What are your little foxes?

“Catch the foxes for us, the little foxes that are ruining the vineyards,
while our vineyards are in blossom.” Song of Solomon 2:15

Have you ever had a big trial in your life that you sail through spiritually?

You walk in faith and trust and the joy of the Lord. You see God’s faithfulness at the end of the tunnel and His goodness protects you through it all.

  • Sometimes you even get a hint of pride and look at the trials of others and think, “They just need to trust God more.”
  • Sometimes those around us will say, “I’m just so impressed by your attitude!” And our chest puffs out a bit and we think, “Yea! That WAS pretty good, wasn’t it?”
  • Sometimes we really DO consider it all joy — the first time. Maybe even when the second or the third thing happens. BUT we find our joy waffling a bit as more little things continue to happen.

Then we encounter those little foxes.

You know what I mean. The little things that drive you crazy. They come around and nip at your heels. Day in and day out and you become exhausted with dealing with the chew marks on the heels of your faith. You maybe snap more than you’d like. Maybe you find yourself wondering where God is in the middle of it. You feel like your vineyards of faith are being ruined, or at least weakened. When you were blossoming in growth and strength, these foxes come along and bite and chew and run away and the vines are weakened and the blossoms fade and fall.

little foxes can rob us of joy!

“Catch the foxes for us, The little foxes that are ruining the vineyards,
While our vineyards are in blossom.” Song 2:15

I was struck by this word today: catch the foxes. Have you ever caught a mouse by accident? No, of course not. You catch a pest on purpose, by planning and faithful execution of that plan. What, then, should OUR plan be for catching those little foxes that are ruining our vineyards?

First we need to find out what those foxes are!

We might think they are whatever is a hardship for us: the trial, the little thing driving us crazy. But we would be WRONG! The foxes are our ATTITUDES to those trials! It isn’t the trial that is weakening our faith, it is our faithless response to the trial that is the culprit.

God actually has a plan for us with those trials. They are a part of our spiritual training.

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials,
knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.
And let endurance have its perfect result,
so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:2-4

God’s plan calls for us to learn faithfulness and joy in the midst of these trials. To let the testing of our faith produce endurance. Endurance. That’s a word we don’t like to hear. The dictionary says it is:

  1. the fact or power of enduring or bearing pain, hardships, etc.
  2. the ability or strength to continue or last, especially despite fatigue, stress, or other adverse conditions

What are we doing to thwart the lesson of endurance in our lives?

How are we stopping endurance from having its perfect work in our lives? What are we doing to circumvent the transforming work of God in our lives?

What are the foxes in YOUR life and how is God showing you to catch them so your vineyard grows strong and produces abundantly?

All Scripture quotations are taken from the NASB.
image courtesy of: wikipedia commons Keulemans

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9 Comments

  1. Kate, thank you for this today. I have been having such a hard time lately (this whole year really) and my attitude STINKS with a capital S! Those foxes are making me turn into a werewolf – fangs, snarls and all. Well the facial hair started after I turned 40! LOL!!!

    Thanks for your encouragement!

    Reply
  2. This is wonderful this morning. I have pressed this to my blog, I wanted to share it because it was really encouraging to me and it has me really thinking. I have been complaining so much about being in a rut, and now I realize its my complaining attitude that is keeping me from moving forward. Thanks so much.

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  3. Thanks for this message Kate, I really needed to hear it. God bless you my sister in Christ!

    Reply
  4. Oh this is such a great reminder. I was struck by the idea that the orchard was in blossom. It was early in the season. I think of so many friends who have been plagued by the damage done early on in their lives. How much trouble can be created while we are in blossom. Made me realize how vital is it that I help my kids (and myself!) to be aware of the foxes that can do damage, the thought processes and unforgiving patterns that can set in while they’re young. Thank you.

    Reply
  5. i have been encouraging another woman with this very thing. Yes, her trial is difficult…but not “unendurable”. She keeps going back to “wanting it over” or just wanting relief or most often i hear her saying…”i just want to be happy again. ” i am not glib about trials, having been through a few myself; and not always in the manner in which God would desire me to walk through them. But i ‘learned’ endurance…by ‘learning’ to trust…which then led to actually experiencing joy in the midst of the trial. It is not easy….and as you wrote…we need to pursue these things; and catch those things that thwart God’s purpose in the trial. Well done, as always, my dear!

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  6. me again….i really loved when you said…”it’s not the trial or the driving-us-crazy little things that weaken our faith….it’s our FAITHLESS attitude! Love it and intend to drive it home to myself and those i encourage, counsel and/or reprove! Supercalifragilistiexpialidouciously said!!!

    Reply
  7. Great post! I don’t think I ever thought of attitude as being the little foxes that spoil, but now it just seems so clear to me that you are right! Attitude just makes the difference – every time.

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  8. Kate,

    This is such a great message…thank you! Thanks also for linking up this week. Hope your week has been blessed!

    Sarah

    Reply
  9. Such good words, Kate! For me, it’s often the accumulation of all the little things that discourage. Those little foxes are a handy trick of the devil–he knows we’ll just try to ignore them. You give wisdom by encouraging us to know what ours are. Thank you!

    Reply

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