Sometimes in our desire to ward off the enemy we can be overzealous to fight what we think might harm us, draining our reserves of energy, or simply letting down our guard. We don't see the danger before us though it is right in front of our eyes. We find ourselves snared by the fiery darts of the enemy when if we stayed within the limits God gave us, we would not have been hurt.
The other day, Malka, our huge Saint Bernard came nuzzling up against my skirt. I glanced down, pulled back, and gasped as I glanced down at her nose and mouth!!!!! She was COVERED in QUILLS!!!!!!!! Her face looked like the porcupine she had encountered!! They had pierced her tongue as well...the poor dog!!
I had always wanted to see a porcupine. Alive not dead!! We often see one crumpled up along the side of our winding country roads. I suppose our dog wanted to see one dead too but found that this little predator was one she would rather have evaded!!
"He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life:
but he that openeth wide his lips shall have destruction."
A porcupine is a docile little nocturnal rodent that roams at night hunting for leaves, herbs, twigs (fancy eating a twig!!), and green plants such as skunk cabbage. They might push their strong tail into their 'enemy' and release their quills; but never project them into the predator. That is a myth!!
I am learning to look at animals and see what God teaches us through their character, or the situations we encounter with animals. Our dog is always overzealous!! She never thinks before acting!! Been there, done that!! How 'bout you?!
How many times have you said something to your child, not realizing how they will perceive what you are saying?? Your words and motives are taken in a way you never intended. How we need the love and mercy of the Lord in these situations.
Words!! Words can tumble out of our mouth faster than we can think to say them. Did you ever listen to yourself talking with a friend and wonder how you thought to say those things so quickly?? How important it is to 'give our tongue to the Lord' as He is able to control what we say when we might not.
In guarding our family from the evils prevalent in our society, I have been known to over-guard our home. It is good to remove evil and those items that resemble evil. BUT, do you remove the chainsaw because you might injure yourself, instead of using it correctly to cut wood to heat your home during the winter?!
The porcupine is not aggressive towards other animals or people. It has no natural enemies. It is docile. If an animal comes looking for trouble, trying to take the porcupine in its mouth, it will get a mouth full of quills!!
If I gossip with other ladies, or say sharp things to my children, or my words are misunderstood, if I meddle in someone else's business, I will get a mouth full of quills!!
Instead, I can choose to edify those same women, have kindness on my lips towards my children, with a quiet spirit clarify my misunderstood words, give a hand to others instead of meddling, blessing those around me.
"Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles."
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