Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Shepastor: “Lessons From the Badger…”

Proverbs 30:24-28
The Message (MSG)

Four Small Wonders
24-28 There are four small creatures,
wisest of the wise they are—
ants—frail as they are,
get plenty of food in for the winter;
marmots (badgers)—vulnerable as they are,
manage to arrange for rock-solid homes;
locusts—leaderless insects,
yet they strip the field like an army regiment;
lizards—easy enough to catch,
but they sneak past vigilant palace guards.

This is our second, “lesson” in our series about ants, badgers and lizards. Today’s focus is upon the badger. I confess: I know little or nothing about badgers. I’ve never even seen one! However, I was intrigued with the proverbial writer’s observation about the badger’s wisdom.

Verse 26 of Proverbs Chapter 30 in the Revised Standard Version is stated in this way…

26 the badgers are a people without power,
yet they make their homes in the rocks;
The Message Bible states it like this…

26 marmots (badgers)—vulnerable as they are,
manage to arrange for rock-solid homes;

The Bible likens badgers to “vulnerable people without power.” Bodily, badgers have short legs, are low to the ground and have to dig deep for their food. God, however, has given them extremely strong jaws and the ability to dig deep, enabling them to dig and build homes even in and among rocks.

Jesus once admonished that the “wise” are like those who build their homes on a rock… (Matthew 7: 24-25, NRSV)

24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. 25 The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on rock.

Despite the badger’s “vulnerabilities” and “powerlessness,” God gave it the wisdom and strength to build its home in and among rocks. They have to dig deep. Jesus declared that if we listen to and obey His words, we, like the badger will be wise and will be able to stand the tests, the storms, the adversities, the struggles of life.

There are times when life propels us into circumstances that produce feelings of powerlessness and vulnerability – things over which we have no particular control…injustices, prejudice, sexism, disease, job loss, wayward children, death, generational/familial dysfunction, etc. Yet God’s Word gives us hope…if we choose wisdom, we too can “build our houses among the rocks,” but we have to dig deep. Jesus is the rock. The Word of God, when received, believed, followed and applied moves us from a position of vulnerability and powerlessness to becoming more than conquerors…but we must determine to dig deep.

No matter what our situation or circumstance, the Word of God can teach us how to prevail…but we have to dig deep. When we embrace the promises of God, they raise us above any power or principality that seeks to keep us down and or destroy us…but we must dig deep! God has also given, not only biblical “faith hero’s and shero’s,” but modern day “rocks” that have risen above trials, struggles and impossibilities – triumphing over satan’s rage…those women and men who chose to dig deep, refusing to allow that which was without to nullify that which was within.

Choose to build your “home” among “the rocks.” Build your hopes, dreams, prayers and aspiration upon Jesus and His Word. Build your house among those “rocks” that have done and are doing the same. Avoid the “Elijah” syndrome – you are not alone… you are not the only one going through…you are not the only one who has “haters!” Run to the rock, stand upon the rock, build your home among the rocks – consider the badger and be wise!

Next week we’ll consider the wisdom of the lizard!

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Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

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