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Lessons from Wile E.’s relative

October 13, 2008

I’m a deer hunter. Not the freaky, horror movie type, but the red-neck, living in the trailer, beer belly type. (Of course, without the beer belly… I think…)

I like to sit in a tree from dark to dark, and fight the urge to nap. I enjoy watching the sun come up, and enjoy it going down even more. Of course, there is a list of hated things too…

Like squirrels. Or cold. Man, I hate the cold. Not like, brr, I’m chilly cold. But like, my liver is shivering, my spleen is trembling, and, holy cow, I can’t feel my toes. And of course, the snot. I could do without the frozen snot.

But I added a new hated thing…..Coyotes. Yup. Wile E. was a hero of mine, but now, well, now he is on my most hated list. Here’s why.

I didn’t see him coming until it was too late to realize what he was. In my tree, looking out on an open field, enjoying God’s goodness, and suddenly there is a blur of fur, blazing across the field, and up the mountain. I wasn’t sure what I had seen. I had to ask my father-in-law, who was sitting on the ground as it ran 15 yards in front of him, what it was.

Here’s the kicker… I had never seen a coyote before. In fact, I had never even known I should have been looking for a coyote. In its predator way, it snuck up on me, and in its Wile E. wearing the rockets on the roller skates way, it blew by so fast, I could probably say, I still haven’t seen a coyote! That ticks me off. You know why?

I know to look for bears. I know what bear tracks look like. I even know what to do when I see a bear. (It involves flexing like Arnold Schwarzenegger and screaming like Richard Simmons!)

But I don’t know the signs that a coyote is coming, or that it could be coming. I don’t know what the difference is between a coyote and, say, a German Shepherd. (Now, I am pretty sure I can tell the difference between a coyote and a Chihuahua, but I digress…) I don’t know where they come from on the mountain, or if they stay in the valleys. I’m totally be-fuddled by coyotes.

It’s exactly like pride in my life. It’s when I am not thinking about it, when I am totally unaware of its presence, that it blazes into my life, does its damage, and then leaves. And I am left trying to figure out where it came from, why it chose now, and what to do the next time I see it. (Although, in retrospect, the bear reaction would probably be effective at combating pride!)

The positive is… I am looking for coyotes around every turn. I am prepared. I am ready to combat the meanest of coyotes, and refuse to be caught off guard again. No coyote is going to sneak up on me.

Wouldn’t I do better if I would treat pride that way? If I would be sober minded and watchful so when that coyote, or roaring lion, tries to devour me, I am ready?

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