A rat looked through a crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife opening a package. What food might it contain? He was aghast to discover that it was a rat trap. Retreating to the farmyard the rat began to proclaim, "There is a rat trap in the house, a rat trap in the house!"

The chicken clucked and scratched and, raising her head, said, "Excuse me, Mr. Rat, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it."

The rat ran to the pig and with a plea in his voice, said, "There is a rat trap in the house, a rat trap in the house!"

"I am so very sorry Mr. Rat," sympathized the pig, "But there is really nothing I can do but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers."

The rat turned to the cow, feeling quite desperate. "Like wow, Mr. Rat," the cow said, "A rat trap. Oh boy, like that really puts me in grave danger."

So the rat, feeling very dejected, returned to the house to face the farmer's rat trap alone. That very night a sound was heard throughout the house, like the sound of a rat trap catching its prey.

The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness she did not see the venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught, and the snake bit her. The farmer rushed her to the hospital.

The farmer's wife returned home from the hospital with a desperate fever. Now everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup's main ingredient. His wife's sickness continued to worsen, and friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. The farmer, to feed them, had to butcher the pig.

The farmer's wife did not get well. In fact, she died. Many people came for her funeral. So many, in fact, that the farmer had to slaughter the cow to provide enough meat for all of them to eat.

So the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and you think it does not concern you, remember that when there is a rat trap in the house the whole farmyard is at risk.

Is there a person God has placed near you that could benefit from you allowing God to show His concern and compassion through you to them?

Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, "Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord."

Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. -Romans 12:15

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