You know the scenario. You’re driving down the road and you see a little furry friend just off to the side gathering acorns (or whatever else squirrels do). At the sound of your approaching vehicle, the squirrel freezes in its tracks, looks around with that look of utter terror in its beady black eyes, and begins to dart around in several erratic, exasperated, and nonsensical directions. It seems like he changes his mind twelve times in two seconds on which way to run!
I think we’ve all been there. We’ve all felt an overwhelming sense of terrified panic. Chances are we’ve all looked about as silly as the squirrel does when he’s trying to avoid getting flattened.
But I guess it doesn’t really matter how you look when you’re desperate for a way out.
Whenever I see this play out, the question I always ask myself is why. Why doesn’t the squirrel run away from the road and away from the oncoming car? Whether he’s in the middle of the road or ten yards to the side, he always seems to run straight into the path of the wheels of the car. Sometimes he makes it, sometimes he doesn’t.
Well, I guess there’s only one time he doesn’t make it…
I think we can understand his plight if we put ourselves in his place. I want you to imagine you’re standing there minding your own business and suddenly you hear a loud roaring noise and perceive something about two hundred times your size moving toward you so fast that you don’t have time to grasp the exact projection of its movement.
All you know is that you need to run.
That is what the squirrel experiences, at least it would seem that way to me. The reason he doesn’t know which way to run is that he can’t see the big picture. He can’t see things from my perspective. All he knows is that he’s in danger.
This reminds me of myself in many ways. I have an unbelievable tendency to panic and make a run for it when things happen that are so big I don’t understand. Have you ever felt like you forget everything you know in a second? Some would call this “freaking out.” Whatever happens when things take us by surprise, it’s good to remember that God is the one in control, that he’s the one driving. He’s got a better view than I do, and he knows that if I could see things the way he does I wouldn’t worry so much.
See, the truth is there’s plenty of room all around the little squirrel to escape the danger. He isn’t really trapped. What traps him is his fear. Will you let fear trap you, or will you seek to see things from a little higher off the ground?