Rev. Dr. Anna Verlee Copeland's Blog

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June 2 Post

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“All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being.” -- John 1:3

There are rat snakes in my yard, two of them over four feet long. The nice man I called to inquire how they might be moved to a more favorable terrain, wondered if they were within my sight. “They have to be within your sight when you call,” he said. “Then I can rush right over and move them for you.” The nice man on the phone apparently didn’t understand my resistance to hanging out with snakes while he drives over, or for any other purpose.

He was pleased that I called however, and that I didn’t want to send them to glory with a spade like the last people who called. “They’re part of creation,” I said. “God made them and called it good,” I said. I skipped elaboration on the Garden of Eve and the trouble the snake caused that first couple. I didn’t need the snakes to go home to Jesus, I just want them to go home somewhere else.

As you read this, please resist the temptation to solve my snake issue. No, I don’t have any rats. And no, I haven’t seen the two snakes since. In the absence of food, I hope they’ve moved on. Nevertheless, I keep my eyes open when messing around in the garden, and have a long pole handy in case one them needs to be encouraged along.

We’ve all got trouble in our garden sometimes, don’t we? We keep an eye on it. We walk around it. We try not to stir up trouble and make things worse. We ask for help removing it when necessary. And help is generally available.

The hardest thing, is to remember to be grateful for the trouble. God made all things, and with the trouble will provide the way to remove it. When we pay attention, God even helps us live with trouble for a little while, without coming to harm in the process. Until one day, and one day always comes, that trouble will crawl away someplace else by the grace of God. Today would be a good day for that.

Prayer: Merciful God, when trouble comes, grant me the tools to remove it, or show me the way to live with it until by your grace, it is removed from my sight. Amen

God’s grace, mercy and peace be with you,

Dr. Anna V. Copeland
Interim Senior Minister
Community Church of Vero Beach