Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Write in the ADVENTURE genre (05/24/07)
TITLE: Small Sacrifice
By Frances Seymour
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Most ladies would have been frightened out of their wits given this same situation; however, you might say I have a long-standing track record with mice. Since I grew up in much older houses with cracks in the floorboards, gaps in the walls and limited screens over the windows, those country mice didn’t have to be rocket scientists to figure out easy access into our home. All in all, I have concluded that I am much bigger than they are so to me; they are simply harmless, hairy little pests that invade my territory on occasion.
This little guy was no exception to the rule as he peered out at me a second time while I was reading and meditating on Scripture this morning. I even wondered at one point if he was brave enough to dart across my living room floor, but not so. He only hunkered back down and out of sight once more. Now I figured this little guy was completely harmless and probably even a bit hungry as well. I decided to act on this thought by activating his search for early morning food.
In semi-darkness, I ventured into the kitchen, opened the refrigerator door and fished out a Ziploc bag containing leftover shredded sharp cheese. “What a delightful treat this would be for my hungry little intruder,” I thought as I reached inside the bag and pulled out the golden strands of cheese. I squished the cheese under the metal offering plate on the trap—pulled the spring-loaded metal bar back, attached the rod and voila, it was set!
Now it was time to go back to bed, so I carefully placed the mousetrap behind the entertainment center and turned off the lights. I crawled into the bed and before I even settled in, I heard the familiar pop of the mousetrap as it successfully captured its next victim within its taunt metal jaws.
Next morning as I studied the mouse frozen in the death grip of the trap, I couldn’t help but feel a bit sorry for the little guy. Then I went on into the kitchen and noticed that in my haste, I’d left the Ziploc bag of cheese out on the counter and it was wide open! Then, I realized just how much this mouse acted and reacted the way we do.
Instead of moving on and striving for bigger and better things, the mouse decided to settle for what was easy and convenient. Right before him lay a tray of instant gratification and he could not resist the temptation to go for it. This desire for instant gratification cost the mouse everything! Yet, if he’d only ventured out a few more feet, he would have discovered that much more satisfaction and contentment lay within his grasp. If only he’d been brave enough to seek the adventure.
Now, I have to admit that my discovery of the cheese on the counter completely changed my perception and I no longer felt quite as sorry for the little guy. You see, he had a choice—just as we often do. The mouse chose the easy way—instant satisfaction rather than to push forward and discover even greater opportunity.
We too, have a tendency to be like the mouse in this story and settle for mediocrity—instant gratification of worldly desires or habits, just getting by and continuing through life accepting easy access to the things of the world—perhaps even loosing something of value along the way. Or, we can choose tougher, more rigid decisions in life—ones that, in the long run will serve to build moral character and strength within.
We can choose to live life huddled in fear of venturing outside of its comforts or we can choose to raise the bar by pushing ourselves beyond the natural on to the supernatural. By choosing to be the best that we can be for Jesus today—seeking Him first, striving to please Him through obedience and making a firm commitment to grow Spiritually through discipline and discipleship, the foundation is laid for a great life. While this is certainly not the easy way out in a world filled with many distractions and attractions, let me assure you my friend, it is the best way!
Jesus said to the people, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t be stumbling through the darkness, because you have the light that leads to life.” John 8:12 (NLT)
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