Foxes are undomesticated mammals of the dog family, related to, but smaller than wolves with shorter legs, pointed muzzle, large, erect ears and a long, bushy tail. Foxes are cute. They are colorful and furry and much beloved for anyone growing up watching Disney cartoon movies. However, foxes can be a problem for farmers and gardeners since they are omnivores and eat both meat and vegetation. They will trample and eat growing plants as well as digging plants up to search for the worms around the roots. Foxes can be very destructive to any crop that has been planted.
The Word of God tells us in Song of Solomon 2:15 to catch or seize the foxes that spoil or destroy the vine or the vineyard. God’s statement here is true about grapevine husbandry in the natural, but it has a great depth of truth in the spirit as well. Our personal “vineyards” are our lives. The crops we plant and cultivate, along with the fruit we produce can be seen in our family, relationships, ministry and character. God wants all of these aspects of our lives to flourish and thrive and reproduce His life in other people. Sadly, there are many foxes in our environment that trample our plants and vines and consume and ruin our fruit.
Just like in the natural, spiritual foxes are small in size, but crafty, patient and relentless. They must be “caught” to prevent the natural result of their activity. The spiritual foxes are not the big problems or challenges that roar at us or keep us awake at night. They are the little annoyances or habitual thoughts that are contrary to God’s Word. Sometimes, we have lived with these little foxes so long, they seem like part of the family. Some of them, we even make provision for or excuses for in order to keep. Little foxes are as varied and individual as the vineyards they inhabit, but some examples are crude joking, over-spending, road-rage driving, criticizing others, lying, being jealous, being greedy, boasting about ourselves and participating in strife of any kind. Many believers allow these things in their lives and some use them as coping mechanisms to “help” them get through the stress of the day.
If the vine of your life is not producing the kind of fruit you want or expected, do an honest evaluation of the little foxes in your habits and thoughts. That is where they live and that is where they will have to be removed.