I’ve been reading the book of Malachi this week, and seeing myself in it’s pages. It’s never easy looking at yourself in the light of truth, but it’s only by doing so that we can see who and what we really are, and what we need to do in our lives. I hate to admit this, even to acknowledge it, but I see that there have been times in my life, even recently, when I was like the people I’ve been reading about in Malachi. I wasn’t giving God the best of myself. I was giving God and everybody else the leftovers, the sloppy seconds, the easy, and half done. Allowing some things and thoughts in my life that I allowed to rob me of my joy and my strength in Christ. I’m sorry for that, but I thank God that instead of allowing me to wallow in it, He did something about it.
“Take us the foxes, the little foxes that spoil the vines.” Song of Solomon 2:15
A little thorn may cause much suffering. A little cloud may hide the sun. Little foxes spoil the vines; and little sins do mischief to the tender heart. These little sins burrow in the soul, and make it so full of that which is hateful to Christ, that he will hold no comfortable fellowship and communion with us. A great sin cannot destroy a Christian, but a little sin can make him miserable. Jesus will not walk with his people unless they drive out every known sin. He says, “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love, even as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.” Some Christians very seldom enjoy their Saviour’s presence. How is this? Surely it must be an affliction for a tender child to be separated from his father. Art thou a child of God, and yet satisfied to go on without seeing thy Father’s face? What! thou the spouse of Christ, and yet content without his company! Surely, thou hast fallen into a sad state, for the chaste spouse of Christ mourns like a dove without her mate, when he has left her. Ask, then, the question, what has driven Christ from thee? He hides his face behind the wall of thy sins. That wall may be built up of little pebbles, as easily as of great stones. The sea is made of drops; the rocks are made of grains: and the sea which divides thee from Christ may be filled with the drops of thy little sins; and the rock which has well nigh wrecked thy barque, may have been made by the daily working of the coral insects of thy little sins. If thou wouldst live with Christ, and walk with Christ, and see Christ, and have fellowship with Christ, take heed of “the little foxes that spoil the vines, for our vines have tender grapes.” Jesus invites you to go with him and take them. He will surely, like Samson, take the foxes at once and easily. Go with him to the hunting.