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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...

Nature's Warning Signs

May 18, 2014

Poison frogs may be small, but they’re hard to miss. With flashy skin in shades of blue, red, orange and yellow, they are the neon signs of the animal kingdom. To other creatures, such as snakes and birds, the bright colors are a message that says: “Beware! I’m poisonous! Don’t eat me, or you’ll be sorry!”

It’s no bluff either. As their name suggests, these amphibians have very toxic skin. The tiny golden poison frog is the most dangerous of all. Though it’s no bigger than a bottle cap, it packs enough poison to kill 10 men!

Poison frogs live in the rain forests of Central and South America. They are sometimes called poison dart frogs. That’s because some South American natives have been known to dip darts for their blowguns in poison collected from the frogs. These poison-tipped darts are then used for hunting.

No one knows exactly how poison frogs get their toxic skin, but it seems to come from the food they eat. In the rain forests, these amphibians munch on a variety of insects, including beetles, termites and ants. Frogs born in zoos are fed a different diet, and they do not develop the poison.

Have you ever been outside on a summer evening and heard a chorus of tree frogs or bullfrogs? If so, you might have guessed that frogs are nocturnal. That means they are active at night. That is true for most frogs. But poison frogs prefer daylight. This allows other animals to see their bright warning colors.

Poison frogs have only one known predator. A single species of snake is resistant to the frog’s toxin. For other animals hoping to find an easy meal, the message is loud and clear: “Look, but don’t touch.”

God’s Word is also filled with warnings. In Galatians 5, Paul wrote about some of the things Christians should avoid, such as hatred, anger, fighting and selfishness. These sins are like poisons that can draw people away from God and keep them from experiencing the eternal life He offers.

“I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:21-23).

God gives us warnings in His Word so we can stay far away from sin. He also gives us His Holy Spirit so we can live in a way that pleases and honors Him. Ask God to fill your life with the fruit of the Spirit.

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