For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.–Romans 8:38-39

Ticks and Sin


All I can say is gross! Ticks are terrible little creatures. They literally suck the blood out of any living thing. Two cute little puppies showed up on our porch this morning, and aside from cuddling, feeding, and playing, we spent a good portion of the morning searching for ticks.

We found about a dozen so far, and a couple of them were, let’s just say, full! I’m sure there are more ticks lurking on and in the pups that we didn’t find during this first once-over. But it was a good start. Tick-picking is not a pleasant experience by any means, but I know the danger than animals can be in if they are not removed. If the ticks keep feeding upon the pups, they can cause depression, paralysis, and various diseases. For those of you who don’t know, when removing a tick, you must be careful to make sure the head comes out as well. If not, infection and more problems can occur. So, ever so carefully, I gently stroked and searched the puppies to find and remove the ticks. Some had obviously been there a while, so were easy to see and grab hold of. Some were hidden beneath layers of fur, or were small and hard to identify and remove. It was not a comfortable time for the pups either, but they hung in there like champs, and I could tell they were relieved when it was all over. A little soothing ointment, and they’re good as new.

After destroying the ticks, and washing my hands thoroughly, I kept thinking about how much the ticks reminded me of sin. Sin is everywhere. It takes root deep within us at times. It permeates our being. Indeed, we were sinful from birth. Just like the ticks, the more sin we root out of our lives, the more sin we seem to discover is still lurking in our hearts. Sin attaches itself to us, and won’t let go. Unconfessed and unrepentant, sin causes us worry and depression. It hinders our relationship to the Father. It paralyzes us. It sucks the lifeblood right out of us, causing us much pain and turmoil of spirit. And, if it is not destroyed after being removed, it just attaches itself again to us, or to its next closest prey.

Brethren and sisters in Christ, in what part of our body does sin not dwell?

Is there any single faculty, or power, or propensity that we have which

will not lead us astray if we will let it do so?


Removing those ticks reminds me of the way in which the Holy Spirit gently but firmly takes hold of our sin. Sometimes when the Spirit is at work, it’s a slow and painful process because we may have struggled with a particular sin so long that it feels like removing part of our body, and not just a foreign agent. As I released each tick’s grip on the pups, I stroked their head or paw, spoke soothing words to them, assuring them that everything would be all right. I let them know that have this thing in my grip now, and will not let go until it lets go of them. I assured the pups they were much better off without those nasty ticks slowly but surely destroying them. And our precious Holy Spirit does the same. Convicting, correcting, teaching us, the Spirit helps us in our weakness, interceding for us, doing for us what we cannot do for ourselves. By the gracious, gentle hand of the Lord, when we confess our sins before Him, He is faithful and just and forgives our sins and cleanses us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). The paralysis and pain of our sin no longer plagues us. Rather, we are cleansed with heavenly hyssop, and washed whiter than snow (Psalm 51:7).

O wondrous restoration which has lifted us up,

and made us more perfect than we were before we were broken,

and elevated us to a glory of which we could never have dreamed…


Author: Kristie

Kristie is a pastor's wife, mom, Bible teacher, and author of His Testimonies, My Heritage: Women of Color on the Word of God, which will be released in September. She currently serves as the Associate Director of Women's Workshops for the Charles Simeon Trust, helping to equip women Bible teachers. She joyfully supports her husband of almost 28 years, Thabiti, as he pastors Anacostia River Church in Washington, DC. They have 3 children. She has written contributions to the ESV Women's Devotional Bible; Word-Filled Women's Ministry: Loving and Serving the Church; Women on Life: A Call to Love the Unborn, Unloved and Neglected; and Hospitality Matters: Reviving an Ancient Practice for Modern Missions. Her work can also be found at The Front Porch, The Gospel Coalition, Desiring God, Christianity Today, and Revive Our Hearts. You can follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter (@kanyabwile).

4 thoughts on “Ticks and Sin

  1. Hi Sis
    This is so great! We are currently studying “The Holy Spirit” via a very good book titled “Experiencing The Spirit” by Henry Blackaby. This is an excellent analogy of what the Holy Spirt’s role is in our lives. It is God’s agent to lead, guide and direct us to do His work.

    Bless you Sis, job well done! Good luck with the pups. I will be sharing your story at bible study, I;m sure everyone will enjoy it.
    Luv ya

    • Such an encouraging and sweet Sis! Thanks and I pray the Spirit would work mightily in the hearts of all those who participate in the study, and the entire church body!
      Love ya,

  2. This was really touching. How you turned the arrival of two little pups into a spiritual life event. Thanks for sharing and I want to repost. Hope you don’t mind.
    Love you

    No Eden is happy to see the pups

  3. Gracious is our God!
    Would to God I would itch more from the thought of having the parasitic nature of sin within me than the physical presence of ticks (which I once had) on me!
    Thank you Kristie for this encouraging reminder to be killing sin or else it will be killing us!
    Love you much.
    Connie Brown

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