When it comes to bugs, I'm not the most squeamish female in the world. I recognize that they are God's creation, put here for a purpose, and I try to leave them alone and preserve them in their natural habitat. That, of course, means, "outdoors", and especially, "not in my trailer"! Sometimes it even means, "Not on my trail!" The problem is that "my" trail passes through "their" forest, and as such, I try to respect them.
can't they respect me?
You see, many of these bugs bite. I'm
allergic to some of them, and even worse, some of them carry disease.
It's true that most of the usual biting bugs actually tend to leave
me alone. Mosquitoes will only go after me if their favorite meal (read
"my husband") is not available, and though the deer flies do like to
buzz around my head, they will usually choose my son's delicious flesh
over my own. Black flies, on the other hand, are a totally different
story. They regard me as an ice cream Sunday with fudge sauce, whip
cream and a cherry on top, and to get to my delicious blood, they work
their way up my sleeves and pant legs and even under the rim of my hat;
and they seem to prefer the flesh of my scalp.
With our trip to
Cape Breton taking place in the fall, I wasn't overly worried about
black flies, for they are primarily a nuisance of the spring. I would
learn, however, that while the Cape Breton black flies do die off in the
summertime, they re-emerge, hungrier than ever, in the fall. This meant
that every time we would stop for breath on the many beautiful trails,
the black flies would swarm me incessantly. It got so bad on our first
day of hiking that whenever my husband stopped for a breather, I paced
circles around him just to get away from my menace. I probably put in
twice the number of kilometers, and while he got back to the car without
a single bite, I looked more like a pin cushion. How I wished I had
taken the bug repellant with me!
In my "hike" through life, I am
also bothered by certain "biting bugs". These are better known as
Just like I am not particularly bothered by
mosquitoes or deer flies, there are many temptations that don't entice
me in the least. I do have, however, my own little set of "black fly"
temptations that get me every time. They come, seemingly out of nowhere,
and there seems to be nothing I can do to deter them. Time and time
again I stumble and fall into the exact same traps. Oh, God, I need "sin
Fortunately, such a thing DOES exist. God promises
His own help in overcoming temptation: "The temptations in your life
are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He
will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you
are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure." (1
Cor. 10:13 NLT).
In other words, when we rely solely on God, He
will help us overcome those pesky--and dangerous!--"temptation bugs":
"My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness." (2
Cor. 12:9 NLT).
Just what does God's "sin repellant" look like?
The first "sin repellant" is humility: "...humble yourselves
before God." (James 4:7a NLT). We need to humbly admit to God that
we need help, that we can't fight temptation alone.
"sin repellant" is prayer. We need to ask God to give us a way out of
temptation: "And don't let us yield to temptation, but rescue us
from the evil one." (Matt. 7:13 NLT)
The next "Sin
repellant" is to resist: "Resist the devil, and he will flee from
you." (James 4:7b NLT).
How do we resist?
the final layer of "sin repellant". We need to fight the devil with
Scripture: "I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin
against you" (Psalm 119:11 NLT). Let's remember that Jesus Himself
resisted temptation by quoting scripture (See
Luke 4). But in order to have that "word in my heart", I
need to be diligent in studying God's Word: "Oh, how I love your
instructions! I think about them all day long. Your commands make me
wiser than my enemies, for they are my constant guide." (Psalm
The best news is that this "sin repellant" can't
be forgotten at home. It is available to all of us at all times, as long
• Humble ourselves and admit we have weaknesses and need
• Pray and ask God's help in overcoming;
ever on the alert for temptation; and
• Diligently study God's Word.
Anyone want some repellant against black flies? I have a good
brand; but God's brand of "sin repellant" works even better!
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author --
"Aboard God's Train -- A
Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet
Scriptural Nuggets, a
website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with
Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
access the entire "Lessons From Cape Breton" mini-series, please click