Don't Chase the Snake

Terribly painful, shocking misfortune happens to us all.  Sometimes others wrong us (Mt. 5:44).  Sometimes we suffer for our faith (II Tim.3:12).  Sometimes we suffer the consequences (I Pt. 4:15).  Sometimes it is time and chance (Ecc. 9:11).  No matter the reason, we are always left with the same choice – what do I do?  A few years ago my dad was struck by a copperhead while taking out the trash.  It was dark, and he was wearing slippers.  What did he do?  Well he wanted to kill that snake, but he didn’t have a hoe handy, the light was very dim, and time was against him.  He left the snake and raced to the doctor. 

What do we feel when we are accosted by a stranger, deceived by a trusted friend, slandered for our faith?  When we smash our thumb?  Or begin to fail in our health?  We feel pain, we feel fear, and we feel anger.  Understandably, we want to kill the snake.  But time is against us.  We can chase the snake, catch it, and lop off its head, but what have we allowed to course through our veins in the process?  Vengeful satisfaction comes at a great cost – a cost which will very likely kill us. 

Dearly, Beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, “’Vengeance is mine; I will repay,’ saith the Lord.” – Romans 12:19

Chase the remedy, not revenge.  Pursue after goodness, peace, love, and Christ.  Leave the snake for God.  He’ll know what to do.

By the way, my dad’s just fine.

Andrew R. Lehmann