With all the challenges our nation and world is facing, I decided that today I wanted to make someone smile. Here’s my attempt. There’s been so much rhetoric, hatred, self-loathing, and sincere insincerity of late I wanted us to just take a break from it for just a few minutes. Moving hay from the field to the barn, a family of squirrels on my dusty country road amused me. Mom and dad were busy trying to harvest for winter, while their kids (not sure what you call juvenile squirrels) just wanted to play tag and chase each other in and out of the trees that line the roadside. A smile appeared as I remembered this story.
There were four churches and a synagogue in a small town: Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist, Catholic, and a Jewish synagogue. Each church and the synagogue had a problem with squirrels.
The Presbyterian Church called a meeting to decide what to do about their squirrels. After much prayer and consideration they determined the squirrels were predestined to be there and they shouldn’t interfere with God’s divine will.
At the Baptist Church, the squirrels had taken an interest in the baptistery. The deacons met and decided to put a water slide on the baptistery and let the squirrels drown themselves. The squirrels liked the slide and, unfortunately, knew instinctively how to swim so twice as many squirrels showed up the following week.
The Methodist Church decided that they could not harm any of God’s creatures. So, they humanely trapped their squirrels and set them free near the Baptist Church. Two weeks later the squirrels were back when the Baptists took down the water slide.
But the Catholic Church came up with a very creative strategy. They baptized all the squirrels and consecrated them as members of the church. Now they only see them on Christmas and Easter.
Not much was heard from the Jewish synagogue, but it’s rumored they took one squirrel and circumcised him; and they haven’t seen a squirrel on their property since.
Now that you’ve had a good laugh (I hope), let’s look at the real problem with squirrels. How many times have we seen squirrels flattened on our streets and roads? Ever wonder why you find more squirrels in that condition than any other animal? I believe it’s because they’re the most timid and indecisive creatures roaming this earth; and I have to wonder if God made them that way for a reason.
Think about the last time you saw a squirrel attempting to cross the road. They stand on one side; then start across boldly. Then they hesitate and stop; then they start heading back from where they came. Next, they change their minds and start crossing again; then they stop again. In the meantime, you keep driving straight towards them at 35 miles per hour.
Second Timothy 1:7 (NKJV) reads; “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” Perhaps Paul wanted to share with young Timothy that sometimes it seems Christians become squirrel-like in their walk with the Lord. Their thoughts are sincere, but their actions are timid. With unsettled thoughts, they cannot trust the urgings to move forward that comes from within their very souls. He encourages Timothy to be bold in his faith.How sqiurrel-like has your walk in faith become? Click To Tweet
In these troubling times, how many of us seem to have one foot in the Lord’s house and one foot in the world? We want to be good, upright Christians, but we succumb to the sensationalized news, partisan politics, and divisive worldly things that draw us into their state of mind. How often do we choose to be politically correct or culturally sensitive in our speech rather than speaking the truth of God’s word with conviction, courage, and love? Our intent may be to show a softer side than the fast-becoming prevalent far left and far right extremist views that divides us. The result is what James refers to as double-minded; “he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:8, NKJV)
I believe we are living in the end times as described throughout the Bible. More and more signs point to the increasing frequency and severity of these birthing pains (Matthew 24). Like squirrels, sometimes we timidly let sin just keep rolling straight towards us; and we become too paralyzed by our own indecisiveness to get out of its way—ending up “flattened”. The time has come for us to search our hearts and decide whose kingdom we shall serve. I know it’s difficult to always apply the spiritual fruit of self-control, as it seems we’re always at war against our human spirit. We won’t always do or say the right thing. Yet, we should always seek that goal. God sees our hearts and rewards our efforts to live out our faith.
56 thoughts on “The Trouble with Squirrels”
I agree that we are living in the end times as described in the Bible. May we follow the Holy Spirit’s leading and shine brightly for Christ in our words and actions.
Amen Ms. Emily. As we cannot know the day or hour, we need to make sure we keep our lamps filled and be ready for the upward call of Christ my friend. Will see you there! Thank you so much for commenting.
Hilarious! And true!
