Last week a 29-year old American tourist was mauled by a lion while touring a lion park in South Africa.
As I watched the news video recounting the tragedy, I saw instructions and warnings that had been clearly posted around the lion park. Rules to protect the visiting public. Rules that included keeping car windows completely up at all times.
But the woman in the news report ignored the warnings and rolled her window down anyway.
She only wanted to get a good photograph. What’s the harm with that?
But before she had time to react, a lioness jumped through the window and mauled her to death.
This woman was not some fictional character you read about in a book or see in a movie. She was real.
She had a real family and real friends. She had dreams and ambitions and a heart that beat for adventure. She was full of life.
Until she rolled her window down.
And because she didn’t listen to the warnings, she lost her life.
In one breath her dreams were gone. In one minute her life was over.
1 Peter 5:8 says to, “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”(NLT)
These words in 1 Peter sound scary to me, but to be truthful, because I’ve never had any dealings with lions, I’ve found it hard to grasp the gravity of this verse.
That is, until now.
We are all visitors in this world. Stopping in for a while on our way to eternity. Like the instructions and warnings in the lion park, the instructions and warnings in the Bible are meant for our protection while we’re here.
Friends, there’s no mistaking, Satan can look beautiful. And oh how tempting it is to roll the window down for a closer glimpse of something good. A dress, a man, a drink, a look.
We think, what can it hurt, right?
And there’s always a good reason – acceptance, love, fulfillment.
Be careful friends. Keep your guard up.
The story of what happened to the young American tourist is horrific. My heart goes out to all those who knew and loved her.
I’ll never look at the verse in 1 Peter the same way again.
It’s a wake up call for me. Maybe for you as well?
Psalm 19:7 “The instructions of the LORD are perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple.” (NLT)