The Vermins in our Life! Mountain View Series, Part 18


A wold walking on the road at Algonquin Provincial Park

Man can be deadly. In the past, man decided that wolves were vermin. After all, these detestable creatures went after our livestock! That's unheard of! They had to be eliminated!

Interestingly enough, when Algonquin Provincial Park was founded in 1893, protection was given to all animals except one: The wolf! Isn't that sad? The park rangers would set snares everywhere to catch wolves, and every year, fifty to sixty wolves were exterminated.

Then someone higher up in the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources decided to research more about wolves. He found out that wolves were part of the ecosystem and without them, the ecosystem may be imbalanced. Wolves were important after all!

Sadly, this research came a bit too late to save the wolves from extermination in most parts of the world, but not in Algonquin Provincial Park.

But then man (Which includes women as well!) Can be self-destructive as well: "Let's not pretend this is easier than it really is. If you want to live a morally pure life, here's what you have to do: You have to blind your right eye the moment you catch it in a lustful leer. You have to choose to live one-eyed or else be dumped on a moral trash pile. And you have to chop off your right hand the moment you notice it raised threateningly. Better a bloody stump than your entire being discarded for good in the dump." (Matt 5:29-30, MSG)

Sin is deadly. Not honoring our Heavenly Father is deadly. Thinking solely about ourselves is deadly. Who among us would like to end up being "dumped on a moral trash pile"? Not me! I hunger for integrity! Imagine not feeling God's presence within us any longer. That would be way worse than death itself!

Those leery looks, those vehement words we speak forth from our mouths, the unforgiveness that lingers within us, these things will not lead us to bliss, but to our self-imposed destruction.

At all cost we should do anything in our power to avoid such a catastrophe. Just like we tried to destroy the wolf but we shouldn't have, we shouldn't destroy ourselves. And for what? Lust? Murder? Selfishness? Unforgiveness that eats us live? Is it really worth it? Once we dabble into the forbidden, it's quite hard to get out of the resulting addiction. Yes, sin is addictive. If we don't forgive someone for example, we will tend to not forgive other people as well. We cannot free ourselves without help.

It's only possible when we decide to come running to our Heavenly Father who will figuratively chop off these habits done by our looks, arms and thoughts. We need our Heavenly Father's help to experience victory. Not through our own efforts, but through the very One who willingly died on a lonely cross so that we could experience victory. When He was risen, He became our assurance that we will be victorious: "But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." (1Cor 15:57, NIV2)

We can linger in our destructive mindsets and never feel peace, which will eventually lead to self-destruction, or we can bask in victory thanks to the Risen One. Good News, the Risen One has promised: "Whoever comes to me I will never drive away." (John 6:37b, NIV2) Your victory is guaranteed!

My son and I had the privilege to see a wolf walking on the road of Algonquin Provincial Park. We stopped our car, took our cameras, and while he walked peacefully near our car, we were able to take photos of this beautiful creature.

That same evening a man came into the men's washroom. I was brushing my teeth. He was boasting that he had seen a bear with her cub. "Wow!" I said. "That must have been the highlight of your day!" He agreed. Then I told him about the wolf that we had seen. He told me: "I'd rather see a wolf than a bear!"

Those wolves that were labelled vermin are now a privileged sight to see. The same will happen when our Father gives us victory. When we are free, many will see it as a privilege to meet us in person to shake out hands!

Rob Chaffart

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