All God’s Creatures
June 19, 2008
Yesterday I found a snake under my deck. Or, I should say that my three dogs found it. The biggest dog, Abby, was barking like crazy. Now this got my attention because Abby isn’t really a barker. When I investigated, I found my dogs under the deck circling and barking. Because of the low deck and the shadows that it cast, I thought they were harassing a turtle. When I called them out of the deck though, it was not a turtle. It was a snake. It even came out to sun itself on my patio so I could get a better look. Thoughtful, that snake. Oh, did I say that I don’t like snakes?
Now, I know snakes can be anywhere. But really, at my suburban house? In my well-tended (okay, sorta well tended) fenced backyard? It was completely unexpected. And, did I say that I’m not a fan of snakes?
I called animal control. Guess what? They don’t do snakes. Gosh, neither do I….
I called my church. No, I wasn’t requesting the prayer chain to pray him out of the yard. But I did want the number of the guy associated with our church that did the snake education/demonstrations at our church picnics. Oh, and this is the part where I go on record as saying we do NOT handle snakes at my church!
Well, I was told to call 911 and that they would call the snake guy. Really, 911? I wasn’t even hysterical. Of course after the squirrel that almost fell in my lap from the ceiling of our old house, this almost seemed inconsequential. And ask me sometime and I’ll describe to you how mouse toe nails feel across your sleeping neck…. I must say that I didn’t react nearly as well to either of those incidents.
Sure enough, two officers were dispatched to my house. The first one didn’t really inspire confidence. It was that look on his face when he asked me if I was sure it was a snake. Oh, and how big was it? The second one was all business. He pulled on gloves, got a flashlight and got to it. He’s the one I want when I have a real emergency!
Guess what? We couldn’t find the snake. Probably got scared off from the dogs. After all, what self-respecting snake wants his nap disturbed by two hundred pounds of dogs? The first officer was visibly relieved!
Life is a lot like that snake incident. You’re just minding your own business, and along comes a snake. Usually when and where they are least expected.
What matters is how you react to the snake.
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.