Poor Tomasso, a cold, wet winter followed by a big temperature swing, almost always brings the same thing. Mange, biting lice, whatever you might call it in your neck of the woods, cattle (and other animals) get it. If you don’t treat it promptly, it’ll spread to others and can lead to weight loss and significant health problems.
It isn’t from a lack of care, as some may think. Instead, it’s a natural result of living in the elements found in this world. If you think about it, the same happens with us. If we immerse ourselves in this world, we’re going to get spiritual mange.Physical or spiritual, mange literally sucks the life out of you. #SpirituallyWeak #Faith #Mange Click To Tweet
To guard against mange (caused by mites) or a lice infestation (sucking or biting) affecting your herd, you must keep watch for its telltale signs. It’s not uncommon for cattle to scratch themselves on a tree trunk or barn pole, but when their hair falls out in spots, you know something ain’t right. A later sign is a loss of appetite as the cow becomes more preoccupied with itching than eating. I don’t fight this battle every year in late winter/early spring, but I’m always prepared for it. And when you see the first signs of an infestation, you treat it.
When caught early, treating mange in your livestock can be as simple as applying a topical treatment such as Permethrin™ or some pour-on. When applied effectively, you’ll see it working in less than a week. Their hair will start growing back, less itching, and more comfort.
What are some of the signs of a mangy faith? We begin to “go through the motions” in our faith walk instead of immersing ourselves in our faith. It starts out slowly. We’ll justify not going to church Sunday morning because we had a hard week, and we should rest more. The Bible tells us to rest, right? Other signs include being too busy to pray. God isn’t listening anyway. The fruit of the Spirit in our lives begins to soften and smell stronger. That’s decay you’re smelling, not growth.
And while you could spray yourself with Permethrin or Ivermectin (in case you’ve developed both a mangy and a wormy faith), they are not effective treatments for what you have. You’re infected with sin, my friend, and the most effective treatment in all cases is a liberal application of 1 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. (1 John 1:9 NKJV)
Like biting and sucking lice, or those nasty microscopic mites, sin gnaws at your soul and begins feasting on your faith. The longer you allow it to fester on the surface of your life, the more opportunity it has to cause damage. Seeking Christ’s forgiveness for your sin applies His grace and mercy to your soul and frees you from your mangy faith. The treatment already resides within you when you’re a true Believer.
I wish it were as simple as noticing a bald spot, but sin is craftier. It hides in your life, secretly causing damage until someone notices. I pray you have faithful Christian friends who aren’t afraid to apply the words of Proverbs 27:17 to your life. If you see it, say something! Do so in love, but saying nothing is not a loving act of a Christian brother or sister.
Please join me this Thursday evening at 9:00 Eastern as host Coach Mark Prasek and I take a trip Around the Cross-Dubya on PJNET TV. We discuss this week’s blog post, offer insight about the lessons learned, and enjoy the fellowship of friends in the live chat room.