It was abrupt and unexpected…..

This time of year it is dark when I am commuting to work.  It is also the time of year when deer seem to feel compelled to cross the road at the most inopportune time.  So there I was this morning, barely exceeding the speed limit, when abruptly and completely unexpected, a deer crossed the road.

Sudden and sharp intake of breath, heart rate elevates drastically, foot flies to the brake pressing hard and fast, and thankfully crisis averted.

Awareness is defined as the quality or state of being aware.  The definition of the word aware is having or showing realization, perception, or knowledge (i.e. be aware of the danger).

Part of driving defensively is awareness, or being aware of our surroundings and potential threats.  Whether it’s a car or a deer, the sudden arrival of something in your path as you are hurtling down the highway is cause for alarm and sudden action.  The ability to successfully evade the threat while driving is something that comes with time and practice.

Let’s now apply this defensive strategy to another part of our lives.  How much practice have you put into being aware of your surroundings?  How much time have you spent thinking through the possible scenarios that can happen to you in your daily life?  Have you spent time educating yourself about the evils of the world?  Have you refused to acknowledge danger when something felt ‘off’?  Have you put barriers into place that will delay or prevent an illegal and/or violent action toward you and your family?

Complacency is one of our biggest challenges as we go about the daily chore of living.  Being unaware, uneducated about evil, certain that it always happens to the other person are all ingredients for disaster.

This verse really, really spoke to me about paying attention to all things:

The shepherds are senseless and do not inquire of the Lord;
so they do not prosper and all their flock is scattered.  Jeremiah 10:21 (NIV)

I interpret this verse to tell me to use my brain, to use and trust all of the intuitive tools God has equipped me with in order to protect my flock.  By paying attention to what is happening around me, I can take steps to prevent my flock from becoming scattered.

That level of preparedness may well come in handy when that deer decides to cross the road in front of you.

Tend your flock well Shepherdess.





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