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THE DANGER OF PLAYING POSSUM
Tuesday, June 7, 2022 by Leona Choy

“A flying creature with a heavy body, a hunched-over stance, and feathers that often appear shaggy and looser than other birds.” Am I describing a stately, aging eagle before it goes through its late-in-life renewal process—a wonderful transformation that the Bible declares is available for believers in Jesus in our later years?

No. This is a word-snapshot definition of an entirely different bird trying to imitate the eagle with its rag-tag camouflage. I refer to Satan as the “fake eagle” aka vulture who tries to derail us from God's holy calling from walking a lifetime with the Lord. He is a deceiver, a destroyer, and a thief who is hovering about with his demon angels waiting for its prey to die—or at least to look as if it were dead.

I don't want to focus an undeserved spotlight on the devil. He is a messenger of darkness, although he was described as an angel of light in Heaven before his rebellion. Nevertheless, we need to know the extent of his powers according to the Scriptures. Satan does have limited control over Planet Earth for a season, but whatever influence he has on mankind is restricted by God's ultimate sovereignty.

The devil, our adversary, is referred to as the “prince of the power of the air” in Ephesians 2:2 and the “god of this world” in 2 Corinthians 4:4. Other translations describe him as “the ruler of the evil powers that are above the earth, in the domain of the air, of this present world, over the lower heavens, with power over things of the air, ruler of the spiritual powers in space.” But he is not a lawful prince! He is this world's god, not ours. He is not our King. We have one King, and his name is Jesus!

A characteristic of a vulture is that it eats dead things like road-kill, contrary to the eagle that waits to swoop down on the living fish in fresh ponds and lakes. A vulture circles its prey until it is sure that it's dead. We might call them “garbage collectors.” To have a vulture tattoo is a symbol of death.

Spiritually, the vulture is regarded as an unclean animal because it feeds on corpses. To have a vulture tattoo is a symbol of death. These birds are linked to the kingdom of death, and in the cultures where the custom is to leave deceased bodies at their disposal by vultures, it is a sign of exclusion from society and God. In Christianity, the vulture symbolizes judgment, shame, and a sick spiritual condition.

Jesus did not contradict or correct the devil when he bragged about his own powers during our Lord's temptation in the wilderness. His offer was legitimate. One translation describes him this way: “Satan is the commander of the powers in the unseen world, the dark ruler of the earthly realm who fills the atmosphere with his authority.” Nevertheless, Satan is a defeated, fallen angel whom God kicked out of Heaven with all those angels willing to follow his infernal insurrection against God. Remember, the devil is not divine or omnipotent.

Vulture-Satan's power is restricted to being effective on everyone who refuses to obey God, who does not respond to His truth. That doesn't include us who belong totally to the Lord. Satan “energizes the sons of disobedience,” but we are energized by the Holy Spirit within us. “You are from God, little children, and have conquered them because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:4)

The apostle Peter in 1 Peter 5:8 doesn't hesitate to warn us that our adversary the devil is “incessantly, always about, working against you, watching us, fiercely hungry, prowling about, stalking us, sneaking around, poised to pounce, hoping to catch you.” (in other translations)

I refuse to be Vulture-devil's victim. As a child of God, I delight in the assurance that all I need to do is “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee [fly away] from you” (James 4:7). I know my mandate—I am called to keep following the Lord closely whether I am weak or strong, young or old, ill or in health, through ups or downs, in season and out of season. The Lord expects me and enables me to be “steadfast and unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.” This is not retirement time. The return of Jesus Christ is so near, that we as His Bride must be ready.

The devil's favorite tool is discouragement. Even those of us who follow the Lord at times feel overwhelmed with discouragement and depression, and hopelessness. We act disheartened about our failing, weary, ancient, bedraggled “earth suit” bodies—with “feeble knees and hands hanging down.” I must shake myself into spiritual reality to see into the unseen and discern that this is an onslaught of deception from the liar Vulture and his flock of squawking underlings. I can't let them fool me!

