Because nothing takes the place of fresh pumpkin I decided to cook one in preparation for all of the upcoming holiday goodies…pumpkin scones, pumpkin pie and pumpkin-squash soup.
It wasn’t long until the unfolding drama caught my attention. A very plump squirrel was happily marking his territory—those two pumpkin halves. He feasted like it was the finest! Curiosity got the better of me and in my attempts at capturing him on camera, I was taken with his persistence, not to mention his selfishness. Just as keenly as he guarded himself from “human” scent, he also with a vigilance and aggression, guarded his provision. Each time another squirrel would attempt to close in to partake in the feast of goodness, he would lunge as if to say, “back off, this is mine, all mine”. Feasting like royalty, he had no intentions on sharing the bounty.
I found myself both entertained and somewhat saddened by this little exchange. In a strange sort of way I saw a picture of the church and God’s goodness. What is the correlation you ask?
So often as Christians we partake in the feast set before us….through blessings and circumstance, through great teaching that is right and true, through favor poured out, peace and joy unspeakable….we guard it and mark it as our very own.
The world watches, and in their attempts to get close, we push them away. We guard “our turf” because it’s safe and good and right. Sharing might leave us lacking or doing without.
Luke 6:38 says, Give away your life, you’ll find life given back, but not merely given back—given back with bonus and blessing. Giving, not getting, is the way. Generosity begets generosity. (The Message Translation).
Going about my day, I soon forgot about the squirrel and his pumpkin, only to later discover an even greater act of drama. Mr. Squirrel had finally succeeded in getting rid of the “other” squirrels only to take on 2 new and bigger opponents. Not for one minute did he drop his guard. He scurried and lunged back and forth between 2 very large crows, and never once did he relent. The
battle got intense but finally, the crows were gone and he had succeeded in guarding his turf and keeping it all to himself.
Yes, I am fully aware that God created animals with survival and protective instincts. But, as I witnessed what seemed a trivial animal kingdom drama on this wintry morning, I couldn’t help but reflect on the goodness of God, all that I have to be thankful for, and how I can become better at sharing His Goodness with others.