I’m so glad you enjoyed Ms. Nancy; on all counts. We all need to take a “smile break” don’t we ma’am? We can’t change this world, but we can change our little part of it can’t we ma’am. All we need is Christ.
J.D., thanks for the laugh! Love the denominational tactics for squirrels. Ha ha! I don’t want to have one foot in the Lord’s house and one foot in the world. Help us Lord, firmly stand on the solid Rock.
I’m with you there Ms. Karen. We must plant our feet firmly on the solid foundation of faith God’s word gives us. Well said ma’am. So happy you found a smile ma’am; the world brightens when you do. God’s blessings.
I needed to smile today, J.D.! Thank you! I have several varieties of squirrels and chipmunks that entertain me in the gardens and tree just outside my kitchen window.
But you got serious and challenged me to be a better follower of Jesus. It’s tempting and comfortable to go along with the politically correct or culturally sensitive conversation instead of speaking God’s truth. These are confusing times and I don’t know where we begin to fix our problems except in prayer. Help me, Lord, to apply your truth to the world’s situation and to introduce it into conversations about these troubling times. May we stay Christ-centered as we address our country’s problems.
I’m so pleased I could bring you smile Ms. Cathy. We all need to take a moment and remember that “in Christ” it’s all going to be okay. We can’t change the world, but we can change ourselves and show more of God’s love in our lives. Who knows, we might change others. I’m afraid this world will continue to spiral out of control; God’s word tells us it will. That doesn’t mean we have to be participants though. For me, humor is one way to rise above the worry and fear. God’s blessings sweet friend.
Yep, I needed that laugh today. Thanks, J.D. as always you have tethered scripture to the everyday.
You are too kind Ms. Jeanne. Thank you so much for adding to our conversation ma’am.
The squirrel story made me laugh, indeed, J. D., and goodness knows, I needed it! But on the flip side, we can be so timid and hesitant in our faith at times. I know my heart longs to do what God wants me to do, but I find myself unwilling to speak out. Maybe, I need to do lots more praying in this area. And just an aside, I have a soft spot in my heart for squirrels as one has a starring role in my book series which you can check out here: http://www.gladetrilogy.wix.com/theglade
Yes ma’am. The man who served as my paternal grandfather (Ermal “Shorty” Wininger) was a wonderful blessing in my early life. He taught me to be a human in a world full of “monsters.” In his later years, he found a baby squirrel that had fallen out of a tree near his winter home in Lakeland, FL. An avid squirrel and rabbit hunter his entire life, he carried it inside, nursed it back to good health, and they were inseparable friends for many years. I recall how he tied yarn to “Hinky Dink” to make a leash and that little squirrel would get inside of papaw’s shirt and make laps. I loved listening to my grandfather giggle and laugh through many ministrations. Then “Hinky Dink” would crawl back into the shirt pocket of his flannel shirt and papaw would give him a peanut. Thank you for reminding me of this delightful thought and this loving man.
Preach it, J.D.! We need to be bold in our faith, not double-minded. I don’t think most understand what double-minded means.
Great squirrel story…I hate seeing them flattened, though.
Me too Ms. Stephanie, but even in the “flattening” there’s a lesson about being double-minded isn’t there ma’am. I bet you never look at a “flattened” squirrel again without thinking about this lesson though. 🙂 Sorry. Not really. 🙂 God’s blessings dear friend.
JD – love this – and so good to hear from you! We have a huge squirrel “problem” in our area (we live in a heavily wooded neighborhood) and so I can relate to your analogy perfectly. Squirrel indecision – hah! Yes, my faith is like that at times.
Same here Ms. Denise. I’ve missed you of late my friend. Praying all is okay. And yes, I think we all display squirrel-like indecision in our lives sometimes. God’s blessings young lady.
Great story & message, Mr. Wininger. By the way, a baby squirrel is a kit.
Thanks Mr. Linzey. Not sure I’ll ever make it to Jeopardy, but if I do, I sure hope I remember “kit.” 🙂 Have a blessed day “Chaps”; praying you and Ms. Linda are getting settled in and sorted out sir.
