Pay attention to the little foxes

Posted on February 04, 2020 in: Articles

By Dave Coe

Certified Facilitator

Catholic Vision for Leading Like Jesus Encounter

Catch us the foxes, the little foxes that damage the vineyards; for our vineyards are in

bloom!  Song of Songs 2:15

Why pay attention to the little foxes instead of the big ones?

Because those “little foxes” – sins -- are progressively sneaky. They have a way of getting under our protective fences, eating the roots of our Christian core values, and eventually killing our entire Vine of Values©.

At times they also get under the skin of those we love and those with whom we are trying to build loving Christian relationships.

We cannot afford to say, “That’s just the way I am.”

Blessed John of Vercelli, Dominican priest, Master General of the Dominicans and founder of the Holy Name Society (1205-1283) knew this all too well. He warned:

Watch the little things. He who grows careless in little things, little by little falls. He who does not push himself to make progress goes backward.        

King David was an imperfect man who God called “a man after His own heart.” After falling by committing adultery with Bathsheba and then having her husband murdered to cover up his sin, David finally repents, acknowledging his grievous sin and begging God’s forgiveness. After that he continued to pray:

Behold, you desire true sincerity;

and secretly you teach me wisdom.

Cleanse me with hyssop, that I may be pure;

wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.  Psalm 51:8-9

The Jerusalem Bible tells us that the wisdom David was praying for is that which will enable him to also discover his hidden faults, of which he was unaware. We, too, should pray for such wisdom, for we all have faults of which we are unaware but which nevertheless cause harm to ourselves and others.

These are the so-called “little foxes” that lead to our going backwards or worse.

Yes, we need to acknowledge our serious sins, plead for forgiveness and resolve never to commit them again. But we also need to ask for the wisdom to become aware of our little sins so we can resolve not to commit them again either.

Dear Reader, please know that I am praying for you. My prayer for you is found in Ephesians 3:14-21. May our Lord continue to fill you with His encouraging love as you keep catching and chasing the “little foxes” in your life. of

            - Dave

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