Claustrophobia is defined as a fear of enclosed spaces. Like any phobia, the severity of claustrophobia can vary widely from person to person. Sufferers may experience symptoms in small rooms, crawl spaces, crowds, and many other situations. If you are claustrophobic, you may feel panicked when you find yourself in tight quarters. You may cry or yell. You might attempt to flee by any means. Some people with claustrophobia find it difficult to breathe. Some say that it feels like the walls are closing in on them.
Eventually, you may begin to dread activities that could cause you to feel closed in. You might skip crowded parties or other events, avoid rides that use shoulder restraints, leave the door open when you enter small rooms, or make many other concessions to avoid your fear.
There is a creature that actively creates small spaces and is created to do so. The Ermine. The Ermine's paws have claws which enable it to dig. The front feet are smaller than the back which helps it fit into small, tight spaces. They seek this environment in order to dig out and catch their prey. This means moving from wide open spaces of comfort to small, enclosed places to find their reward - food.
In order to follow Jesus, some people feel like they have to squeeze into a tight box of rules and regulations dictated to them by an uncaring, far-off deity. Some refuse to give their life to Christ in order to avoid the trap they see as living as a Christian. Nothing is further from the truth.
Before you believed in Christ, you were separated from him. You were not considered to be citizens of Israel. You were not included in what the covenants promised. You were without hope and without God in the world. At one time you were far away from God. But now you belong to Christ Jesus. He spilled his blood for you. This has brought you near to God.
The Ermine chooses to dig and create a small space for its own good. But when we trap ourselves with our own sin, Jesus digs us out of our den to provide freedom. The solution to getting yourself out of the constraints of sin is JESUS. Admitting, to a Savior who cares, that you are a sinner and believing that He died on the cross for you is the opposite of confinement; it is the most freeing and exhilarating experience a person can have.
Responding in Prayer
Gracious Heavenly Father, thank You for Your Son Jesus. His sacrifice was made so I may receive freedom from the tight hold of sin on my life. You are a Father who cares and loves us and has given us a way into the open, through Your Son. Thank you for the freedom we have that can only be found in You. Amen
Photo credit http://www.gs.bergen.hl.no/~ytrebygda/natfoto/royskatt.jpg