How do we get trapped? Why? And how do we escape falling into traps and escaping those to which we have already succumbed?
Traps are based on deception. The mouse thinks the cheese in the mouse trap is a free cheese platter. There is no such thing as free – read “Life After Google.” Indians trap ducks by floating pumpkins down the river. At first, the ducks get a fright and fly away, but gradually, they get used to the floating pumpkins and don’t move away. Then the Indians hollow the pumpkins out, make eye holes in them, put them over their heads, and float down the river. The duck sees another pumpkin until the Indian is near enough to seize the duck by the legs.
The traps are always stronger than their victims. The rat can’t escape the trap, and the Indians are stronger than the ducks.
Traps are based on greed. Monkeys are trapped when a calabash is hollowed out and tied to a tree. Then some delicious snacks are put into the hole in the calabash, and the monkeys arrive, smell the snacks, put their little hands into the small hole in the calabash and grab a handful of sweets. Their fist is too big to pull out of the calabash, so they trap themselves, and they will stay there until the savages come and kill them for food. Many people died at the hands of savages or saw their wives and daughters raped in South Africa instead of immigrating and escaping because they were making such a lot of money and they didn’t want to give it up.
Traps are based on conceit. Ever heard a drug addict or alcoholic tell you, “I thought it wouldn’t happen to me?” Many drug addicts wanted to look “cool” to their friends.
Traps are based on tradition and what everyone else is doing. How do you trap caterpillars? Caterpillars follow each other in long lines to food. When they find food, they disperse and eat, then they line up again and off they go. If you put them in a circle around a flowerpot, they will go round and round and eventually they will die from exhaustion. People like to “keep up with the Joneses,” follow trends, conform, follow customs, habits, and policy.
Put a frog in a pot of cold water on the cooker and heat the water by half a degree Fahrenheit every five minutes. The frog doesn’t jump out because he’s too comfortable – His condition is never critical enough to cause him to act – the trouble is gradual – there’s no urgency -just like us Westerners who allow our governments to destroy us by importing the worst kinds of people under the guise of kindness and “refugees.” We’re settled in our way of living. We put things off. Well, eventually, that poor frog cooks to death.
Traps are like treadmills – you walk or run but you never get anywhere; there’s a perception of results, of accomplishment, but in fact, you stay exactly where you are. We keep doing it just because we started.
Traps can focus us on the trivial instead of what’s important. Instead of checking our priorities and reevaluating, we end up ignoring the very things that need our attention to please others, like working for your club or church and neglecting your own family.
Traps are based on timidity. You hate your job or your business, but you’re afraid to leave. Eventually, you die of a heart attack. We deny Christ because we’re too weak not to be politically correct and you walk in lock step with the Cultural Marxist agenda.
Religious traps: Apart from Galatianism and Legalism, many think that if we pray and follow God’s rules as we understand them, we won’t have any troubles, and then when troubles come, we think “religion doesn’t work.” We ask, “If God loves us, why do some many suffer? Why do good people suffer?” That’s because we have been misled. God promises peace and strength in times of suffering, He doesn’t say we won’t suffer. He uses and allows suffering for greater purposes, He doesn’t intervene in our choices, and we can’t bribe God with good works.
Cults use fear-based, carrot-and-stick Legalism and Galatianism to rob people of their money, time and freedom until their priorities change from themselves and their own families into serving the cult and strangers. This is the cancer of Altruism and Collectivism.
So we see that there are many kinds of traps, designed especially for our weaknesses, our preferences, our lives. And we all get trapped in various traps at different times. Some traps are deadly, and often, one trap leads to another, for example, one less dangerous drug leads to more dangerous drugs and finally addiction, then financial ruin, loss of friends and family, and death.
Many times, we get trapped because we see no way out of a desperate situation. The person in financial difficulty resorts to gambling and gambling is a giant trap. The person who can’t handle his depression or grief resorts to drugs and alcohol. The person who has difficulties, instead of dealing with them, resorts to distraction in illicit extramarital affairs or buying things he can’t really afford.
How do we escape? How do we break free? How do we avoid falling into more traps? A bird is a symbol of freedom, isn’t it? If the branch the bird is sitting on breaks, it doesn’t fall to the earth, it simply flies away and finds another branch. Don’t panic. If you are enduring an emotional winter, hold on, stop worrying – I have good news for you.
Psalm 124: “We have escaped like a bird, out of the fowler’s snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped. Our help is in the name of the Lord.”
God, our Maker, has provided us with a clear path to peace, joy, happiness, and a good life, a happy family, and prosperity. And He clearly shows us how to deal with all difficulties and suffering. It’s all to be found in your Bible, with thousands of true stories to illustrate every and any situation we could possibly find ourselves in and the solutions to your problems.
When your relationship with God is strong, and when you join a church that has a balanced view of law and grace and teaches the truth and the correct interpretation of God’s way, you can avoid traps, you can escape traps, and you can help others do the same. We don’t have to stay in the traps. We can be free.
Stop worrying. Read Psalm 91.