How we end up playin’ with gators

I have mentioned we sold our home and moved into a hotel.

We spent thirty days at LaQuinta and moved on to the next step in the path God’s purposed for us to take.

While at the hotel, we had frequent visitors.


alligator 3 by Ryan Somma via flickr

With a small lake behind our temporary home, and living near the swampy marsh, the gators congregated freely.

Upon our arrival, Camden and Caleb showed cautious appreciation for the strength, power and danger of these deadly predators.

Even with a protective barrier along most (but not all) of the lake’s border, they were vigilant and remained alert while fishing.

After a few days of acclimation, I noticed my boys becoming less guarded.  In fact, they began tossing food over the fence to feed Pablo and his reptilian pals.  (Pablo being the heftiest alligator and having been affectionately named by the hotel’s breakfast hostess who could muster the aquatic troops by shouting to them in Spanish).  Pablo and company would swim from the far side of the lake if they thought food was awaiting them on shore.

Toward the end of our stay, Caleb was catching fish just to feed to Pablo.  With a new affection for this dangerous creature, he’d toss snacks just in front of Pablo’s snout with a friendly gesture.

Here you go, buddy.

alligator by Ryan Somma


From predator to pal.

From adversary to amigo.

Within such a short span of time, my children had become desensitized to their scaly enemy.

A slow fade from guarded vigilance to cozy carelessness.

And as I observed this sliding recession, God showed me my attitude toward sin.

alligator 2 by Ryan Somma via flickr

Initially aware of the obvious dangers.

Alert and sensitive.

Then a gradual softening and a slight measure of compromise.

Tossing snacks over the barricade with terms of endearment.

Only consuming a crumb of concession.  It’s not like eating the whole loaf.  Right?

Morsels of immorality gradually amounting to feasting on a casserole of corrupt indulgences.

Therefore, be imitators of God, as dearly loved children. And walk in love, as the Messiah also loved us and gave Himself for us, a sacrificial and fragrant offering to God.

But sexual immorality and any impurity or greed should not even be heard of among you, as is proper for saints. Coarse and foolish talking or crude joking are not suitable, but rather giving thanks. For know and recognize this: Every sexually immoral or impure or greedy person, who is an idolater, does not have an inheritance in the kingdom of the Messiah and of God.

Let no one deceive you with empty arguments, for God’s wrath is coming on the disobedient because of these things.

Therefore, do not become their partners.

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light — for the fruit of the light results in all goodness, righteousness, and truth — discerning what is pleasing to the Lord.

Don’t participate in the fruitless works of darkness, but instead expose them.

(Ephesians 5:1-11)

8 thoughts on “How we end up playin’ with gators”

    1. Thankfully, there was a barricade separating most of the hotel from the lake. HOWEVER, my boys (being full of adventure) didn’t always stay within the boundaries. 😉

  1. Somehow I missed your post on selling your home… and have read it now. Both posts are powerful and encouraging. It’s helping me to see more clearly how God works… trying to look now at my living situation as a “God adventure”… waiting to see what he does:) Thanks for your words.

Your comments are treasured

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s