When Jesus sends out the twelve disciples, He gives them specific instructions. They are to keep moving, sharing the Good News. They are instructed to go just to the Jews. They are told to travel lightly. And they are told to go with caution:
“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16)
Good counsel for us today as well. The world out there is a scary place. There are indeed “wolves”, people who are dangerous to our faith and even to our persons. Our lives are to be lived among them. It compels vigilance, an alert posture, a careful lookout. At the same time, while we mix with trouble, we must not be seduced by it. So – wise as serpents AND innocent as doves. We are to be aware of the sin in the world, yet we ought to blush at it. We must not allow ourselves to be coarsened or compromised. Crafty yet sweet. Dangerous and harmless at the same time. That is our calling.
Text: Matthew 8-10; Psalm 62