Did I mention to you the unique experience we had the other day? My wife and I were sitting at the dining room table when I thought I heard some strange but yet somewhat familiar sounds. I turned down the volume on the Pandora station we were listening to and got up and opened the sliding door to the back deck. Then, as I concentrated on the sound, I turned to my wife and asked: “Is that what I think it is?” I even turned to the dog lying next to my wife on the floor and asked her the same question as her ears stood at attention!
You know what? It sounded like an old fashioned Fox Hunt that you might see in the movies! In fact, for a moment there, I thought we were on the set of the old 1961, 2 part episode of the Disneyland TV show entitled “The Horse Masters” starring Annette Funicello and Tommy Kirk. This movie was a favorite of our kids when they were young and follows a group of young adults as they go through a 16 week horsemanship course at a prestigious riding school in England. At the end of the course the participants are given the privilege of entering into a Fox Hunt with a famous pack of award winning hounds.
And that is what it sounded like right outside our own backyard! Our yard backs up to a family estate of natural woods. Our property line actually extends about six feet beyond the see through wire fence and blends right into the other property. As I started to walk out to the fence line, I got to see the hounds running through the trees sounding off for everyone to hear. That everyone included our Australian Shepherd Mandie who ran to the fence and joined in with the barking with her own loud but slightly higher pitched bark. It was actually kind of fun to listen to them and catch the occasional glimpse of the pack chasing whatever it was they were chasing.
I read that modern day Fox Hunts in America chase not only foxes but coyotes or other such critters and that they do not end in the kill. But end once the hunted has been accounted for by running into a hole in the ground, called an earth. The dogs finally changed directions as they got closer to our fence and headed northwest past our home into the unpopulated areas beyond us, as our house is the last home on our side of our rural neighborhood.
That incident got me to thinking about how both the pack of dogs and the fox (if that is what they were chasing) were doing what is naturally inside of them in the midst of all the frenzy that was going on. I’m sure that the hunted animal was using all its natural instincts and inclinations to run and hide, while the dogs were running in a pack and doing what they have been bred for generations to do… to hunt! Philippians 2:7 tells us that Jesus “made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the FORM of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.” (KJV) The commentary I am currently reading “Be Joyful” by Dr. Warren Wiersbe defines the word translated “FORM” as “The outward expression of the inward nature.” Thayer’s says that it is “The form by which a person or thing strikes the vision.”
It is like the animals on the hunt the other day, when push came to shove and the action got a little frenzied, they reverted to what was in them. The dogs chased and the fox ran for its life because in the heat of the moment, that is the only thing they knew to do.
Hummm… kind of sounds like the way you and I react in the frenzied activities and moments of our lives… doesn’t it? There are times when we don’t even have time to think about what to do and we simply react! I’ve always held that at times like that… the real man or women on the inside comes out of us!
I’ve seen it repeatedly with the way people have responded to my wife’s condition. Many have instantly stepped up to bat and reach out to her, while some reacted totally opposite to the way they normally carry themselves. Our scripture says that Jesus gave up His heavenly reputation and took on the FORM of a servant. My commentary states that “Jesus did not pretend to be a servant; He was not an actor playing a role. He actually was a servant. This was the true expression of His innermost nature.”
When you look through the four gospels you’ll quickly notice that Jesus always served others… not the other way around! He was at the beck and call of all kinds of people… the good, the bad, those mixed up, those who were living what we would consider as the wrong kind of lifestyle, and those who totally disagreed with his theology. He lived His Zoë infused life as a servant to all… independent of other’s fears!
One thing I have had to learn (sometimes the hard way…) throughout these last few years is to become more self-confident in who I am as a Christian and as a man “In Christ” in order to successfully assist my wife… in spite of others! When push comes to shove and life gets a little frenzied, I am relying and expecting… more and more… on what is inside of me to rise up and take over!
Are you confident on what is inside of you being able to do the same? I’d like to hear about it! If you’re not confident about the inside you… the real you, then I would suggest you bone up on the love of Christ and what His Word says about the real you! You might be a little surprised at what you find!
Have a great weekend, and as you do, keep asking yourself… “What or Who am I expecting to come up from inside of me when life gets a little frenzied?”