When John and I were married in 1963, we moved into the little house on the farm known as Grandma's house. Grandma had moved into the big house with John's parents a number of years before.
One morning, I was surprised to see a small pile of sawdust on a window sill in the kitchen. After breakfast, I started searching out the reason for the sawdust.
The window was dressed with both curtains and a roll-up pull-down blind. At the bottom of the blind was a flat piece of wood covered with folded blind material from the manufacturer. The weight of the wood gave stability against the breeze when the window was open. To move the blind up and down, we would take hold of the wood and pull or push the blind to the desired length to shield our eyes from the sun. The window was on the west side of the house, so we could watch the beautiful sunsets over the lake.
My investigation caught the culprit. A carpenter ant was living in the blind and munching on the wood. After further inspection, I was able to give John the bad news that all the window sills were infested with ants and needed attention. John and his dad had to hire a contractor to replace the windows and sills.
The house had been built in 1939 of non-treated lumber. John's grandmother had paid the builder with his meals and a cow.
This little ant taught me a spiritual lesson early in my walk with Jesus: I need to be watching for thoughts or deeds that would entice me to move away from the Lord. That single ant, though small, if left unchecked, could have done a lot of damage to the wood in my blind, and if I had not noticed it, I would not have found the ant colony, which could have done much more damage to the house. A single small wrong in my life, if not dealt with, can lead to much bigger things. When this happens, I grieve the Holy Spirit. Catching the lone ant in my blind stopped the destruction that could have come to the walls of the house.
2 Corinthians 13:5a – Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. (NIV)
In our walk with Jesus Christ, we must be on the lookout for signs of being independent of the Spirit's leading. Worries of life and financial problems are two culprits that can steal away the joy of our salvation and lead us to thinking that we know best. Through reading Scripture, we are convicted of what is sin in our lives.
1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (NIV)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we ask that we would always be aware of the cost of our adoption as Your children at Calvary. May our lives show concern for the closeness of our walk with You. Help us to be confident in our vigilance, knowing that You are helping us to keep watch. Amen.
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Listen while you read: "I Will Sing The Wondrous Story" (Lyrics)