My husband takes his chances when it comes to sunburns, but not me. I don’t like them. Sunscreen is my friend and never more so than when I’m in higher elevations. In fact, I bought a new tube of sunscreen just before our trip to the Tetons and Yellowstone. And believe it or not, I even remembered to take it with me and use it before each outing.

One day, though, I somehow missed applying my trusty protector to one particular area—my left wrist and hand, just below my watch. I didn’t notice the effects of my negligence until the next morning. I could feel the burn and my hand resembled a bright red paw. Good grief. Just the look I wanted for vacation, huh?

You wouldn’t think my hands would be in the line of direct sunlight, would you? However, we’d been in Yellowstone the day before visiting Old Faithful and other points of interest, and I had been a picture-taking fool.

While manning the camera, I’d held my hands in an upraised position much of the day—especially at Old Faithful, where I waited poised and ready for any action. Unfortunately, I was also poised for the sunburn I didn’t see coming. You can bet I didn’t neglect protecting my hands after that.

Sometimes we fail to protect ourselves spiritually. The enemy of our souls is on the prowl, just looking for chinks in our armor. He watches for areas where we’ve neglected to cover ourselves with the Word of God and prayer.

We may think we’re not at risk in a certain area or get too busy or distracted to turn to God’s Word or call on him for wisdom, help, and protection. We may submit most areas of our lives to his leading but hold onto a few for ourselves. Or maybe we’re rather half-hearted and take a hit and miss approach to time spent with God. Worse yet, we might neglect Him completely, taking our chances and assuming we’ll be able to deal with whatever comes down the pike.

We may not notice the effects of our negligence immediately, but if we continue on in our own way, we’ll soon be dealing with the consequences of a spiritual burn. And by that time, it may be visible to others as well.

Let’s be alert to the dangers that threaten our spiritual lives. Let’s be diligent to apply the protection God offers us. Let’s cover ourselves with the Word of God and prayer.

“Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” Ephesians 6:11

*What area of your life do you sometimes forget to protect?

*Don’t miss out on the “Back At It” Giveaway. Deadline to enter is noon Sept. 2.

*The latest issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, came out earlier this month. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is free and to the right!


  1. Hmmmmm….this has been a theme with a couple of blogs I’ve been reading lately. Perhaps God is trying to get my attention. Thank you for allowing God to use you!

  2. Thank YOU, Monica — appreciate your encouragement! Such a blessing to hear that God is using my words!

  3. I got sunburned up in the Alps this summer, so I rediscovered that I don’t like sun burns either. :)

  4. This really hit home this morning….thank you for a much needed reminder!!

  5. Laura, the Alps? Wow! Sounds great! The sunburn? Not so much :)

    Emily, so glad this post was meaningful to you today. Thanks for letting me know!

  6. Frequent sunburns can lead to cancer. So bad gets worse, huh?

    I admit, I laughed and laughed when I read just HOW you were sunburned on your hand. Anyone who loves to take pictures can relate. And how tragic that your hand was burned doing something you love because you lacked protection.

    The applications are endless. The implications are clear. Thanks for the reminder. :)

  7. Oh be careful little hands. . .

    My mind! I need a full on football helmet for mine. What a mess I get into some days because my mind wanders all over the world most days.

    So glad for the armor of God that locks down on me as protection. If I could just remember where I put it all?!


  8. “the consequences of a spiritual burn”.

    That’s a powerful post Cheryl with convicting and challenging words. Well worth the read and reminder!

    Blessings to you dear one!

  9. Thanks so much for your messages, Flea, Elaine, and Lisa. So glad you enjoyed the post!

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