By Shannon Parish
the horizon with my friend's binoculars, I stood on the deck of their home,
enjoying the view of open space that connected with their back yard.
As was my habit, whenever I got the chance to visit with them. I had
grabbed the binoculars that sat by the sliding glass doors and was watching the
local wildlife in the field beyond their garden wall.
this particular morning, I was lazily observing some cows grazing a short
distance away. One cow in
particular caught my eye as it leaned against a fence post to be enjoying a long
vigorous scratch while rubbing its neck up and down the fence post. Focusing my binoculars on the cow, I was horrified at what I
saw! "I can't believe my
eyes!” I exclaimed to my friend.
You need to come here and look at this and tell me what YOU see!
the binoculars up to her eyes, she too gasped and said, "I can't believe my
reason for the furious scratching was more than clear. The poor cow was in pain!
For some unknown reason, the cow's horns had not been trimmed.
The left horn had grown up, twisted, turned down and was growing into the
skull, just behind her eyes. The
open wound was caked with dried blood and swarming, stinging flies!
immediately called the Humane Society, and unfortunately, never found out what
happened to the cow.
that day as I was driving home from running some errands, I passed by another
field, in another part of the city. Rimming
the field was a barbed wire fence. A
fluttering commotion caught my eye as I drove by, and in a moments glance, I
took in a most amazing sight! "I
can't believe my eyes!” I
on the barbed wire sat a little tiny sparrow, and on top of the sparrow trying
to mate with it was a large black bird!
This is a weird day!” I
said out loud to the Lord as I drove on. "What
are you showing me?” Silence hung
in the air. Slowly shaking my head
and pondering the strange events of the day, I drove on home.
that evening, while in our Wednesday evening worship service, I couldn't shake
the memories of what I had experienced during the day. You know how it is. . . you think you are having a
"normal" day, but keep having something played over and over in your
mind, as though a patient teacher were showing you something that you needed to
grab a hold of in answer to something else.
my heart was turned toward the Throne, the events of the day mentally replayed
once again, but this time I gained an understanding. "The cow represents us as Christians.
As we graze in our green pastures, we continue to grow and enjoy life on
this earth. Like the cow's horn,
our thoughts continue to grow, constantly churning and mulling things over.
And, like the cow, if we do not submit ourselves to the Masters touch,
those thoughts can become out of control without being pruned back.
our thought life can turn on us and affect the way we see things, causing great
open wounds for the enemy to torment and feed upon. If left to our selves, without the surgery of God's cleansing
Word and the conviction of the Holy Spirit, our thoughts will eventually cause
our demise. We will be destroyed by
our own imaginations, pain, and misconceptions.
Frantically we try to fill the void caused by the unknown affliction,
either by laying blame, accepting the spirit of offense, self punishing
ourselves by impulsive shopping or eating binges , etc. .
. or heaven forbid, by
is represented by the black bird that was trying to mate with the sparrow.
The sparrow (again, representing us), was allowing the black bird (sin
and every evil work) to mate with it. This
is an abomination to God and is an unnatural thing for a child of God and
resident of God's Kingdom to allow to happen.
17:10 says, "I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give
every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings."
38:10; "'Thus says the Lord GOD: "On that day it shall come to pass
that thoughts will arise in your mind, and you will make an evil plan:"
1:28-2:1; "And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge,
God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness,
covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit,
evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud,
boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning,
untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful;
who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such
things are worthy of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who
you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge
another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things.
8:7 states, "Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not
subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be."
2:3-5 encourages us by reminding us, "Let nothing be done through selfish
ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than
each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests
of others. Let this mind be in you
which was also in Christ Jesus . . ."
doesn't matter what has been done to us, or perceived to have been done to us.
Our responsibility lies in judging our own hearts and minds.
Casting down vain imaginations, and everything that exalts itself against
the knowledge of God. And don't we
know that this is sometimes a moment by moment thing?
Thoughts and intentions grow much faster than horns, and are much more
deadly. Because they not only
affect ourselves, but those around us.
time an offense comes, or an accusation against a brother or sister in the Lord,
TRIM YOUR THOUGHTS! You may be
passing judgment on someone in an unrighteous manner.
How can you, being flesh and blood, know the intentions and motives of
another's heart? Aren't we only
commanded to love one another?
sigh as I reflect upon all that God has shown me.
My hands are full just cleaning up and trimming up my own mind.
Who has the time to dwell on offense or judgment?
Let God do that. . . He does
a much better job anyway. . . .
and, uh. . . . . welcome to CHARACTER 101.
(Class is NEVER dismissed!)
A Cartoonist, Graphic Facilitator and Creative Life
Coach, Shannon Parish devotes her life
to encouraging those who are fed up with the 'status-quo' and are determined
and pursue their purpose and destiny in life through one-on-one mentoring,
facilitated workshops and retreats.
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(c) copyright 2010 All world
rights reserved, Shannon Parish, Living Stones Center.
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