Proverbs 29:6 An evil man is snared by his own sin, but a righteous one can sing and be glad. (NIV)
As we approached the trap the snared animal bared his teeth and growled. I could only imagine what he would do to us if he were free.
My friend trapped during the winter. He was after fox and raccoon pelts and had some neighbors who ate ďcoon.Ē I helped him run traps one year and discovered this an interesting adventure. All the trapped animals when approached would put on their ferocious faces but one was more ravaging than the rest-the opossum. Even though we would have gladly released him, we couldn't because he would not let us near him.
Trapped animals have two common characteristics: they are confined and angry. More disturbing is that I frequently act the same way they do. The Constitution may give me the right of free speech, and I can travel anywhere I want within limits, but Iím often restrained.
I pledge to love my enemies but step in the trap of revenge when treated unfairly. When the tailrider finally passes I'm tempted to tail ride in return. An eye for an eye and a bumper for a bumper. A vow to avoid gossip is discarded when a juicy piece of information is shared and I get a chance to do the same. And who can forget the difficult person at work or church. My valiant attempt to get along is often ambushed by unkind thoughts.
Not only am I confined but I'm angry-angry that I keep failing in spite of my best efforts to succeed. That's when I remember what leads to my failures. I am trying with my strength instead of God's, and that always leads to acting in snared ways. When I depend on me sin wins, but when I rely on God for the right word, attitude or action I experience freedom.
Though we may feel angry when we fail God, he never rejects us for our occasional stumbles. He's always willing to give another chance and show us how to live free from the snare.
Prayer: Father, when we're tempted to act in snared ways liberate us to act in ways that honor You. www.morningliteministry.com
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