I must resist the pseudo-eagle and his support flock of groupies! “So let God work his will in you. Shout a loud No! to the vulture-devil and watch him fly off” (James 4:7). Let's rejoice in the presence of the Lord who never leaves us or forsakes us whatever our feelings. Victory is ours. His grace is sufficient for us!

The devil, in the disguise of the vulture, attempts to lead God's children astray from God's path of life. He hunts us down when we're distancing ourselves from Christ’s spiritual ways, slipping backward in our pursuit of His high calling on our lives.

Even David, the king-composer of most of the Psalms, admits at times to have been “discouraged, sunk down, dejected, depressed, down in the dumps, crying the blues” in other translations of Psalm 42:5. By acting more dead than alive in Christ, instead of being vigorously energized by the Holy Spirit and pursuing God’s Kingdom business, we might be mistaken as the prey that the vulture-devil is watching for. We become targets for his destroy-and-kill agenda.

“Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The devil is poised to pounce and would like nothing better than to catch you napping [looking as if you were dead]. Keep your guard up. You’re not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It’s the same with Christians all over the world. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ—eternal and glorious plans they are!—will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, he does!” (MSG 1 Peter 5:8-11)

  

It is dangerous for us in whom Christ is living, to play possum, to act as if we are dead! The fake eagle, the devil disguised as a vulture or buzzard, is watching for us. If we play dead, we are his target!

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Comments

Carole McKinney From Now from Enunclaw At 6/9/2022 12:39:23 AM

Thank you for the encouragement for those of us who are no longer spry, young chicks! God isn't finished with us yet and neither should we be finished with our work for Him!!

Reply by: Leona Choy

You have moved, my friend. Please write and tell me about your adjustment.

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MY CLAP OFFERING
Leona Choy
3/8/2020

ONE DOLLAR DAFFODIL
Leona Choy
3/7/2020

BOUND BY AN INVISIBLE THREAD
Leona Choy
3/4/2020

NOT SILENCED
Leona Choy
2/26/2020

BEING OWLISH ABOUT WISDOM
Leona Choy
2/24/2020

"In the beginning..." before GOOGLE
Leona Choy
2/22/2020

PULLED FROM THE BRINK
Leona Choy
2/20/2020

APPLE OF HIS EYE
Leona Choy
2/9/2020

SINGING HER WAY HOME
Leona Choy
1/31/2020

EATIN' SHORTBREAD
Leona Choy
1/24/2020

PLATFORM, PODIUM, PULPIT OR PEDESTAL?
Leona Choy
1/17/2020

BUCKET LIST AGAIN?
Leona Choy
1/12/2020

IN SEARCH OF A MAKEOVER
Leona Choy
12/31/2019

SEASONAL SAG
Leona Choy
12/30/2019

THE MYSTERY OF TIME
Leona Choy
12/28/2019

2020 MY RENEWED EAGLE YEAR
Leona Choy
12/26/2019

Post Surgery Report
Leona Choy
12/3/2019

SURGERY ENCORE
Leona Choy
11/23/2019

“You Have the Right to Remain Silent”
Leona Choy
10/31/2019

WHO IS SHAKING MY TREE?
Leona Choy
10/30/2019

WHO IS THE BOSS OF ME?
Leona Choy
10/15/2019

LORD, MOVE MY MOUNTAIN!
Leona Choy
10/13/2019

ANOTHER WAITING ROOM
Leona Choy
10/11/2019

DON'T BE SHEEPISH
Leona Choy
10/10/2019

THE VALUE OF SELF-TALK
Leona Choy
9/28/2019

LASER PRAYER
Leona Choy
9/27/2019

THANKS FOR THE MEMORY
Leona Choy
9/12/2019

CARRY ME, FATHER
Leona Choy
9/5/2019

MY PERSONAL SPIRITUAL WORKOUT
Leona Choy
9/4/2019

PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
Leona Choy
9/1/2019

Lessons from My Cup
Leona Choy
8/20/2019

STRAW & THE CAMEL'S BACK
Leona Choy
8/7/2019

BECOMING MORE "FRUITY"
Leona Choy
7/10/2019

CREATIVE ENCOUNTERS
Leona Choy
7/3/2019

PITCHING IT RIGHT
Leona Choy
6/30/2019

“WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU GROW UP?”
Leona Choy
6/25/2019

