A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
After spending so long learning about dandelions, through science class with my little princess and the lessons that God has shown me as we went, I have become "tuned in" to them. Not that they are hard to miss, especially on the weekly nature walk my kids and I take. This past Friday I was sharing with my girls how God can be found in all of creation if we just open our eyes and look for Him. (Romans 1:20)
We talked about how God gives life when we stumbled upon a nest of goose eggs. When papa goose began hissing at us and attempting to scare us away we talked about how God is our protector Father. As we were walking, I saw this:
After all the talk of dandelions in my house, the girls passed it over. After all, it's just another dandelion and we have seen lots of those. I'm sure you realize that if it were just another dandelion I wouldn't be sharing with you about it right now. (wink wink) Pictured above is what is known as a false dandelion, one of several plants that looks like a dandelion, but isn't. Like dandelions, this plant is edible, but it is much less bitter than the flower it imitates, making it more palatable.
I know, in my last post I said I was done with dandelion lessons, but this one isn't really about dandelions.....it's about false dandelions. It is so easy to just give this little flower a glance, make an assumption and keep going. You could spend the rest of your life believing it was a dandelion, never taking the time to discover the truth. We are like that with our God sometimes too.
Flowers aren't the only think in the world that have imitators. In fact, we were warned that "many false prophets have gone out into the world". (1 John 4:1) These are the people that pretend to be of God, that share a twisted or false message of who He is and what He expects of us. Often the message they bring is more palatable to us than the truth.
"God wants you to be rich!"
"With God, you will never feel pain!"
"God will give you everything you desire!"
Sounds wonderful doesn't it. And it would be really easy to just accept what they say, after all they speak for God, right? They are a pastor/preacher/teacher/priest. God, however, calls us to dig a little deeper, to test and see if it really is truth. (1 John 4:1)
The best lie is one that has a little truth in it. The false dandelion is a "cousin" to the dandelion, they come from the same family, it's "kind of" a dandelion. And many of the messages from a false prophet are "kind of" true. Satan only needs to get you to turn away from God's truth, and being the father of lies, I would venture that he is pretty good at it. The danger there is that you could easily spend your entire life believing a lie and when you stand before Him one day you might hear Him say, "depart from me, I never knew you". (Matthew 7:21-23)
So how can you combat this? Spend time with God. Read His word. Talk with Him. After all, how easy would it be for a complete stranger to imitate your best friend convincingly? If you know God, the false dandelions are going to be really obvious!
Verses for further study: 2 Peter 2:1, Matthew 7:15, Matthew 24:24, 2 Corinthians 11:3-4, 2 Corinthians 11:13-14, Galatians 1:6-7