And He said: “Take heed that you not be deceived. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am He,’ and, ‘The time has drawn near.’ Therefore do not go after them. Luke 21:8 NKJV
This morning the usual chirps and chatters in my yard took on a drastically different tone.
From my perch I could see birds flying frantically back and forth. A bossy mockingbird stood guard. I thought to myself there must be a hawk in the yard.
As I collected my camera and coat I saw a couple of shadows fall over the yard as I headed outdoors. Kind of ominous. I’m thinking to myself that hawk is flying pretty low. I often see them but not usually this close.
I stand outside waiting for a decent picture of anything with wings. Then I spot one. And then another. Soon there are about a dozen in the sky.
Now, I’m no expert on birds but even I realize something is amiss. The hawks I usually see are loners. I may see two together, three at most but very rarely. I have my doubts but keep shooting anyway. I’m anxious to see what’s on my camera.
My “hawks” weren’t hawks at all.
They were vultures.
Some people are like those vultures. They look like one thing but their behavior eventually reveals the truth.
They live off others. Their presence is overwhelming. They prey on those small and weak. In nature, most creatures readily recognize the enemy. We aren’t always as discerning.
Our enemies are rarely obvious. They don’t arrive with a pitchfork and horns. Some are flatterers. Many endearing. Our enemies often know the right buttons to push. They can be manipulative. Often, we are oblivious until it is too late!
I’ve been praying for wisdom lately. I didn’t expect this lesson today. I asked God for a few bird pictures expecting cardinals or finches. I received far more than that.
I like hawks. God uses them to remind me to “fly high” when I am tempted to “get low” and tell someone what I’m really thinking. I often see them when I need a bit of inspiration, no coincidence I’m sure.
I was reminded today to look closely and not act on what I think I see.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. 1 Peter 5:8 NKJV
We can’t resist our adversary if we don’t recognize him.
Every good deal, isn’t a good deal.
Some “problems” are merely distractions to pull us off track.
Don’t be deceived into thinking God doesn’t love you. He does.
Don’t be deceived into thinking setbacks will last forever. They won’t.
Don’t be deceived by rhetoric that is contrary to God. All lies.
When in doubt, check it out.
Investigate. Research. Read. Pray.
Listen to God when your gut is screaming “Danger!”
Wise choices often precede a blessing.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. James 1:5 NKJV