“Mom, there’s a bird in the house!”
You see, evenings in our home are very busy. I get home from work late, and then there is suppertime, tending to an infant, sports, homework, sometimes church, housework, lunch making, and finally, bedtime. On this particular evening, my Mr. was at the church office working and my three sons and I were carrying on at home. I don’t remember what I was cooking for supper, but I was cooking while my older boys were working on their homework (site words or something), and the newest boy was nestled at my chest in a baby wrap.
When I heard my eldest make that statement, my mind went someplace much wiser than my natural state and I immediately assessed the situation: it is dusk, the boys have had the door open and shut a dozen (or hundred times) this afternoon, and the door is never shut completely. Birds don’t fly at night…but bats do.
There was a BAT in my house.
I calmly and quietly told the boys that it was not a bird, and to go to the baby’s room and shut the door. They panicked and screamed and slammed the nursery door, while I grabbed a…well anything to apprehend the intruder.
Let me stop there. Intrusions happen. Hopefully not always in a literal sense in our homes, but unfortunately, they do happen in a figurative sense on a spiritual level. Resentment. Anger. Depression. Illness. Hardships. Sin. They are all gross flying rodents of our spiritual lives. They swoop in and invoke chaos.
So I grabbed a broom (seemed legit) and swatted the bat (while baby slept in his papoose at my chest). The bat collapsed to the floor. Feeling triumphant, I told the boys to come out. As they do, the bat begins to fly again. It swooped at me. (It really did). It swooped at my boys. (At least that’s how I remember it). So I swatted again and my boys (with girl-like screams) took refuge behind the closed bathroom door and my infant begins to cry.
You see, when intrusions happen in our lives we all make a decision of how we will react. We run and hide in terror (like my brave, superhero sons). We sit helplessly (like my new, fresh smelling baby boy). We fight back (like I did with my broom).
Psalms 18:32 reminds us that “It is God who arms me with strength, and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of deer, and sets me on high places. He teaches my hands to make war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze … I have pursued my enemies and overtaken them; neither did I turn back again till they were destroyed, I have wounded them, so that they were not able to rise; they have fallen under my feet. For You have armed me with strength for the battle; you have subdued under me those who rose up against me.”
I want to encourage you that God has promised us strength and that those things that rise up against will fall under our feet in His power. Stand up against the intruders of your spiritual life and find joy in Him.
That evening we finally defeated (um, killed and exposed of) the bat in our house. I’m constantly reminded of that bat in my day to day life. I am reminded that I do not have to sit idly by nor do I have to run and hide, but I can raise my weapons and defend myself against the intrusions of my heart.