Monkeys are generally considered intelligent creature according to Wikipedia. They are agile and they can swing on trees easily. Monkeys can be tree- dwelling although there are species that live primarily on the ground, such as baboons. So my topic “how to catch an (intelligent) monkey and beware of falling on your own (self-made) traps” sounds like an oxymoron. I suspect we sometimes behave like monkeys. Some people believe we evolved from monkeys.
I wonder about the so called “missing link” as my pastor defended his faith to a guy who angrily insisted that all humans come from monkeys. The debate went on and on. Finally exasperated , my pastor blurted out meekly “Okay, okay no problem. If you firmly believe your family descended from monkeys and gorilla then so be it. Just leave me alone. As for me and my family we are all humans we came from Adam and Eve”. Problem solved, but please don’t use the same approach to evolutionist.
WAYS OF CATCHING MONKEY
I watched on You Tube how to catch monkey in India showing a man tricks the monkey with food then he grabs its tail. Then the man rotates like a “trumpo” while holding the monkey by the tail. He releases the monkey in the air. The centrifugal force throws it away to a net sack held by another man. Presto, the monkey is caught inside the net.
Meanwhile hunters in Africa make a hole on a trunk of a tree or hardened clay as shown in the video below (downloaded from You Tube). The hole is just large enough for a monkey to insert its hand. The hunter put nuts, or some fruits inside the hole enticing a monkey to see these baits.
The monkey inserts its hand through the hole to get the food. But with the prize in its grasp, the monkey cannot pull its hand back when it grabs the bait. The hunter then ties a rope to the monkey’s head. Caught by surprise. Would not let go of its prize, so it becomes trapped. The idiot gives up its freedom, not willing to let go while holding its prized possession. The monkey probably acting out of instinct doesn’t have the ability to recognize the danger of falling into a trap.
So why monkey is considered intelligent? Humans are intelligent too and we thought we can avoid falling into a trap. We have the ability to recognize and understand the danger of holding to things that can hurt us. Fire or a hot rod burns us. We know things that render us ineffective, stale or stagnant in our growth. Many times we know and predict consequences of our actions but we’re blinded by the pleasures we get from them. Or we have not settled in our heart the right convictions prior to the incident. No values. No principles. We will just cross that bridge when we get there.
Beni Walchli, a friend from Gleanings gave a powerful challenge after sharing this monkey story. ” You don’t have God’s blessings because you are stuck or absorbed in many things.” he said. Some areas in our life are off limits to God and we don’t want to surrender such. Maybe this part is okay for the Lord to touch but this one He cannot touch, its none of His business. We go to a full day concert or a football game but gripe with the 1-1/2 hour church service. We spend hundreds of dollar in shopping yet regret the 10 or 20 bucks on the offering.
TRAPS WE CREATE
Remember Haman, in the book of Esther 7:10, he fell into his own trap when he designed a gallow to hang a Jew Mordecai who refused to bow to him. The King in the end, commanded that Haman be impaled on the pole he had set up for Mordecai.
Most of the traps in our life are those we create ourselves. We hold on to things that don’t serve us well. Trapped because we buy things we want instead of things we need. Credit bondage? I like this definition. Credit card is buying things with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.
We also hold on to grudges and past mistakes. We grumble and whine. Clinging hard to the privilege of being right. Not to let go of anger and resentment, we just can’t forgive. Habit bondage? We call it addiction. We tend to eat, drink or smoke a lot when stressed out. Those things may result to being obese, etc. Pleasurable acts becomes habit. Then later become addictive behavior. Whereas those painful past in which we dwell builds up like callouses isolating us from mending relationships.
We attach ourselves to material things that are of little value; and oftentimes we put our possessions ahead of our own well-being. We just can’t let go of things or of our evil desires. Not realizing that our relationships with people are more important than things. Let us examine those things that we treasure or they might become a trap that hinders our spiritual growth.