by Macy Johnson
“‘Yes, Lord,’ she said, ‘but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall
from their masters’ table.’”
(Matthew 15:27 NIV)
I was startled from a deep sleep by the sound of empty cans banging against the tall aluminum pole at campsite #69 in Mistletoe State Park near Augusta, Georgia. Rocky Raccoon, balanced on his hind legs, exposed his big, white, furry belly, and clawed on the large, hanging, garbage bag.
“Jeff! Jeff!” I loudly whispered, trying not to scare off our late-night visitor. “There’s a varmint tearing at the trash!”
“Just get the broom and shoo him away like Forrest Gump’s mother did,” my husband sleepily replied. I shined my flashlight through the screened window and watched Rocky scamper away. “I was sleeping really well,” Jeff complained as he stepped out of the popup camper and raised the bag to critter-unreachable heights.
Merriam-Webster defines ‘scavenger’ as “an organism that typically feeds on refuse.” They have been around since the beginning of time. Jesus discussed scavenging with the Gentile woman who foraged for crumbs from the Bread of Life, as recorded in Matthew 15.
It did not occur to Sammy Squirrel that the peanuts Jeff tossed to him might be “refuse.” I munched a few as I tossed one to Sammy. He crept closer and snatched it up in his little claws. His big, dark eyes never left mine as he nibbled on the nut in tiny, squirrel bites. Sammy had obviously been treated as an honored guest before at this campsite.
My very favorite scavenger is the whiskered catfish. It doesn’t bother me in the least that he eats anything and everything off the bottom of the lake. He tastes so good!
I thank God for the bionetwork that cleans up the messes the rest of us leave behind. I hope you will, too!