11 years ago, my husband and I stumbled upon a home for sale with a quaint porch with a fireplace. I imagined sipping my coffee on the porch, family dinners, s’mores, and fires at dusk. I was sold! What I didn’t anticipate were all of the pests that would live in the space year round: tiny bugs, spiders, chipmunks, and perhaps a rodent or two (eek!).
After my husband did a thorough porch cleaning that Spring, I found myself Googling Pest Control devices and shopping gadgets online. I found several devices which promised cruelty-free pest removal. One device promised to drive out the pests from where they are hiding. That one seemed like a winner! I wanted the pests to stop hiding!
Does God try doing this in your life? Is He searching nooks and crannies trying to get rid of something distracting you from building a better relationship with Him?
When the pest management device I ordered arrived on our doorstep…it was not what I was expecting. Clearly some of the translation on the box…was lost in the translation. After a good laugh, my husband declared it was a scam similar to snake oil. Yep. It was a quick fix for an underlying pest problem. I was going to try it anyway.
Have you ever tried a quick fix in your life; instead of knocking first on God’s door?
Then I thought…Wow! If only there was a device to help remove pests in my personal life. This time instead of Google, I went to the Bible. I searched the God- breathed pages for advice on how to deal with a few “pests” in my life: difficult relationships, feelings of anger and jealousy, and lies Satan whispers to create anxiety.
Pests can be in the form of people. You may have a relationship with a friend or family member that needs examining because it is tearing you away from your walk with Jesus. Have you tried and failed to help the person to see the way to eternal life? Or, are you too scared it will drive the person away completely like the pest control device claimed? Examine your motive in the relationship and pray for the person. Don’t forget to pray for yourself. You do not want to stumble into any snares.
Pests can be in the form of time wasters which could produce feelings of anger and jealousy. We all know social media has brought us closer to each other. It is fun to see what adventures family and friends near and far are enjoying. We can even provide Christ-centered encouragement when someone we know is having a trial. The caution here is spending the same amount of time you are scrolling, as you spend time building your relationship with Christ. I have a favorite encouraging podcast I listen to called the Thankful Homemaker. In a podcast discussing self-discipline, she suggests using social media as a “treat” of sorts after your work is done. The same podcast on self-discipline reminds us that our care of family and homes are gifts, and even mundane tasks can edify God. What time wasters are keeping you from spending daily time reading and reflecting on God’s word?
Pests can be in the form of fears and anxiety. A few years ago, I received advice when I was dealing with my own struggle with these issues. A wonderful Christian woman counseled me to memorize a few Bible verses for when your thoughts get derailed. I thought my days of memorizing Bible verses ended with confirmation class. Not so! Bible verses are your secret weapon in slaying Satan’s whispers of lies in your life. “Put off” the negative thoughts troubling you, and “put on” Bible verses reminding you of our loving Father working out everything for good. If you don’t know where to start, look to the Psalms. The verses are timeless and encouraging. If your anxiety or depression is severe, please do not hesitate to seek out professional help and medication. Treat it as you would any other illness that God provides care for!
Pests are hard to get rid of and keep coming back! Let the Bible be your new “Pest Removal” device. It’s powerful and effective!