Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Master The Tempest Is Raging"1 (Lyrics)
Mark 12:30 – Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. (NIV)
I felt the slightest whisper of its touch as it lit on my arm. A mosquito! Instead of swatting it, as I normally would, I blew it away. This happened three or four times as I was walking my dog, Sparky, along our favourite trail beside a thick, wooded area near our home. As strange as it seemed, it appeared to be the same pesky mosquito every time. I watched it circle around then return and light on my arm again, as if it were trying to get my attention. Well, now it definitely had my attention with its weird behaviour, but if it didn't quit annoying me, it would eventually get swatted.
As I stepped into a sun-drenched area of the trail, the strangest thought occurred to me: Could these continuous, whispery touches of that mosquito lighting on my arm somehow be a message from God, spiritually speaking? He often spoke to me while I was walking on this trail. Yet, would God use a tiny, insignificant, detested creature like a lowly mosquito to get my attention?
I despised mosquitoes, but the Scripture suddenly came to my mind that God "chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things" (1 Corinthians 1:28a NIV) to teach us His magnificent truths. It seemed kind of silly, but the thought persisted, and try as I might, I couldn't shake the idea out of my mind.
If this were the case, by the strangest stretch of the imagination, what was God trying to say to me?
As I stood in that sunny spot, it seemed that the light of His Word began to shine into my mind, and I didn't like what it began to reveal.
Lately, when I had been busily immersed in an exciting writing project that was important to me, I had to admit that I had gradually been starting to cut time from what was important to God. I had not been giving sufficient attention to meditating on His Word, prayer time had shrunk, and even people who used to hear from me on a regular basis had been neglected. Perhaps God had been trying to whisper these facts into my ear for some time, but in my busyness, I had blown His whispers away, just as I had that persistent mosquito, and continued to work on my project. But the Whisperer was persistent. God, in His loving patience, continued to try to get my attention by any means. Had I not taken the time to ask Him what He wanted me to hear, He might have had to resort to more drastic measures, which I knew I would not have been happy with.
As I stood there, deep in thought, pondering these strange insights, I felt very convicted, and I hung my head in shame. My precious Lord had given me countless blessings, and I was so self-centred that I did not even take time to hear His tender whisper: "What about Me? Where do I fit in?"
No, I didn't kneel down on that rocky trail, I simply bowed my head, and this time, it was my turn to whisper those all-important words of repentance: "Dear Lord, forgive my selfishness. You are first in my life, now and always. Help me never to forget that vital truth again."
And God smiled, as a gorgeous monarch butterfly lit gently on my shoulder.
I believe that sometimes, we are all guilty of being too busy with our "stuff" to give God the time and honour due His name.
Perhaps the next time a mosquito tries to light on your arm, you will be reminded of my story and check out this possibility in your life.
Prayer: Lord God, forgive us our unconscious and unintended trespasses against You. And when we stray, please whisper very loudly in our ears. Amen.