Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Jewel # 207 (March 3, 2015)

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“They shall be Mine, saith the Lord of hosts,
in that day when I make up My Jewels.”
(Malachi 3:17)

To my dear grandchildren,

The Black-Footed Ferret

“Great and marvellous are Thy works, Lord God Almighty;
just and true are Thy ways.”
(Revelation 15:3)

When western prairies of the United States were being settled many years ago, millions of prairie dog homes dotted the plains.  Because these animals were considered pests, they were hunted and poisoned, so that today hardly any are left.

That poisoning also meant the death of a smaller animal - the black-footed ferret.  Not only were they also poisoned but their main food supply was also gone - the prairie dogs.   Now there are also only a few of these ferrets left, mostly in the state of Wyoming where efforts are being made to protect them.

The pretty black-footed ferret is closely related to the weasel, as shown by its slim body, short legs, alert expression and sharp eyes.  About two feet long from nose to tip of tail, it weighs only a pound and a half.  Its fur is mostly  brown, but its raccoon-like face is white with a black streak across its eyes like a bandit’s mask.  It has a black streak all along its back, and the tip of its tail and its feet are also black, the reason for its name. Being close to the ground, its agile body is well hidden in the grass as it skims along at high speed.

The ferret is a fierce nighttime hunter, often attacking animals larger than itself.  An example is prairie dogs.  They often weigh more than twice as much, but although the ferret may get badly wounded, it is rare for them to loose the battle.  When it is over, the ferret drags the heavier creature to its burrow for eating.  Ground squirrels, mice, rabbits and other small animals are also their victims.

Ferrets sometimes use prairie dog burrows as nests where their kits are born in early summer and raised by the mother.  Sometime before fall, each young ferret moves to a solitary burrow were it makes its home and carries back whatever it captures for its own consumption.

In the Lord God’s original creation all things lived peacefully together, but when Adam and Eve brought sin into the world, that perfection was ruined, affecting all living things.  And today, lions, tigers, ferrets, hawks, falcons, sharks and many other creatures still attack and kill one another.

But the Bible gives us cheerful news about a coming day when “the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the  lion shall eat straw like the ox. . . .  They shall not hurt not destroy . . .for the earth shall be full of  the knowledge of the Lord” (Isaiah 11:7-9).

Before that takes place, all who know the Lord Jesus Christ as their own Saviour will have been called to heaven and will look down on this peaceful scene with thankful praise to God for restoring His creation so wonderfully.  Will you be in heaven with those people?

Love you all,
Grandpa

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