Behold, I send you out j sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore, be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. Matthew 10:16
The tall, distinguished, grey-haired man who walked into my office in Silicon Valley was, like me, a member of the company’s senior staff. He was also a retired Marine colonel. He exuded strength and authority. But on that day, he seemed nervous. He closed the door, sat down, and spoke to me in a low voice. “I’ve been told to lease and purchase more buildings-- a lot more. Millions of dollars’ worth of property.” He pushed a sheet of paper across my desk. It was a signed authorization, typical for expenditures in excess of a million dollars. “It seems in order,” I said. “What’s the problem?” He replied, “When X signed it, he said, ‘You know, I suspect that sometimes people forge my signature.’ Then he just stared at me. I think I’m being set up. He must want me out and he’s setting me up. What do I do?” I’m sure my colleague wasn’t expecting my first response: “Read the psalms.” My second response: “Don’t worry. We can do some things to make sure he doesn’t trap you.” – was one that he understood. But I meant both responses.
What do you do when you’re outmatched, feel trapped, and don’t know how to fight? When someone is plotting against you? The Bible gives us two tools: Asking
God to fight for us, as the psalmists did, when we cannot fight for ourselves; and being as wise as we can be in the ways of the world. Two tools. Both necessary, both understood by God.
© Carol Dean Henn 2018
Carol Dean Henn of St. John’s Windish Lutheran Church in Bethlehem, PA