Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Tale of Two Turtles

A few months ago, our neighbor found a tiny turtle & gave it to my son, London. "Cody" has since become a beloved member of our menagerie. London even takes him outside to play in a fashioned "hotel" & pool.

Later, I found the friendliest box turtle I have ever come across. "Crush" was given his name as his markings reminded London of orange soda. He stayed in one of our hotel tanks for a few days, feasting on a variety of fruits & insects. One afternoon, we returned him to his forest home. I watched him until he tucked himself away, next to & under some wood.

That evening, neighbors stopped by & the kids played with Cody. The adult topic was self-control. Deb shared that her family uses Eph. 5:18a ("Do not become drunk with wine...") to extend to other traits that Paul advised against, such as boasting, gossip, jealousy, love of money & anger. The notion of being "drunk with anger", etc. fascinated us. Arguing children interrupted us. Oh well, time to head in for the night, anyway.....
Preparing for bed, I shared with London our adult conversation, specifically how anger can take control of us. He really seemed to be putting things together when he abruptly cried out in horror. Cody had been left outside, forgotten in a moment of anger! Flashlights were of no avail in our search. London was terrified for Cody. What a perfect example of the topic, but this was NOT the time to point that out. We prayed for Cody's safety & for London's (self-)forgiveness. We prayed that Cody would find a safe, new home, near water....or, that if it was God's will, we would find him.

The next morning, I went out back just in time to see Crush venturing forth. I said a prayer for his safety & headed out front. Tucked away, next to some mulch, my eyes fell on tee-tiny Cody! It was a miracle in itself that my eyes fell that direction.

Rarely are lessons demonstrated in such a timely & dramatic way. London & I immediately said a prayer of thanks & praise. We discussed anger, self-control & how AWESOME God is.
When Jesus was tempted, (Matt 4:1-11, Luke 4:1-13), He used scripture to fight off satan. Paul instructed us to, "Put on the whole armor of God..." (Eph 6:13), which includes, "...the sword of the Spirit, which is the very Word of God" (vs. 17b). Anger & lack of self-control caused Cody to be left out. The Bible is clear that those are both tools of the adversary. Paul instructs us to arm ourselves by reading, studying and meditating on the Word of God, so that will be prepared against the wiles of evil.

A few days later, another fellow joined us...a young, but strangely gentle baby snapper.

(This happened a couple of weeks ago. The other day, we spied Crush meandering around one of our garden oaks).

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