May 29, 2014 1477
C.S. Lewis wrote that, “Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching.”
While it is true that our outward works are the evidence of what lies within, it is really the things in our lives that others don’t see that truly define who we are.
A few days ago, my little fluffy, white doggies started barking madly, and when I went outside to look, I saw a tail of something scaly slithering behind my BBQ.
When I opened up the door to the BBQ I found this big snake.
I didn’t know what it was or whether it would leave me frothing at the mouth and paralysed (or worse – dead!) if I grabbed it, so I posted a photo on Facebook, and the consensus of the collective Facebook wisdom was that it was a carpet python – Good for getting rid of rats and other small animals, but basically non-deadly to humans. But what about my little doggies?
Not wanting to fully trust Facebook on this matter, I was glad when Michelle Hood (having seen the photo on facebook) volunteered to come and pick up the snake. Michelle heads up the wonderful Christian ministry Mission Serenity with her husband Graham, and lives just down the road from me. Best of all – she is an all-round good girl who grew up in the country! They are good friends!
Now I don’t doubt my manliness, and I don’t discriminate on gender grounds, so I didn’t mind her coming to pick up the snake at all… now one bit, let me tell you! Thanks Michelle!
Things unseen! How long had we lived with that thing? How many times had friends visited us, without knowing that our snakey friend was just a few metres away?
The difference between this story and our lives is that we didn’t know about the snake, but we all mostly know what are the unseen things in our lives.
What sort of snakes do your life nourish? Think about the three H’s… Hurts, Habits, and Hang-ups… Think about things like unforgiveness, addictions, and wrong self-image.
There is another kind of “things unseen” that we need to start to nourish more… more time in prayer, more time in Scripture, gratitude and humility at the feet of the cross, a faith that never lets go of Jesus, an inner life of praise and worship (not just the outward kind). Spend time and effort on these things – the things unseen.
The snakes will always be with us, in some shape or form. It’s because of our geography. I live in Queensland, Australia, that’s why we get snakes. Praise God this one was only a carpet python!
But here’s the truth: we all live on sinful planet earth, with rotten human natures.
You see, the snakes in your life will feed on the rubbish of your life. The more rubbish in your life, the more they will grow.
But the good news is that the snakes has been overcome by the blood of Jesus! And if you let your inner life flourish by the grace of Jesus, the snakes in your life will be crowded out and suffocated, until the day when Jesus gives us a new geography – heaven and the earth made new.
I wish my snake friend well. Michelle released it into the bush. I hope it is happy doing what snakes do… and that it stays away!