““Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.” Matthew 10:16
Hello, glad to come your way again. Last week, we ended on the brute nature of man by looking at a Bible story in Cain and Abel. Man’s heart can be cruel indeed, and we should never underestimate it.
Today, we want to focus on these words from Jesus to his disciples. He was giving them an assignment and projected the wickedness of people his disciples were sent to. He called them, “wolves”. It was a Greek metaphor describing the cruel and destructive nature of man.
You see, with that in mind, Jesus still sent them to go to these people. There are some issues in life which are unavoidable. He just told them how to behave in the midst of savages: be wise as a serpent, harmless as a dove.
We will now look at wisdom in a snake. In my lifetime, a snake has been denoted to be evil because of its poisonous venom. It also symbolizes evil, treachery, double tongued and the like. In my conversation with a friend sometime back, he retorted to me, “I don’t like him!”, to which I questioned, “why?”. He then later told me, “he is a snake!”. After that, I got the gist of his conversation. So in reality, we don’t see anything good in a snake, but in an unlikely place like this, lies a certain wisdom to help live among people who don’t seek our wellbeing and our good.
Let us look at some few features of a snake.
1. The ability to work unnoticed– snakes don’t court attention. It knows its relationship with man is predatory; it is either kill or be killed. This facet talks about their creativity ie to be industrious without attracting undue attention. If we are to survive among wicked people, we should filter our conversations and the information we share with them as much as possible. Some people easily become the bait of an enemy by their mouths. Certain people don’t need to know ALL your business moves, especially if they have a desire to harm you. It is sometimes a good thing to bake your bread in silence.
2. Snakes listen to their internal organs– the snake’s only external organ is the eye. They rely on their internal organs for everything else asides sight. To me, this talks to me about instinctive thinking. It is said, when the tour guide takes tourists on a game park in South Africa, he normally has a Zulu with him. I am told, whilst the guide wows the tourists with information on the animals, the Zulu quietly relies on instinct to spot the animals. Without the Zulu on board, can you imagine the outcome of the excursion? Learn to move with your gut feeling every now and then, especially when you are unsure of people’s motives and agenda. Sometimes, information can be a ‘false prophet’.
3. Some snakes can also swim and fly- this speaks to me of versatility and unpredictability. If you are surrounded by people with ulterior motives, don’t let them figure you out too easily. Easily being predictable is a tool a wicked person can use against you. Don’t give people the reaction they are accustomed to anytime they aggravate you. For once, shock their world with a different set of response. Versatility also talks to me about flexibility. Stiffness can be a liability. Reinvent yourself and evolve, so that you are easily not dispensable at work or life, in general.
I think this will be it for now. May the Lord bless and keep us all as we go about our daily grind.
What did you get out of this? Do you know anything fascinating about a snake that you will like to share in your comments? I like reading comments!
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Till, I come your way again…
Peace & Love