“We must catch the little foxes that destroy the vineyards.”
Song of Songs 2:15
Last night I had a dream and the message stayed with me all day. There where a group of people on the hunt catching foxes. They were armed with all the equipment they needed. Some were successful in catching and removing them. But others, only half participating, were aware of their presence but did not take action to remove them completely. There was a sense this wasn't sufficient.
I was doing a bit of research and yes, foxes hunt small rodents and get into chicken coops, but it turns out they also have a thing for vineyards. Once in, their digging can destroy years of effort, causing the vines to fail to fruit and if left unchecked can ruin the whole harvest. In Song of Songs:
“We must catch the little foxes that destroy the vineyards.” Song of Songs 2:15
Little things left unchecked can cause big damage. The Lord wants us to be people who take action over our own lives and live with intentionality and direction.
I've always had a thing about foxes... And not in a good way. When I was young I would constantly call my Dad into my room in the middle of the night because I was terrified there was a fox pacing outside my window. This fear although childish and unfounded, has Biblical symbolism. The fox is represented as cunning, hidden and deceitful. Laying in wait to steal their prey.
When situations and circumstances seek to steal our joy, undermine our faith, dampen our hope, slow us down, lead us into disobedience or distract us from our call we need to take offensive action to root these things out and remove them.
How do we do this?
In Christ we have the victory and if we take action by the power of His Spirit we will win. We need to see past the superficial and temporal to what is really going on.
"we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:10-12
We all face challenges in life and many have another people involved. Our enemy would prefer to stay hidden and make us point the finger out of her or selfishness at those we see. We also battle within ourselves - wrong motives, compromised morals and deceptive thoughts. God gives us the power to take our thoughts captive - 2 Corinthians 10:3-5.
God gives us the weapons of The Word and praise.
The Word of God becomes powerful for us personally when it is known, owned and spoken. It is described as a sword (Ephesians 6:17) used to dismantle the strongholds in our minds that don't line up the truth of Christ. We are to destroy the ideas that the enemy has planted by renewing our minds (Hebrews 4:12, Romans 12:2).
Praise adds fuel to our faith and lifts your eyes off your circumstances and on to our awesome God. We should praise no matter what is going on in our lives. Take your hands off the problem and let God move in the situation.
FLEE FROM UNRIGHTEOUSNESS.
Part of the requirement is choosing to run away from those things that corrupt us. The other is to pursue and fight for righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness and gentleness (1 Timothy 6:11).
Fight to stay in Church, to show gentleness instead of anger, to love people even when it is difficult. Fight for your faith while you are waiting for answers.
We can all sometimes be overwhelmed by guilt, shame and fear. The only answer is the gift of righteousness that God gives. When the accuser whispers guilt and shame in your ear, tell him what God says about you (Romans 3:22) and know that you will overcome.