The other day I laughingly told my husband I felt like I was fighting a battle with nature on two fronts. Off my back deck is my bird feeder. I’ve been feeding the birds there for a while now. For quite some time we were able to keep the squirrels at bay and the birds were loving it. Ah, but then the squirrels figured out how to get at the birdseed. So now when I’m home, I’m on guard trying to scare them away whenever I see them. Add to that the neighbors cat skulking about under the feeder or up on my deck, and its a battle for the feeder and to protect my feathered friends from attack.
On the front porch is my hummingbird feeder. I hadn’t had any issues with that before either, but now all of a sudden the bees have found it. I have watched them literally chase the hummingbirds away! Then there’s the finches who keep coming and drinking from the feeder even though I put water out for them elsewhere. Some days I feel like I’m running from door to door shooing things away. Crazy, I know, but I like my birds. But you know, with all that, I bet my little friends have no idea there’s someone out there fighting their battles for them.
We are not always aware we are getting help in our battles either. We don’t always see the things the Lord is doing behind the scenes to help us in our own fights. We also may never see the angels that are around us protecting us and doing their work. But it’s happening all the same.
Yesterday I glanced out the door and my bird feeder wasn’t there. When I went outside I saw it laying on the ground broken. Obviously some really fat squirrel had jumped on it the wrong way and broken off a couple tabs that were holding it together. I was not a happy camper.
I was tempted to just quit and be done with the whole thing. I have fought this birdseed battle many times before. And with critters a whole lot bigger than squirrels. But what would quitting have accomplished? Sure, I might be done with the hassle. The squirrels would take their battle elsewhere, and I wouldn’t be bothered by them any more. But I would lose out on the prize which is the enjoyment I get from watching the birds come to the feeder.
Obviously I’m just using my bird feeder stories as a metaphor of other things we may be battling. Have you ever thought about the prize we might miss out on if we give up on our battles too soon? James 1:12 says “The man who patiently endures the temptations and trials that come to him is the truly happy man. For once his testing is complete he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to all who love him.”
Maybe you’re fighting a battle in your life today and you feel like you’re just ready to call it quits and throw in the towel. Maybe its the kind of battle you have been fighting for a long time. Perhaps you’re just tired and you don’t know if you have the strength to fight another day. I always find Galatians 6:9 encouraging in those times. “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.”
If that’s you today don’t give up. We only lose when we quit and stop trying. Give Him your heavy load to carry. Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
The Lord never told us we wouldn’t have problems but He did promise to be with us through them. Psalm 34:17 “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles”. Don’t let today’s battles overshadow tomorrow’s promises. Reach out to someone you trust and let them help you carry the burden in prayer. Trust that the Lord is with you. Focus on the Lord and His promises, not the problem.
As to the birdseed battle, my husband fixed the feeder so we are back in business! Do I think for a moment that that particular battle will never need to be fought again? Nope. Not for a moment. But we will persevere!