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If you enjoy my blog and would like to contact me, you may reach me at this email:

Some of my stories are published in:
A Cup of Comfort Devotional for Mothers and Daughters (Adams Media, 2009)
Chicken Soup: What I Learned from the Dog (2009)
Love is a Flame (Bethany House, 2010)
Extraordinary answers to Prayer (Guideposts, 2010)
Love is a Verb (Bethany House, 2011)
Big Dreams from Small Spaces (Group Publishing, 2012)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Uninvited

A couple of nights ago I heard some strange noises coming from the upstairs bathroom. As I mentioned in Monday's blog,  I'm frequently awake in the middle of the night, so the "swishy, swishy" noises upstairs caught my attention right away.
I crept upstairs and listened intently. Yep, those noises are definitely coming from the toilet. Without turning on the bathroom light, I tiptoed to the toilet and lifted the lid.
Agh! I dropped the lid and it banged shut. Something was definitely inside the toilet bowl.
Okay, I thought with a frown, I didn't get a good enough look at whatever the thing was in my toilet. So now I'm going to have to lift the lid one more time.
Carefully and slowly I lifted the toilet lid just a few inches. And there it was.
A squirrel. A wet, tired, scared little ground squirrel, clinging to the side of the bowl, panting from its desperate attempt to climb up and escape its watery prison.
"Bruce!" I called several times until I woke him up. "I need you. We've got something in out toilet. Please bring a towel."
Bruce arrived with the towel. I used it to grab the little critter and wrap it securely. Then Bruce took it downstairs, out the front door, and released it in the yard.
"How in the world?" He said when he returned.
"I don't have a clue." But after I thought about it, I realized the only way the squirrel could have gotten inside a closed toilet was to have swum up through our pipes. Ew!

As I've mentioned in earlier posts, lots of uninvited critters have gotten into our mountain house lately: birds, a chipmunk, an occasional mouse, a cat, a raccoon --almost, and now the squirrel.
Some of those unwanted guests could not have been prevented. (Who would have thought a squirrel could swim up pipes into an upstairs bath?)
Some come inside because they're looking for shelter, or scraps of food. Or by accident.

I thought about the unwanted things that come into my mind and heart sometimes.
Is it because they've wandered inside by accident? Hardly ever.
Most of the time, my unwanted guests arrive because I've left the "door" open.
Or the "door" has been unguarded.
The solution to preventing the destructive thoughts is almost the same as preventing critters from entering my house:
Keep "doors" and "windows". . .  
my eyes
my ears,
my unchecked tongue,my loose, undisciplined, unrestrained thoughts. . .
check for any "holes". . . 
my old patterns of acting and responding. . .
 where something might creep through and begin, in the undetected hours, to do damage.

"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." (Proverbs 4:23)

"Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord;
keep watch over the door of my lips." (Psalm 141:3)


  1. My goodness! A squirrel in the toilet! Who would've thought....

  2. Great analogy, Dena, as usual. I'm waiting for the post about an elk coming into your house. (Just kidding :-)).