A Messy Raccoon

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. From 1 Peter 2:9

This weekend we had some friends stay with us. The husband was eating breakfast with my children and told them a story to illustrate the importance of sharing God’s word with those around us. I was listening to him while I made my own breakfast. It was about a bear who finds some honey in the woods. There is more honey than he can eat on his own so he shares it with all the other animals in the woods. All the animals have to sacrifice something or be inconvenienced in some way so they can transport the honey back to their portion of the woods and share it with their families. Then he got to the part about the raccoon. He tells the bear that he always keeps his hands clean and washes them all the time, but he knows the honey is so important and so sweet that he will let himself get all sticky and messy so his family can have some of this honey.

I can’t get that image out of my head. I felt like God was asking, “Are you willing to get messy so others can experience Me?”. I feel like I am a lot like that raccoon. I spend a lot of emotional energy keeping up appearances. I try to keep up with my house and try to look like I have it together with my kids. But what if God is asking me to be messy for His sake? What if it is time to let my guard down and sacrifice my comfort so my friends can see who Jesus is through me? I suppose my neighbors don’t really need to see more of me, with my raccoon “clean” hands…They need to see more of Jesus and experience His sweet love.

Jesus, I repent of trying to present more of ‘me’ to the world. I keep trying to draw attention to myself, and look like I have something to offer. I am sorry. I need you to change me. Remind me how sweet your love is. Open my eyes to who around me is desperate and hungry and show me how to bring You to them. May I declare Your praises to everyone I encounter today.


erikaDiving In is our online mid-week devotional. It jumps into the message from Sunday and takes us a little deeper. Take a moment to slow down from your busy day, and hear from the Holy Spirit. We re-post every Wednesday. You can follow along by clicking the +Follow button in the bottom-right corner of your screen. This week Diving In is written by Erika Thornton (Pastor Jonathan’s wife).