The Gopher & the Pacifist (by David Brown)

Here’s another reflection from Pastor David Brown.

We have a gopher problem. I am not sure if it is one gopher or two or many. What i do know is that last fall mounds started appearing on the rear edge of our back yard. I haven’t found any new mounds this year, but i have spotted the gopher regularly at the base of our birdfeeder munching on sunflower seeds.

Last fall a mound or two appeared in our front yard as well. I have noticed a couple of “entrance holes” as I have mowed the lawn and yes, i have also spotted a gopher in the front yard. I don’t know if this is the same gopher as in the back yard, if they are two separate gophers or part of the same clan (could be many gophers as far a I know…they all look alike. you’ve seen one gopher, you’ve seen them all.)

I asked Lisa’s uncle what to do about our gophers and he suggested poison. “They are hard to get rid of”, he said. Being a pacifist, i have been looking for other means. I spent 25 dollars at Menards on a solar powered noise emitter that you put in the ground. It emits a noise every 10 seconds. After a week to 10 days the gophers are supposed to leave town. That was about a month ago.

Our neighbor mowed our lawn for us the other day and she described the gopher as “friendly”. This was quite annoying to me as I do not want any kind of gopher in our yard, much less friendly ones. Then she suggested that her 13 year old son could take some shots with his .22 rifle. He would enjoy that and it could take care of our gopher problem. Being a pacifist…

I have an odd feeling plotting the exportation or elimination of the gopher(s) in my yard. Too much of my time is spent thinking about it. Too often my thinking looks more longingly at the violent option.

Isn’t it like us humans to spend a lot of time figuring out how we can export or eliminate our “problems”. Israel does it with the Palestinians. Radical Muslims do it with the “infidels”. People in our country do it with the “illegals” and al quida. NATO does it with Qaddafi…and on and on. Of course the difference is that these aren’t gophers, they are people. People seeking to get rid of their problems whether it be a “one way ticket out of town” or the wrong side of the barrel of gun or rocket launcher.

And then I thought about our personal relationships and how we “export” by ignoring or belittling or shaming and shunning others. How we have “looks that kill” and how we can spend time plotting all kinds of things to do to others that will devalue them. In my own heart, the gopher problem is a mere symptom of the deeper issues that apply to all my relationships. I have to ask myself, “Am I plotting evil, or planning good for all those around me?” This is the bottom line. And it is the question I would ask you. Are you plotting evil, or planning good for all those around you?

I want to encourage you today to choose to plan good for those around you. And when evil thoughts of any kind pop into your head, eliminate them by thinking the opposite. Our world and your world will become a much better place to live in.

As for the gopher(s), we may learn to coexist. And that is my prayer for all humanity.

God bless you richly in these days as you seek to be a doer of good.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s