“Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom. My lover is mine and I am his…” (Song of Songs 2:15-16a).
Have you ever noticed that it’s the little things, not the big disasters, that do the most damage? The slow drip of water from the tap discolors the bathtub. The table surface is marred because the coffee spill wasn’t immediately wiped up.
It’s the “little foxes that ruin the vineyards.” This is particularly true when it comes to relationships, as the beloved in Solomon’s Song of Songs observes. The snappy reply, the small irritation, the hug not given—all these little foxes threaten to destroy the beauty of a vineyard in bloom.
It’s important that I take care to “catch” the little things that damage my relationships. In terms of my relationship with God, I can’t afford to neglect prayer, repentance, time with Him, and the gentle guidance of the Holy Spirit. As a wife, I need to attend to the little things in my marriage, such as expressing appreciation and affection. It’s a woman’s capacity to notice and attend to the little things that make a house a place of refuge and rest.
The beloved gives the reason for her concern about the little foxes: “My lover is mine and I am his.” It is her commitment to unity and intimacy that motivates her concern. She knows that intimacy is cultivated and maintained in the details. It is the little foxes, not the huge dragons, that pose the greatest threat to her. Consider your most important relationships—God, your husband, your children, your friends. Are there any little foxes you need to catch today?
~ Dear Father, help me catch the little foxes that can ruin the beauty of the vineyards of my relationships. Help me avoid neglecting the small things that are necessary to cultivate in order to maintain unity and intimacy with You and with those You have graciously placed in my life. Amen.
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