This post was originally posted on Spinning Memories, Knitting Love, and has be replaced here.
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Anoles aren't very smart. At least in our eyes. When my boys were home and our nephew lived with us, we had 3 anoles, one for each boy. These cute little green lizards were brown sometimes. They lived in an aquarium with stones on the bottom, a long stick inside and a rock or two to hide under and behind. That was their world.
I, more often than not, fed and watered them, mainly because I took pleasure in looking after them. Sometimes when the house was empty and quiet, I would sit near the cage and watch them interact with one another or climb around their stick or just close their eyes to rest. It was fun to watch these little creatures. I would buy or catch bugs for them to eat, dropping them down into their enclosure. And I would "make rain on them" by spritzing water into their realm so they could drink the droplets. I even hooked up a lamp nearby to give them "sunlight" and warmth. It was usually on for them during the day, especially dreary days.
But with all that I did for them, they didn't realize that this great big giant creature that comes around cares for their well-being. They didn't recognize my help and they usually ran and hide from me. When I would raise the lid to drop bugs in, they would run from my hands.
My hands had never done anything to cause them not to trust me. But the act of my hands giving them food or giving them water made them run and hide. They only partook after I was gone - they did not see my hands connected with the provision. And they did not realize that the warm lamp light that they enjoyed so much, even that was provided by my hand. Such a small view they had!
We are much like that. We have a "great big" creator who takes pleasure in us and who delights in providing all that we need for life and holiness (II Peter 1:3). But we don't always see His provision and we run in the opposite direction - anywhere we can go to be "free" to make our own way, we think. We are independent and are so often afraid to trust the the One who provides for us. We prefer to trust ourselves. I am guilty, too.
Now, one of the these anoles, the smallest one seemed to become accustomed to my help. Sometimes, just sometimes, when I would squirt him with a water mist, instead of flinching or running, he would stick out his tongue and drink off the glass as I squirted. It was delightful and I felt that, in some small way, he had learned to trust that what I was doing was for his good.
But one day he managed to escape his safe enclosure. He "left my care." He got free to a world in which he had no idea how to survive. No idea of the pain he was causing himself. It was winter so there were no bugs for him to catch and eat. No water anywhere that he could get to. I could do NOTHING for him. His choice to run from my care changed his life forever.
One day a few weeks later I was standing near a winter sun beam on the floor and here came my little friend. He was being drawn to the warmth of the sun. He had lost a lot of weight and maybe because of the accompanying weakness, he let me pick him up and put him back where I could care for him once again. And let me tell you, he drank and drank and drank.
It soon became clear that even though he had come back to a place of letting me care for him, his "choice" weakened him and he was never as strong again. We fed him and he gained some weight and some strength. But he was never as good as before. Not too long after that, he shriveled up and died.
Oh, that we, that you and I would choose always to stay in that place of child-like faith where God can tend to all our needs, physical, emotional, spiritual - all of them. That place of faith where we leave Him the freest to look after us. We make choices all the time, every day, that either keeps us in there or takes us from it, step-by-step.
I'm not so afraid to trust Him, but I forget to trust Him. In the cares and duties of life I forget to look to Him, to lean on Him for my guidance, my strength and my help. I act like I can figure things out better than He can. But, like the little anole that I thought was so dumb, I see my little world through my little perspective. I walk away from the one Source of life itself. He sees the entire picture and His ways are so much higher than mine. Sometimes, my skull is just so thick.
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But I am very thankful that He is patient and loving and has never turned His back on me. I am thankful for the fact that He takes us back, meets us where we are and can give us second chances, if we let him.