The emergency text came in all caps just as we were going to bed: “THERE IS A BAT IN YOUR HOUSE!” Our houseguests were in the kitchen getting a pre-bed snack when the creature did a fly-by on them.
Some things can wait… changing a light bulb… fixing a door hinge… cleaning up dog poop (okay that really can’t wait)… but a bat in the house forces us to immediate action. I did what any sitcom-watching, movie-watching well-trained bat-expeller would do–I put on a hat and gloves and grabbed a broom and bucket. The little fuzzy thing was perched over the mantle close to the ceiling. My wife immediately cleared all valuable and breakable things off the mantle. One of our spectator houseguests asked if I was going to kill baby batman. She is a missionary to India, so she probably has a lot of experience in compassionate diplomacy in such matters as saving the lives of potentially rabies-carrying critters. “This bat is gonna die,” I smugly replied as I pulled my collar around my neck and secretly asked God to not let me die in the process.
I took my first swing at the blood sucker and missed, causing it to begin to circle through the house. Those looking on screamed and ducked for cover. As I kept swinging wildly at the menace (and missing), the Spirit of Wisdom came upon one of the laughing, shrieking on-lookers: “Why don’t we open the door and see if it will fly out?” Genius!
With the front door wide open (which is probably how the flying vermin had entered in the first place), the bat flew out. Success! Nothing broken! Nobody bitten on the neck and turning into a …never mind.
Just like having a bat in our house should prompt an immediate action, when spiritual vermin (sin, unforgiveness, resentment, porn, addictions, hatred, anger, lust, etc.) enter into us, we must take immediate action. Paul said to flee youthful lusts; he didn’t say take your time and see how it goes. He said to FLEE! RUN!
As we turn to Jesus and ask for His help with spiritual intruders that can destroy our lives, He will provide the grace and power to make them fly right out the door. His grace is sufficient for us.
“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will make the way of escape…” (1 Corinthians 10:13)