Spring is a time for new flowers, budding trees, green grass, sunshine, insects, and yes, snakes.
Snakes out already? You bet…as temperatures start to climb those dreadful reptiles come out of hibernation and begin to enjoy the greater outdoors. I realize that some snakes are considered good, but for me, I have never been one to stick around when I see one. Instead, I become the fastest sprint runner on the track, leaving everyone behind.
A few weeks ago, I was walking in our pasture with our grandsons enjoying the warm sunny Kansas day. As we walked, our conversation centered around God’s creation marveling at the beauty He has given us. As we walked, we weren’t really paying much attention to where we were stepping until…I looked down and “yikes!”
Our oldest grandson, Christian was about to step down on a snake! The snake was coming out of its winter home and was ready to explore the great outdoors. What does a grandma do? SCREAM! And I grabbed the boys and pulled them as fast as I could away from, in my opinion, danger. I was not about to stay and watch that snake enter the area where we were standing.
Did the snake notice us? You bet it did! The snake peeped its eyes at me and turned very quickly back into the hole. You see, I have been told that they are as afraid of humans as we are of them. Risk it though, no way…this grandma was protecting her grandsons from danger.
What is danger? The definition of danger can vary from individual to individual depending on ones level of fear. Fear is an emotion that can be caused from past and current experiences, influences by others, and ones own mental capability. According to Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary fear is; an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger.
God has given us in His Word, story after story of people who were in harm’s way and human danger. Look at their responses.
- Did Noah experience danger? He sure did! The flood was raging outside the boat. What was Noah’s response? He listened to God and trusted Him. (Genesis 7 – 8:22)
- Did Moses experience danger? You bet he did! Pharaoh was out to kill him. What was Moses’s response? He listened to God and trusted Him. (Exodus 14:13 – 31)
- Did Joshua experience danger? Yes, most certainly! The army was moving in to take over the city. What was Joshua’s response? He listened to God and trusted Him. (Joshua 8:1 – 31)
- Did Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego experience danger? Yes, what a hot mess! The flames were raging. What was Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego’s response? They followed God and trusted Him. (Daniel 3:13 – 35)
- Did Daniel experience danger? Without a doubt! The lions mouth was open and ready to devour. What was Daniel’s response? He followed God and trusted Him. (Daniel 6:16 – 23)
- Did David experience danger? Of course, who would have wanted to stand against a giant? What was David’s response? He followed God and trusted Him. (1 Samuel 17:37 – 51)
- Did Peter experience danger? Yes, who would want to be trapped and chained? What was Peter’s response? He listened, followed, and trusted God. (Acts 12:6-8)
- Did Paul experience danger? Yes, what a dungy place filled with darkness. What was Paul’s response? He praised God and trusted Him. (Acts 16:25-30)
As you can see from these strong men of faith, their emotional fear did not take away from their ability to listen, trust, and follow God. They left their emotions behind and trusted God for their outcomes. As we face unpredictable times and experience emotions that would cause us to run into fear, remember that God is on our side and will accomplish His perfect will in stressful times.
Believing and modeling trust in God, not allowing your mind to freeze in fear, is a behavior that children need to observe at home. As parents, your behavior is key and important as you are called to lead, guide and direct your children so that they will grow to know, love, and trust Jesus. During a crisis we must be bold and pray without ceasing, trust in Jesus who is the source of hope, and follow Him in all that we model before our children. May your love, hope, and trust strengthen as you walk boldly with the ONE and ONLY JESUS!