The Scout: Friends or Foes? By Frederick Remington
Our eye goes immediately in this picture to the Indian scout seated on his horse. A wintry night is about to change into the day as you see the sky lighten with just a touch of starlight. As we study this Indian we see him seated on his saddle yet ready to ride in a moment. He is not relaxed. He is ready to react.
Our scout looks out over a vast snowy plain where he watches carefully the flicker of campfires. Who are these people? Are they friends or foes? He may sit poised in the saddle for hours just watching, or he may ride forward a little to catch a better view. But we can bet he'll not take his eyes off the movement in the distance.
I find this picture helps to illustrate the truth found in 1 Peter 5:8-9, "Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour. Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith."
Over and over our Lord warns us to watch and pray. He knew the dark forces bent on destroying his followers and didn't want them caught off guard. We should be seated in our saddle -- at peace in our life-- yet never complacent or off guard.
The forces of this universe will either help our spiritual walk with God or hinder it. WE have the same determination to make as this Indian scout -- Is it friend or foe? Will it be good for me or will it be bad? Jesus says there is only one way to find out. We are to stay awake to watch and pray. The Holy Spirit will give us discernment so that we will not be harmed.