So I am afraid of snakes.  REALLY AFRAID…

Now if you think this would be a great prank, its not!  I mean I will punch you in the face, regardless of your age, gender or how funny you think it may be – you will get punched!  Even as I am writing this, I am having  hard time looking at the image I chose – I mean I am getting those cold chills that shoot down your spine, and make the hair on the back of your neck stand up.  Yuck.  Even on TV, I feel like they are too close.

I am sweating now.  REALLY DON’T LIKE SNAKES.

The other is heights… not a fan.

Everest-575683I always thought that climbing Everest would be a fun thing, until I found out it cost about $60,000 for the permits alone – and on my salary that is not about to happen.  But it was always a dream.  Now I’m married and have a family, so that is not happening.

 

But if you told me there was a snake at the summit, I don’t care if I had moved heaven and earth to get there, I would turn around.  I guess what I am saying is, this is a fear that I have, for better or worse and it is something I will just have to live with.

I have had a few encounters with snakes, a cobra once or twice, and a few others.  Mostly in African forests, and hiking trails or in the country somewhere.

When Jesus says in Scripture “Watch out for those snakes” meaning the Pharisees or some other religious group – I get it.  Yes Jesus, snakes, yuck.  I get it, those slithery, wet, non-limbed creatures that unhinge their jaws to eat a meal – who wobble around with swollen bellies after snatching a young from it’s mother… snakes… I’ll be sure to watch out for those.

I am in ministry which means I have met some snakes in my time.  They slither around, quietly, watching, waiting until out of nowhere they recoil and dig their fangs in deep.  Ouch!  I wish Jesus had permissively said “Kill the snakes.”  That would have been better – it would have given me the motivation to draw my spiritual sword and slice them in 2.  But he does no say that – instead it is a distance warning.  Stay away.  That’s harder.  How do you do that when sometimes you are sitting across from them week after week at the church conference table?  How do you do this?  Their beady eyes watching every mistake you make, their tongues hissing with the warning that they are not what they seem.

I guess my wounds are showing.  I have been bitten… a few times by the wives of the snakes.  That’s one you never see coming.  We will all be bitten by lies, accusations, misrepresentations.  They hurt, the poison kills part of us, but I am reminded of the words of Acts 28:5, “But Paul shook the snake off into the fire and suffered no ill effects.”  One day I will be able to live into this verse…but for now…

I think I’ll just be afraid of snakes.