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Never Give Up

Last week Cole and I were outside near the garden just looking around and checking on things. Cole, as usual, wandered around exploring everything he could find. In a little bit he came to me and said, “Papa, there are bees going in and out of the ground over there.” Now, those of you who really know me know that the statement he made would be a major alarm. I quickly asked, “Where are they? Show me.” Well, he guided me over to the place where he saw them, picked up a stick and was going to stick it right where they were. That boy! I quickly stopped him with the stick because he was about to poke it right down the hole and I knew what that would do.

After we found the hole I had him stand back and we observed a bit. It was not bees. It was Yellow Jackets. Now, I don’t know if you have ever had a close encounter with those little guys or not, but they are tenacious. No, that is an understatement. They are down right MEAN!

Yellow Jackets, for those of you who do not know, are a wasp who live in the ground. They find a hollow in the ground, often something that follows along the root of a tree and build their nest underground. You can slip up on them very easily without knowing it and they return the favor with a very quick response. And, I can tell you from experience, that though they are very small compared to other wasp, they make up for it with their sting. I’ve had as many as eleven get me at the same time… and they really hurt.

So Cole and I got us a chair, after he put the stick down, and sat there and observed, from a distance mind you, for a little while. Yellow Jackets will have a main entry to their nest but they will always have another entry and escape route. We watched and watched and never could find the other entrance. If you are going to get rid of them, you have to find both. You go out at night, plug the escape route, pour gasoline down the main entrance and cover it and you will have success with getting rid of the little critters.

For the next few days I continued to observe but never found the escape route. So, Sunday morning I went out while it was really cold and dark, swept the leaves away from the main entrance and gave them about $2.00 worth of regular for their tank. I knew that I had not yet found the other entrance but thought it would get them anyway because of the cold and their inability to fly away.

Yesterday, the next day, I was out working around the area and what did I see but a boat load of Yellow Jackets trying to get back in the hole where I has poured the gas. Obviously they did not appreciate the fumes still arising from the ground, but they were trying anyway. They would not give up.

So, I got me a chair and sat with my eyes glued to the area. Surely, I thought, I will see the other hole somewhere. Out of all those little fellows trying to get in, someone will think about the back door. But, not so. So I got a shovel and threw dirt over the main entrance. Did they give away their other entrance? Nooo! They tried to dig their way back to the original. Does anyone have any dynamite?

As I sat there I thought about these guys and the fact that no matter what I had done to extinguish them, they were not about to give up. No matter what I did to them, they kept coming back. I knew you had to plug the other hole but thought it would work anyway because it was cold. I was wrong!

In an attempt to get rid of a pesky pest, I learned a lesson. No matter what comes our way and how drastic the situation may be or look, we should never give up. God, for what reason I do not know, created these little critters. And He created them to survive. And, surviving they were. Now I have me a bunch of gassed up, high octane Yellow Jackets who, I’m sure, will be a whole lot less friendly now.

But, even though I have a contest before me, I walked away with a better understanding of life. God built in us a need to survive and even if we are doused with something lethal in our lives, we must not give up.

I’m sure that some of these little guys died by my hand and I seriously doubt that they will continue to live in that particular spot. But the survivors will do whatever it takes to carry on and I know I will run across them again somewhere.

I just wonder if I could and would respond to my creator the same way. Will I give up or make whatever adjustments necessary and keep on going? What about you? Believe me, you will get the opportunity to answer this question.