The Return Of The Mouse

February 26, 2021
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Listen while you read: "This Is My Father's World"1 (Lyrics)

Last summer, I repaired the broken glass on the fence side of the greenhouse. This required taking down the neighbouring fence to gain access to the panes. In so doing, I closed the entrance for the mice that set up home in the cold weather. Now, instead, the mice have moved into the adjoining work shed.

The first one that I caught a few weeks ago I released in the local park. It went off jigging left and then right as it sprinted into the bushes. Job done, I thought. Over the next few days, I found out that he was not alone. I caught another six mice of different shapes and sizes, but I sensed that the first one had returned. So, after searching online, I found out that they can find their way back from quite a distance. Oh dear!

I transported the subsequent mice by car further up the road on the edge of the town. Hopefully this was far enough away from home for them not to return.

Finally, after several visits, I managed to outsmart the initial interloper. This involved getting a new trap and modifying it to prevent his means of escape, as he had gnawed his way out of the first one. Now, I have taken him up to the fields for him to leap out and join his co-conspirators, thus far with no further signs of a return.

Like the mice in the shed, there are seasons in my life when unhelpful stuff sneaks in.

2 Corinthians 10:4-5 – For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ. (ESV)

As fast as I close one door to sneaky thoughts and wrong attitudes, they seem to wheedle their way back in through another, until they are taken captive. If I am diligent, they may have to try harder to enter my heart the second, third, or fourth time around, but they use anything that I watch on the television, robbing me of my peace, clarity, and restraint as I become sucked into the world. Even if we became hermits, our fallen nature would allow for unhelpful stuff to come right on in and take residence in our souls.

Without Jesus to take out the unhelpful stuff from our beings, we are surely lost to the world's influence about us, nibbling away at our beings and making its home there. Praise God that in Jesus, we can declare His sovereignty over our pride, failures, and weakness! Humbly, we can choose to seek Him, who has taken captivity captive, to reign over us, because Jesus has the authority to take our sins, which hold us captive, as far away as the east is from the west.

We have only to humble ourselves and ask.

Prayer: Lord, when we become vulnerable to temptations, from ourselves and from the world, which rob us of Your peace and presence within, grant us Your gift of forgiveness. When there seems to be no hope, take away the thoughts that hold and bind us captive. May we know Your Holy Spirit's deliverance, light, and love that come from trusting Jesus as we walk with You. Amen.

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About the author:

Rod Marshall <roderickmarshall@yahoo.com>
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Encouraging words, Rod.


    Such an uplifting message! Thank you.


    Good one. I didn’t know about mice returning from a distance. Thanks.


    I applaud you for your humane treatment of the mice. They are God’s creatures, too.
    I call myself a pro-lifer; I don’t kill anything except mosquitoes!
    (B.C. Canada)


    Thank you for today’s Devotional. That was a wonderful example of allegory and I thoroughly enjoyed it as I have experienced mice coming back again and again and wrong attitudes sneaking back in!


    Thanks Rod! great illustration. Great lesson. I was thinking, the big things are easier to keep out than the little ones but the little ones we often overlook, and they cause insidious damage we often do not see. Like mice and wiring! Thank you for that. It’s one I’ll pass on. Blessings.


    Hello Rod,
    Good one! Yes, you have written a very good reminder of “all the stuff” that is out there these days that can take away our attention from the important “stuff” in our lives and the important focus needs to be seeking and obeying our loving Lord.
    Blessings for your writings.


    Dear Rod,
    Thank you for the amusing tale of the persistent mouse. I remember at home, my mom battled with mice for many years because off the kitchen was a storage shed which us children didn’t always watch getting the door closed tightly. It is so true how those thoughts and attitudes can sneak into our lives. Great reminder done in a very funny way. Enjoy your weekend.


    Rod thanks for your devotional today. Your mouse relocation initiatives reminded me of a University professor we attended church within Ottawa.
    He live in an upscale neighbourhood in Ottawa. This well treed development had lots of squirrels, which he trapped and relocated to the University campus that was about 5 miles away. He dapped their tails with white paint in order to identify whether they were returning. I don’t believe any did so, favouring perhaps the relaxed campus environment over the snobby neighbourhood.


    Thankyou a ton for writing this, keep it up, it REALLY encourages pilgrims on the WAY the Truth, and the Life.
    I’ll “confess” the living “strains” I’ve lived through these past 10 years included 2 mice OVER-RUNS bigtime — I say bigtime — and 1 mice takeover on a smaller scale. So memories (not bad) of all that flooded back. I had no time to keep them alive but wished I could. I did do mini-funerals for most of the two-or -three hundred, apologizing to most as they were thrown to feed the food chain. I thank God I got through that, sometimes with tears, some were actually so beautiful.


    I laughed at your mouse adventure. I had a similar experience. We used to live out in the country, where we had a kennel large enough to hold several dogs. It was also over-run by field mice, dozens of them. My presence in the kennel made no difference to them. Perhaps 50 at a time would race around the walls above the kennel stalls inside. Our dogs tolerated them. I said to them, “And you call yourselves TERRIERS!” Finally, I told myself that these mice were God’s creatures too; I could not bring myself to start destroying them.
    I got a humane trap and began catching about a half dozen a day, then releasing them a few hundred feet down the road in front of our house.
    I watched helplessly as they raced en mass across the road back towards the kennel. I realized that I was not seeing the last of them, I was merely recycling them. The last time this happened, one mouse remained on my side of the road. It had snowed, and the little critter was noticeably silhouetted against the snow. Up the road about a hundred feet away a large hawk was perched on the top of an electric line pole, and he looked both watchful and hungry. We were out in the open, with the tree line about a dozen feet away. I motioned the mouse towards it, muttering “Beat it …, or you’re dead meat!” Somehow, he caught my meaning, and made it into the trees. After this I realized how hopeless my task was and reverted to “Live and let live.” After all, the mice weren’t doing any real damage, and the dogs, to my disgust, got along fine with them.
    Keep writing, and may God continue to bless you.
    (Ontario, Canada)


    Thanks, Rod, for sharing your experience, strength, and hope today in this interesting mouse devotional. Blessings on our journey.


    There used to be a man in our church who always prayed before he went out, that he be “covered in the blood of Jesus.” It was for him protection from what he experienced as evil thoughts and temptation. He had several addictions which he had been freed from. He later became involved in a spiritual deliverance team.


    Hello my friend! Very encouraging thoughts from God’s word.

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