Catch the Foxes


Catch the foxes for us,

   the little foxes

that spoil the vineyards,

   for our vineyards are in blossom.

– Song of Solomon 2:15, ESV

Recently, I heard Johnny Foster, a pastor and friend of mine, preach a message from this passage, and it surprised me. I had never heard a sermon on this particular verse before. Come to think of it, I rarely hear messages on this book of the Bible, at all.

However, Johnny’s message resonated with me. If you and I apply the life lesson from this verse, it might just save us from making a major mistake.

A little bit of context would be helpful: Song of Solomon is a love story. The takeaway from this text can help us with our love lives, but I believe it can help us avoid other potential pitfalls, as well. This simple verse serves as a warning to heed the little things that can spoil our personal and professional endeavors.

In the Song of Solomon, this little warning interrupts a love story in its early days. Things seem blissful and exciting for the happy couple, but then we get this image of little foxes spoiling a vineyard. Foxes forage gardens for food, and often, this happens before the plants reach full bloom. If a farmer is not careful to catch them or keep them away, these little animals could destroy an entire crop and have a huge impact on the farmer’s livelihood.

There is a reason that the verse uses the word “little” to describe the foxes here. Let me ask you a few questions to help put this in perspective.

  1. Have you or anyone you know ever been bitten by a lion?
  2. Have you or anyone you know ever been bitten by a dog?
  3. Have you or anyone you know ever been bitten by a mosquito?

Most likely, you haven’t been bitten by a lion. (If you have, and you lived to tell about it, that’s a story I’d like to hear!) You may or may not have been bitten by a dog at some point in your life. But I’m willing to bet that you, and everyone else you know, has been bitten by a mosquito.

Think about it—A lion is so large and apparently dangerous, that you’ll take extra precautions to avoid being attacked by one. On the other end of the spectrum, the mosquito is much smaller. However, the smaller mosquito, one that doesn’t pose as severe of a threat, is one that we sometimes struggle to protect ourselves from.

Just like the little foxes in the vineyard and the pesky mosquitos at your backyard barbecue, it’s often the little things that pose the greatest threat to our personal and professional endeavors.

In everything we pursue, we need to be resolute in protecting the things most important to us. To do this effectively, we must keep out the little things that threaten to destroy us.

In the office, it’s keeping the little disagreements from causing deep divisions among your team.

In our work day, it’s preventing seemingly small distractions from taking you away from the important project at hand.

In church, it’s stopping yourself from talking only to those you feel most familiar with and unintentionally creating a culture that’s unwelcoming to new people.

In marriage, it’s preventing a few busy weeks without time together from turning into busy months and years of feeling disconnected.

It’s easy to put up safeguards against the big, obvious threats to our endeavors and relationships, but most often, it’s the little things we overlook that sneak in and destroy us.

Can you identify some small threats that could potentially hinder your personal and professional endeavors?

Work to catch them before they cause major damage to you and those around you.

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Today, business means more than just mere products and services. Your organization needs to stand for something. Branding is what you tell the world; leadership is how you make it come true.

No one knows this dynamic better than Kevin Paul Scott.

Companies turn to Kevin for advice on how to up the meaning-quotient in their businesses, so that employees and customers alike champion the business as if it were their own.

Let Kevin come and teach your group about how to build a business and communicate corporate values in a way that resonates with consumers.

His speeches include:
• Building a Business with Meaning
• Leading When the Majority is Wrong
• In Changing Times, Hold to Unchanging Principles
• The War for Talent: Recruiting and Retaining Top Tier Talent
• Essential Exchanges: What You Have to Give Up to Go Up