Thursday, November 12, 2015

Jewel # 230 (November 10, 2015)

“They shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts,
in that day when I make 
(Malachi 3:17) 

The Tough Zebra

To my dear grandchildren,

"A wild donkey used to the wilderness . . . snuffeth up the wind at her pleasure.”
(Jeremiah 2:24)

The Bible does not refer to zebras by name, but they also “snuff up the wind” and are much like the wild donkey referred to in the opening verse.

Among all the animals of Africa, the zebra is truly a beautiful and outstanding creature.  Its prominent stripes, short, thick mane, soft, black muzzle and erect ears make it different from any other animal.  There are three main breeds.  The mountain zebra is the most common, having velvety black and creamy-white stripes, but their underneath body is all white.  The Burchell’s is the tallest.  Its stripes are irregular with none on its legs.  Grevy’s is the third one and has the most stripes, but they are narrower.

The Creator provided these stripes as an excellent means of camouflage.  The zebra’s chief enemy is the lion.  The stripes blend so well with grass, trees and brush that the zebra is not easily seen.  Even in broad daylight, a group standing together presents such a mixed design of black and white that a hunter (their other enemy) is confused and cannot easily pick one out as a potential victim.

These animals have excellent sight, hearing and sense of smell and are seldom caught unawares.

Their bands are always headed by a fierce stallion, and all are savage fighters.  When they are attacked, they all turn their heels to the enemy.  A kick from any of them can break a jaw or other bone, convincing the attacker to give up the fight.

Out on the African prairie, grass is the main food for many animals, and the Creator has provided an excellent way for some to share this resource.  Zebras eat only the tops of certain tall grasses; gnus will follow, since they prefer the middle of the stems; finally, the lovely springboks finish it off down to the ground.  They all leave the area until the grasses grow tall again.  This is more evidence of God’s special care of all His creatures.

Sadly, many zebras are killed by predators when they carelessly separate themselves from the band.  This reminds us of the need of every believer in the Lord Jesus to share his life with others who also love the Saviour, to help protect one another from our “adversary the devil, who as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

The Bible says, “Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour.  For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falls; for he has not another to help him up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10).  The Lord wants us to help and encourage one another in a happy Christian life.  Do you have this kind of friends?

Love you all,

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