The Tale of the Cannibal Squirrel

Yesterday, I witnessed an amazing thing. I wish I had a camera so that you could see it. Buddy, my dog, was begging to go outside, and as it was a perfect sunny morning, I stepped out onto the deck with him. He started to bark at two squirrels crossing an electrical line behind our house. One of the squirrels scolded him profusely, the other laid flat on the wire, tail hanging limp. Buddy lost interest. I did not. The first squirrel began pacing away from and toward the still squirrel. After several minutes, I ran in to get my phone and prepared to call animal control, suspecting that something was wrong with the rodent who refused to move. When I came back they were both gone. My eyes followed the line to the tree where I knew the squirrels had their nest. The healthy squirrel was jumping from line to tree with the other squirrel of equal size in its mouth.

I had been praying when all of this happened. I was asking God for direction because I was preparing for the Write To Publish Conference and was feeling frightened and unprepared…stuck in the middle of many tasks not sure which direction to take. I found myself frozen, much like the flattened squirrel, tail hanging limp. After I received my new job, I felt uncertain about where this left my writing career and I didn’t know whether I should move on toward the goal, or forget the whole thing.

As I continued to research squirrel behavior for this post I found several disturbing articles. I thought that my squirrel was being friendly, and helping his fellow furry friend. What I found instead was horrific! The truth is that squirrels are cannibals, and the little beast was carrying the other squirrel to its demise. I thought that the horrible noises I had heard were the healthy squirrel crying for his injured companion. Instead, I found out that the screams were from the injured squirrel being eaten alive. I felt sick. I assumed that I was getting a beautiful revelation about how we need to help each other when one is too frightened to continue alone, and instead I had a tale of a cannibal squirrel.

But then, I thought about that paralyzed squirrel. It would not move forward. It would not fight for the ground that it had conquered. I think that I can tend to be like him, and when I let the enemy terrify me that way, I allow him to destroy me. The truth is that God has equipped us. He has equipped us to move forward. When we look back, we become like Lot’s wife and we are destroyed. Moving forward keeps us from being eaten alive by our fears and by our enemies.

The fact of the matter is: I haven’t finished either of my novels. I have very little published. But…Phil. 3:13 says,

I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead…

What lies directly ahead for me?  The Write To Publish Conference.  So, I will spend the bulk of my days this next week preparing for what lies ahead.  What is that “one thing” that I need to focus on?

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Jesus, the author.  Jesus is an author!  He knows what it is to have an incomplete work set before Him, because that incomplete work is me!  Jesus, the finisher.  He knows how to finish what He has started, and He will help me to do the same.  He finished for the joy that was set before Him.  I will finish for the same purpose, the joy of completion.  Because it is this joy that makes the suffering of the journey worth it.

I wonder what would have happened if the injured squirrel would have pressed forward to what was ahead instead of stopping dead in his tracks?  I am determined to keep moving, even if it is at a crawl.  I focus on moving forward with the tasks that I know He has placed in my hand, and because He is an author and a finisher, I can be too!



21 thoughts on “The Tale of the Cannibal Squirrel

  1. Wow! I did not know that about squirrels. They look like such sweet, fun-loving little creatures! And I’ll pray for you as you move toward your mission to write a book and please keep us informed of how the conference goes, kd!

  2. Who knew you could learn such a wonderful lesson from cannibal squirrels? Just goes to show that God can use anything to get our attention and teach us something:)
    And your post was very encouraging to me this morning. I feel as if I’ve been crawling at a snails pace lately. Thank you for reminding me to keep truckin’ along, with HIM! 🙂

  3. ms. KD, funny (no, not really) what God can teach you through looking at crazy squirrels, especially when you are listening to the Holy Spirit. God bless your walk forward. God told Abraham where to go, but that’s all he knew. He found out the rest as he took the first step and kept moving forward.

    you go, girl!

  4. Oh my, just one more reason for me to hate squirrels. They are such a nuisance in my part of the world. Keep the faith Kim. I pray God will speak to you with clarity as you engage in the conference. Can’t wait to hear about it afterward.

  5. I had no idea….Oh my. Yet another lesson learned from that pesky rodent.

    Praying for you as you listen to Your Author, Kim. God loves to speak through you. I have no doubt He will take You up on the offer. Looking forward to hearing what He has for you!

  6. omg…i did not know that about squirrels…i love squirrels too…now i know…and i am afraid…smiles…i am glad you were able to find inspiration in it though…you know often we think of large steps as progress but its just a matter of small consistant movement that gets us places…

  7. Wow… I didn’t know that either… I honestly thought they only ate nuts and some plants. How horrible!

    Loved the way you wrote this… thank you for your encouragement.

    Now if I can get the image out of my head…

  8. Wow, I was like you all ready for a wonderful lesson on how we help each other when we are down. I love watching squirrels but I must confess I will feel a bit differently about them now!! Good lesson, I have been like that paralyzed squirrel many times in my life! Lori

  9. I have never liked squirrels and now I have another reason not to like them. I’m grateful for the good story from the horrific squirrel experience. 🙂

  10. AHHHHH!!! The cannibal squirrel? ARE YOU SERIOUS!? That is freaky. Isn’t it funny how God speaks to us in so many ways, the bizarre squirrel ways included?
    I really liked the part about Jesus the Author, very encouraging. Keep moving!

  11. So happy to find you here k.d! Somehow I lost track of you on my blogging trails and am absolutely delighted to find you again! I hope you have a wonderful time at the Conference. As we press towards Him things WILL all come together, in His time. God Bless You, Elizabeth.

  12. wow. What a wonderful writer you are. I loved this post. And I will be praying for you as you continue to move forward seeking what God has for you. As you prepare for the Write to publish conference. I myself was greatly encouraged by this post. Many blessings
    jenn Hand

  13. Learned something ugh new today! Indeed, we need to purposely move forward and ignore the things that keep us from moving forward. Sometimes the devil is able to put distractions on our path that we allow to divert us. :^( I know this from experience and it is sad sad sad!

  14. Oh my! I had no idea. Thank you for sharing your insights into what God taught you through this though. Standing strong on the Rock when the enemy attacks is our calling. May your day be filled with delight, ~ linda

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