chase “rodents” that are dangerous to your mental, emotional, physical or spiritual health.

(Please say, “yes.” I don’t want to be alone in this.)

I know, I know… whatever kind of “rodent” it is, it’s probably cute and seems harmless, and it’s small—not a big thing to worry about.

Kinda like a squirrel, right?

Yet, we still enjoy the dangerous pursuit of these rodents:

  • unsafe people
  • unhealthy food
  • gossip
  • addictions
  • co-dependency
  • worry
  • family or work drama
  • avoiding difficult conversations
  • laziness
  • sugar binges (OK, guilty here.)
  • complacency
  • critical attitudes

I’ve run into a lot of women in their 50s and older who still embrace their favorite rodent.

That really bugs me and I’m sure it does you too. These people aren’t fun to be around. And it sure doesn’t wear well with their legacy of faith.

As we age, the old chase becomes more ingrained in our habits if we haven’t gotten rid of the rodent or stopped the pursuit.

How do we stop a dangerous pursuit?

My husband is on a mission to get rid of the squirrels that are such a temptation to our dogs.

So far his small-game hunter-tactics aren’t working.

(He was raised in the city, so I give him a lot of grace. One time he tried to chase a skunk off our back porch by throwing a shoe at it. THAT didn’t go well.)

So if getting rid of the temptation doesn’t work, what is he to do? Change the DNA of our Boston Terriers who were bred to chase small rodents?

Not gonna happen. Boston Terrier DNA is what it is.

But not so with our DNA!

You see, Jesus inserted a code of His grace DNA into each of us when we became part of His family.

Scientists may not be able to identify this code, but it’s there.

It supersedes our old sin nature DNA and gives us the power to STOP our chase of whatever temptation we’re pursuing.

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age” (Titus 2:11-12 NIV, italics mine).

Did you get that? GRACE teaches us to say “NO!”

And that grace is hidden in YOU… waiting to be embraced so all the chasing of dangerous rodents in your life can STOP.

TRY THIS:

  • Identify your dangerous rodent
  • Imagine yourself embracing Jesus and the grace He brought into your life
  • Ask Him to use His grace to teach you (not condemn you) in how to say “NO” to the temptation of chasing that rodent
  • Follow whatever instructions Grace gives you

When God’s grace is your teacher, you’ll find instructions, some homework, and a few tests.

None of it will have a hint of condemnation with it, only love and grace in HOW to stand firm and communicate boundaries to yourself and others.

You can do this! I know you can.

Your soul will appreciate the resulting rest and refreshing that stopping the chase brings.

If you’d like to read more alone these lines, check out How to Avoid Crabby Old Lady Stuff.

Hugs,

Susan

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