Thursday, April 20, 2017

"Zebras... Stay Alert!"

1st Samuel 22.23 NKJV

“Stay with me; do not fear. For he who seeks my life seeks your life, but with me you shall be safe.”

I’m fascinated by the animal kingdom. I fulfilled a boyhood dream by earning an undergraduate degree from the University of Washington in Fisheries with a minor in biology. I worked in a pet store cleaning bird cages, commercial fished in Southeast Alaska, and found employment with a distributor of animal specimens for college dissection classes. I grew up collecting snakes, turtles, spiders, crayfish, bugs, butterflies, salamanders, lizards, hamsters, rabbits, gerbils, tropical fish, dogs, and cats. I even had a pet goat and a skunk! My poor mother.

I still love to learn about the animal kingdom and watch spellbound when TV wildlife shows graphically depict a predator stalking and capturing its prey. I am amazed by female lions who stealthily surround a band of grazing zebras before springing into action.

The results are predictable. The victim is always the one that strayed too far from the herd.

David offered protection to Abiathar after the brutal slaying of his father Ahimelech.

“Stay with me; do not fear. For he who seeks my life
seeks your life, but with me you shall be safe.”

Jesus offers you and me the same protection. Oddly, zebras appear to possess only a vague notion of their vulnerability. The prey seem genuinely surprised when a lion leaps from the grass. If I were a zebra living in lion country, I’d stay near the middle of the crowd at all times.

According to the New Testament writer, Peter, I am a zebra living in lion country. 

“Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil,
prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
1st Peter 5:8 NASU

There’s only to keep from being 'picked off' by the enemy of my soul. Remain near Jesus and His people. Close to the edge, I’m an easy target. I must be aware of my own vulnerability and stay far from the outer limits of barely permissible, unwise, or isolated activities. 

“Stay with me; do not fear. For he who seeks my life 
seeks your life, but with me you shall be safe.”

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