Mission accomplished! **smile**
Good word, JD – thank you!
Ahhh… to see you smile my friend. The clouds roll away, the sky brightens, and heaven sings. 😀 I’m so glad you enjoyed ma’am. God’s blessings.
Don’t even get my husband started on the problem with squirrels…Thanks for the laugh and the message! Great timing too!
I’m so very pleased you enjoyed Ms. Sylvia. As I do so many of your posts ma’am. God’s blessings. As for the squirrels. I’ll take them over the barn swallows right now. What a mess! 😀
Squirrel. Great truths in your article. Hopefully, we won’t end up flattened. Thanfully (and scary), God sees our hearts. Thanks.
Thank you Mr. Jimmie. So glad you enjoyed sir. I too am thankful that God judges my heart and not my actions only. God’s blessings sir. You stay safe out there in the DFW area when you venture out my friend.
Thanks for underlining the thoughts given to me during devotions this morning. One word, “SMILE “.
Smiling is medicinal!! Thanks again, Cuz, for reminding of the practical side of God’s wonderful world! Lessons everywhere!!
Hey “Cousin!” 🙂 I’m so very pleased I could bring a smile ma’am. We sure need more reasons to these days don’t we? God’s blessings my sweet friend.
Thanks. You’re my favorite cattleman, w/such great inspirational posts (the only one I know!). (:
Ms. Gail. You and hubby are just gonna have to come visit the Cross-Dubya next time you’re in TX ma’am. I’ll introduce you to some friends of mine who are much better cattle people than me. God’s blessings sweet lady.
I needed something light today so thank you. What a perfect analogy as well. I have been the cause of quite a few of those little guys meeting their Maker sooner than maybe they’d planned. While it was light-hearted there was much good truth here as always.
Thank you Ms. Ann. Sometimes we need to entertain as much as we need to educate. I thought this week needed a smile to be inserted. I’m thinking it worked. 🙂 Be well, stay blessed, and continue doing good dear friend.
Great devotion, J.D. I love your down to earth writing which combines stories with gems from the word of God and great insight!
Awww… now that’s just about the sweetest thing someone could say Ms. Evelyn. Thank you so much for brightening my day ma’am. I’m both honored and humbled by your gracious words ma’am.
Squirrels can cause lots of trouble. When I was a young girl, a squirrel found it’s way down our chimney and into the living room. My Daddy chased that squirrel as it jumped from one window drapery to the next. Finally, Daddy got it to head out the front door. I think we act like squirrels sometimes, jumping all over the place. Thank you for giving me the giggles today.
OMGoodness. I couldn’t help but laugh as I replayed the scene of your dad chasing the squirrel, you girls (you and your mom at least) screaming at him. And that poor squirrel. He must’ve thought he’d entered the Twilight Zone. I think Licky the Lizard may have just found a companion for his next book. 🙂 God’s blessings; and thank you so much for returning the giggles ma’am.
I love everything about thus post. I got a good laugh at your joke and then you described that squirrel crossing the highway so well it made me laugh again. Then you concluded with a punch that gave me something to think about!
How kind. Thank you Ms. Candyce. I’m so glad you enjoyed ma’am.
Excellent analogies and biblical truths ! And a good chuckle. Thank you Mr Jim! You made my day … again!
It’s so very good to hear from you Ms. Nicole. Am glad you enjoyed ma’am. I can just see your eyes twinkling as you chuckled as you read. Then I watched your head bow as you thought about how God might reveal His truths in your heart also my dear friend. I thank God for you, Mr. Tory, and your entire family. God’s blessings ma’am.
Thanks for the smile and the lesson this morning, JD. On occasion we should all take a few minutes and reflect on our spiritual decisiveness.
We surely do Mr. Monty. Thank you so much for adding to our conversation sir.