34580 and COUNTING
Leona Choy
6/18/2019

MOUNTAINS AND MOLEHILLS
Leona Choy
6/14/2019

CHEERLEADING
Leona Choy
6/6/2019

HANDS ON THE PLOW
Leona Choy
5/22/2019

WAITING FOR GRADUATION DAY
Leona Choy
5/17/2019

I THINK BOOKS
Leona Choy
5/13/2019

ONLY TALK WITH YOUR MOUTH FULL!
Leona Choy
5/4/2019

HO-HUM FAITH
Leona Choy
4/18/2019

BREATHTAKING THOUGHTS
Leona Choy
4/7/2019

TOO MUCH ON MY PLATE?
Leona Choy
3/31/2019

EARTH SUIT vs SPACE SUIT: Increasing Tension
Leona Choy
3/4/2019

AVOIDING A SPIRITUAL "OOPS!"
Leona Choy
3/1/2019

PURSUING WISDOM
Leona Choy
2/19/2019

A THORNY MATTER
Leona Choy
2/15/2019

A SOMEWHAT GRUMPY CHAT WITH GOD
Leona Choy
2/12/2019

A FISH STORY
Leona Choy
2/8/2019

LET'S EAT NOODLES TOGETHER!
Leona Choy
1/21/2019

SATISFIED--A SECRET TO SHARE
Leona Choy
1/11/2019

STILL RUNNING
Leona Choy
12/29/2018

RESISTANCE TO ASSISTANCE
Leona Choy
12/6/2018

CHALLENGE OF THE FOURTH QUARTER
Leona Choy
11/26/2018

KEEPING A TRADITION
Leona Choy
11/15/2018

PUBLISHING FUND PROGRESS
Leona Choy
11/5/2018

"GOING STEADY" WITH MY "SUGAR CANE"
Leona Choy
11/3/2018

A SHOUT-OUT FOR A NEW BUTTERFLY
Leona Choy
10/31/2018

THANKSGIVING IN OCTOBER
Leona Choy
10/7/2018

REPEAT OFFENDERS
Leona Choy
9/30/2018

SHINING WHEN YOUR BATTERY IS LOW
Leona Choy
9/21/2018

I DESERVE IT...DESERVE IT NOT....
Leona Choy
9/13/2018

WHAT'S IN A NAME?
Leona Choy
9/10/2018

WAITING FOR GOD'S DUE TIME
Leona Choy
9/3/2018

STONES AND COVERUPS AND HOLY EARS
Leona Choy
8/31/2018

IT'S ALL ABOUT SHOES
Leona Choy
8/29/2018

THE HOLY SPIRIT IS MY CELL TOWER
Leona Choy
8/27/2018

REJUVENATION GOD'S WAY
Leona Choy
8/17/2018

STUCK IN THE MUD?
Leona Choy
8/13/2018

TWINKLE TWINKLE LITTLE STAR
Leona Choy
8/8/2018

WHEN'S A GOOD TIME TO "EXULT"?
Leona Choy
7/30/2018

Survey For the Calendar-Challenged
Leona Choy
7/25/2018

Destiny Decisions
Leona Choy
7/19/2018

BEDROOM SLIPPERS OR HIKING BOOTS?
Leona Choy
7/18/2018

Hurrah for the Prepper Bridesmaids!
Leona Choy
7/13/2018

THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
Leona Choy
7/10/2018

BARNACLES
Leona Choy
6/5/2018