Sticking Your Head In a Skunk’s Hole (Key to Being Sin Less)

Gold Brush Stroke

Have you ever stuck your head in a skunk’s hole?

No, really, think about it!

sin less

CC BY-SA: wikimedia

We Fail in Our Strength

Have you ever done something unwise, something for which you know better, something you’ve been warned not to do?

I have, more times than I like to admit. Likely, we all have.

In honor of the multitude of dumb things I do, I’m thinking of adopting the following ditty as my theme song:

“Well, I stuck my head in a little skunk’s hole
and the little skunk said
‘Well bless my soul.
Take it out. Take it out. Take it out. Take it out.
Remooooove it.’

Well, I didn’t take it out
and the little skunk said,
‘If you don’t take it out, you’ll wish you had.
Take it out. Take it out. Take it out. Take it out.
Remooooove it.’

I removed it—too late!”

I can’t help wondering if God is looking down at me saying, “There she goes again, sticking her head in another skunk hole. Will she ever learn?”

Although He has warned me of the dangers of sin, of idolatry, malice, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, envy, pride, a critical spirit, I choose to stick my head in those skunk holes anyway.

Inevitably, I get covered by the stink, only to whine with disgust and repeat the sin all over again.

Walking through life covered with the stench of sin is not pleasant. Yet you and I follow that path repeatedly. We read God’s Word (hopefully), attend Sunday church (or Saturday and maybe even holidays), and then live the life we choose, not the life He has for us.

When will I learn not to stick my head in those holes in the first place? When will I be strong and bold enough to stand up to temptation? When will I heed God’s warnings, His admonishments, His directives of love?

The answer is never—at least not under my own power! I will never be able to avoid temptation.

Under our own power, we will never be able to avoid temptation. But Jesus! Share on X

Left to my own strength, every time I come close to a skunk’s hole, I’ll stick my head in. Every time!

Even after I’ve been warned. Even after I realize the real danger of getting sprayed. Just to see what is there.

Living in Christ’s Strength

But the beauty is, I don’t have to live in my power. God promises to provide strength and guidance to follow Him.

We don’t have to live in our power. God promises to provide strength and guidance to follow Him. Share on X

He fulfills that promise in the personhood of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. Christ strengthens and the Spirit guides.

The “trick,” if you will, is to draw near to the Lord. To draw on Christ’s strength and the Spirit’s guidance by petitioning the triune God. To pray to Him and ask for help.

Steven L. Pogue, in his article, “The Christian Secret,” succinctly and clearly explains how to live as a Christian in a fallen world: “The Christian’s secret to a consistent life is for Christ to live His life through us.”

Not Sinless but Sin Less

When we open ourselves to Christ’s love, we no longer have to live on our own power. We no longer have to repeatedly stick our heads in the skunks’ holes.

Instead, we will produce good, sweet-smelling (and tasting) fruits. When we allow the Holy Spirit to lead us, we will recognize sin and have the ability to turn away from it.

That’s not to say we will never get stinky again. After all, we are sinful humans living in a fallen world.

I know I still stick my head down a few skunk holes. The difference is I rarely linger there anymore.

I now notice the danger of keeping my head in the hole and as a result, back out quickly, seeking cleansing by asking for forgiveness.

Someday, when I meet Jesus face to face, when I finally arrive in my permanent home, I will be able to claim righteousness and purity of thought and deed—and you will too.

Nonetheless, today, by the power of Jesus Christ and the leading of the Holy Spirit, though not sinless, I can claim to sin less. And for that, I am thankful.

By the power of Jesus Christ and the leading of the Holy Spirit, though not sinless, we can claim to sin less. Share on X

“I have been crucified with Christ: and I myself no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the real life I now have within this body is a result of my trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).

Share in the Discussion: Have you stuck your head in a skunk’s hole lately? If so, did you keep it there and get covered in a stench or did you recognize the danger and pull it out? Either way, God’s love is deep and wide enough to forgive and cleanse. Just ask!

Joining Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience today to give thanks (#694–714) for 1000 (or more) gifts—see my entire list here.

  • Finally, 1000 words written on my manuscript!; Midnight peace; Meaningful first day of VBS
  • Rachel blew out her first candle!; 14 years of life with Rachel; Cutting Winnie-the-Pooh’s hair
  • Tree frogs calling in the evening; Evening with friends at their campsite; No electricity = early night
  • Gifted doctors who can fix broken bones; 14 five year olds running up the stairs yelling “He is Risen”; God’s power
  • Super1st day of women’s mission convention; >230 women praising God thru song, prayer, fellowship; Christian friends
  • Privilege of reflecting God’s glory; Missionaries; Husband’s willingness to hold the house together in my absence
  • Son & daughter sharing joy of togetherness; God’s sturdiness in times of uncertainty; Jesus’ power & Spirit’s leading

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Know that I am blessed by your visits and value your comments. If you find my writings encouraging, please share them with others by clicking one of the buttons below. I love to pray for you and hear your stories!

By His Grace,



  1. Linda Smith on June 11, 2012 at 4:36 am

    Julie Sunne ~ you do me good ~ I just told our mutual friend ~ “our Pen-Pal is always one step ahead of my need”…you do me good Julie Sunne!

    • juliesunne on June 11, 2012 at 6:20 am

      Thanks, Linda, the feeling is mutual! Blessings.

  2. ED20F6 . on November 2, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    Now my only question is have you or anyone you know of really actually stuck yours or their head in a real actual skunks hole and if so or not have you or them been sprayed by an actual skunk and if so what was the story that lead up to getting sprayed by the skunk if you don’t mind me asking just out of curiosity?

    • Julie Sunne on November 2, 2013 at 9:53 pm

      I can’t say I or anyone I know has stuck our heads down a literal skunk’s hole, nor do I remember anyone who actually got sprayed. However, our dog has before. And recently my brother came with his dog to pheasant hunt with my hubby and his dog got sprayed badly (as if there is a goodly). Needless to say the hunt ended early and my brother washed his dog I believe three times with tomato juice to get the worst of the smell off.

      I guess we are much more likely to stick our heads in a figurative skunk hole. And I do that more than I care to admit.

      Now I’ll throw your questions back at you, ED20F6. You or anyone you know have a skunk spray story?

      • ED2OF6 on November 2, 2013 at 11:22 pm

        Now I myself have never been sprayed by a skunk but I do know of a few people who have but i didn’t know them at the time when they were sprayed by a skunk. For example I use to work with a girl who got sprayed when she was like 7 or 8. Now she kinda knew what a skunk was but it was her first time ever seeing one so she desided to follow it and ended up following it all the way to its hole. And believe it or not she actually “stuck her head the little skunks hole” and she “removed it to late” and she got a full face full of skunk spray from like point blank range. She stumbled back out of the hole the skunk came out and gave her a full body spray from head to toe before she could turn and walk away home (she was more in shock at first then she was disgusted). Her older sister soon later learned of the song and then that became her song and even she had a little fun with the song.

        • Julie Sunne on November 3, 2013 at 7:33 am

          Wow, that’s quite a story!
          “face full of skunk spray from like point blank range”–Thank God it didn’t do any damage to her eyes. I bet they stung a bit though. Can you imagine her parents’ expression when she walked in the house?

          Thanks for sharing!

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Julie Sunne

Hello, I'm Julie, an imperfect wife and mother of four. Life in this broken world is not always easy. Yet, joy can be found in each day through the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I find it's easy for our day's blessings to get lost in its happenings. But God's "mercies never end" (Lamentations 3:22) and His "grace is sufficient" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

May the posts and pages on this site offer you a measure of peace and encouragement.

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