News From Terre Haute, Indiana

February 9, 2013

THE JOY LADY: Satan makes sin appear as harmless and as cute as squirrels

Verna Davis
Special to the Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Before I begin, let me explain that I have nothing against squirrels. Squirrels are awfully cute as they scamper and chatter as they chase each other from tree to tree. But those squirrels have something that makes them awfully attractive. They are outside my house — where squirrels should be.

But once we lived in a house on a hill, surrounded by wildlife. Oh, and trees. There were lots of trees. Trees heavily inhabited by squirrels. We nicknamed our little spot of earth: Squirrel Haven.

One January morning, a frisky squirrel found its way into our basement, sleeping in some old clothes and chewing his way through our cache of board games, being particularly fond of Trivial Pursuit. We caught him in a squirrel trap and set him loose in the woods, thinking it was the end of things.

A few weeks later, I heard thrashing sounds floating up from the basement, followed by the sound of something very breakable hitting the floor. I fearfully turned to my husband and said, “The squirrel is back.”

“How do you know it’s the same squirrel?” Doug asked. “I just know. He probably came back for more Trivial Pursuit.” Doug laughed, “Don’t be silly.”

So, my brave protector borrowed some dog food from the dog and set the squirrel trap again, assuring me that by supper, this squirrel invasion would be over!

For three days, we heard lots of chewing, clawing, chatters and clatters coming from the basement. I was terrified the squirrel would invite his friends in for a picnic in the pantry and a sleepover in the laundry room. Doug said, “That’s silly, Verna. That squirrel is more afraid of you than you are of it.” “Want to bet on that?” I asked. Needless to say, I was relieved when the pesky pest was caught and removed from the basement. Doug put boards and bricks against the basement windows, informing me that no more squirrels would be able to find their way into our basement. When I asked for proof, he had no answer. And he calls me the silly one!

After that winter, I don’t think squirrels are nearly as cute as I used to.

Sin is a lot like that. Satan is the author of sin and he makes sin appear as harmless and as cute as squirrels playing in the trees. But when sin moves in and tries to make a home in our heart, it is a different story altogether, and sin becomes not as attractive as once thought it was. Romans 6:23 says, “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Doug was right when he said that squirrels are more afraid of us than we are of them. The great thing is, since Christ is in us, then Satan is more afraid of us than we are of him. Some may say that sounds rather squirrely, but it’s true. 1st John 4:4 says, “… the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

Put that in your squirrel trap, Satan. And stay out of my basement.

Verna Davis, speaker and writer, maybe reached at