What a great post, J.D. I laughed out loud and thoroughly enjoyed doing so. But what succinct application. God always has a lesson for us to learn during difficult times and one of the lessons I’m convinced He is teaching me during these days of grief recovery is to “Be still and know that He is God.” Like those squirrels I’ve always been on the move. But I’m learning to quiet my heart, my mind and my body…even in the middle of this chaos…and sit still before Him…in the Word, It’s amazing I can hear and see the leading of His Spirit. But it’s two steps forward and one step back…old habits die hard. It takes a concentrated effort. But after hearing His voice and seeing Him act produces a longing to hear Him again and again. And like you, I believe we’re going to see Jesus…face to face…very soon. “Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”
To know that I brought you a smile today is a wonderful gift indeed Ms. DiAne. Thank you so much for your kind comments ma’am. I too am learning many lessons during these trying times. I’m also seeing things revealed to me through my actions that show me just how far I have to go in my journey of faith. I’m so blessed to be able to travel on this path with wonderful folks like you ma’am. God’s blessings.
Well, you definitely brought a smile to my face plus a few giggles regarding those silly Baptists (for which I am one) and Methodists. Thing is, I feel sorry for those indecisive critters. They could be saved if they would just make the decision!
A wonderful lesson indeed right there my Baptist sister. 🙂 Isn’t it wonderful that we can laugh at ourselves, while at the same time find am important lesson about our faith? God’s blessings ma’am.
Thanks for the smile! And may we speak the truth in love and not bow to a false substitute for love.
Oh how I love this thought Ms. Debbie! “Let is not bow to a false substitute for love.” What an important reminder ma’am of Romans 12:2.
Thanks for making me smile and even chuckle. I’ve seen squirrels do exactly as you described in the road. Sounds like your Jewish friends inherited some of Solomon’s wisdom.
As for myself, as a young adult I experienced living with one foot in the Kingdom and one foot I the world. You’re right. That’s not a comfortable place in which to be. I didn’t realize I was acting so much like a squirrel.
Another great analogy, my friend. God bless!
Thank you Ms. Connie. I think we all have some “squirrel” in us at some point in our lives. Sadly, there are times when I still think I do. 🙂 I’m so very glad you enjoyed and was able to reflect my friend. God’s blessings.
Although I tend to be a on the timid side, my desire has been to speak the truth of God’s Word with conviction, courage, and love as you stated. God has grown me over the past forty-six years since accepting Him as my Lord, and an increased boldness has been the result. However, there’s room for much more!
Thank you Ms. LuAnn. I am honored to be able to stand beside you and your dear husband and claim God’s sovereignty and glory to the world ma’am. God’s blessings my friend.
I needed a laugh today, thanks JD! Also very good points. When I get overwhelmed by everything that is happening in the world, I remember that this world is not my home. Followers of Jesus should glance upon this world with a completely different perspective. When my eyes are on Jesus, there is peace in my heart.
Indeed Ms. Josie. This world is not our home my friend. Holding onto this truth is the only way I’m able to restore peace in my life when I see all that is happening around us. I pray folks around the world are getting right with God; there’s not much time left. God’s blessings sweet lady.
Wow… 3 or 4 admonitions in a row from different places have touched my heart about halting between two kingdoms, to ones to serve, and being shallow. When I read and meditated, I will definitely think of flattened squirrels now!
On a different track, a young 3rd grade writing student of mine once wrote a complete and very well planned story for an assignment. It was about Timmy, the Squirrel.
Thank for your kind words Ms. Jackie. I bet the Timmy, the Squirrel story has a much better ending than mine. I’m so pleased you were able to take away some good things from it ma’am. God’s blessings to you and Mr. Lynn.
This devotional reminds me of a song called “Voice of Truth” by Casting Crowns. Several of the lyrics of the song are as follows:
Oh, what I would do to have the kind of faith it takes to climb out of this boat I’m in and onto the crashing waves. To step out of my comfort zone into the realm of the unknown, where Jesus is, and He’s holding out his hand.
I once gave a sermon entitled, “It’s time to get out of the boat” and used Matthew 14:22-33 as the background.
Great devotional as I was inspired by it, thank you for sharing it. Have a blessed day.
That’s a great song sir. It is indeed time to get away from the shore and demonstrate the strength of our faith my friend. Thank you so much for adding to our conversation. 🙂