A recent report, in our local newspaper, gives reason for concern to hikers or even just casual walkers. In an area west of Barrie – north of Angus – a couple preparing for a hike report having been stalked by cougars! (Innisfil Journal, Sept. 6, 2012)
Having left their vehicle to begin their walk they were immediately aware of movement in the undergrowth on either side of the path they were on. In addition to this they heard what sounded like a whistling noise and felt they were being watched. Deciding to investigate whatever was there and discover what was stopping when they stopped and moving when they did, the man looked into the undergrowth then thought he was imagining things, for looking right back at him was a huge cat: a large cougar, with two others beside it. This sighting was on the outskirts of one large city and bordering another smaller one – not an area where you expect to see these creatures.
His first thought was for his wife, who he ordered back to their vehicle, and then decide how he was going to make it there safely himself. Thankfully, another vehicle suddenly arrived and the sound and that and of doors opening and closing, as more people arrived, saved him. The cats hastily retreated deeper into the bush giving him opportunity to return to the car. He had no doubt that their safety was definitely compromised should the distraction not have occurred. They each realized they had been stalked by the cougars, from the moment they had arrived.
1 Peter 5:8-9 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. (NKJV)
Similarly, the devil stalks each of us during our daily walk. He will creep into our lives and then destroy us, given ample opportunity. He will bide his time, stopping when we stop and moving right alongside us when we move. Planning to overcome and destroy us if we are not vigilant, taking steps to protect ourselves.
God is our over-comer: our Protector, as we grow in faith with Him in our lives, He shows us the safe paths to take; paths that lead us to growth and safety and not to destruction. Jesus is His rescuer, if you will, guiding us and bringing us to safety, just as the arrival of the second vehicle brought safety and escape from potential harm to this couple.
Prayer: Father, help us to be constantly aware of our surroundings and not be complacent in any way as we trust in You. Amen