“I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house down!” Famous words spoken by the Big Bad Wolf in the children’s story “The Three Little Pigs”. (Second Grade teacher at heart and mind, remember?) Each Little Pig had built themselves a house: one of straw, one of sticks, and the last pig built his of brick. As the story goes; the Big Bad Wolf is true to his word and blows the house of straw down. The first Little Pig runs for shelter in his brother’s house of sticks. After a visit from the Big Bad Wolf, the house of sticks lay on the ground and the two Little Pigs run for shelter in their brother’s house of bricks. Ending happily (for the pigs), the wolf huffs and puffs, puffs and huffs, and huffs and puffs again but is unable to blow in the house of bricks. The Three Little Pigs learned a valuable lesson….seek shelter in a solid place!
What about us? Where do we run for shelter when trouble is huffing and puffing all around? I don’t know about you, but I first tend to rush and dwell in my emotions. Whether sadness, anger, disappointment, fear, or whatever I’m feeling, I move in and try to become a permanent resident. In reality, I wallow. Taking longer than I hate to admit, it eventually becomes evident that like the Little Pig in the straw house, staying there while things are falling apart around me isn’t an option.
Where do I run for shelter next? You guessed it. The “stick house” of worry. Ever lodge there? Somehow I, and maybe you too, think that by residing with worry we’ll be protected from all that lurks around us until WE can find a solution. Wringing hands, churning thoughts, spinning stomach, all become familiar roommates and if we stay too long we end up in a heap beneath the weight of our trouble.
I’m realizing that in times of trial, trying to find refuge in emotional “straw” or “twigs” of worry keeps me exhausted and hopeless as I’m battered by what’s raging around me. Surprisingly enough, I’m learning the same lesson as the Three Little Pigs! Stay with me…..Jesus said:
“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.” Matthew 7:24-25 (NIV)
There are always going to be “Big Bad Wolves” knocking on our doors. Even though they’re different for each of us our reaction is often the same…..to run for shelter.
The Pigs learned to seek shelter in a solid place and So. Should. We.
“The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection, my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety. Psalm 18:2 (NLT)
Isn’t it comforting to know that even when we’re still living in places that so easily crumble; we have a fortress: a place of safety, a place that will not fall, waiting for each of us. Just as the Third Little Pig welcomed his brothers, God waits for us to find our refuge in Him. I wish I could say that I’ve left my straw and twigs behind and run straight to the house of brick every time. I’m working on it and reminding myself and you, that OUR happy ending comes when we’re running for shelter straight to the One who saves us!
“Running for shelter” is this weeks discussion at http://www.tsuzanneeller.com