It was a hot summer day in the desert where we live. I was helping my dad finish a few jobs on the new house he was building for us. Dad asked me to crawl under the house so he could feed some wires down through a hole to me. I crawled into the space under the house, carrying a flashlight in one hand and some tools in the other. It was cool and dark under the house. I flipped on the flashlight and crawled to where Dad wanted me on the far end of the house. I shivered as I brushed some spiderwebs out of my way. Why am I afraid of spiders? I wondered.
I found the spot where my dad wanted me to pull the wires through. Suddenly I heard a sound that really sent shivers down my back. It’s a sound that everyone on the desert fears. It was the sh-sh-shaking sound of a rattlesnake [shake the baby rattle], and it came from right behind me. I didn’t dare move for fear that the poisonous snake would strike. Please, God, help me! I prayed. Instantly I felt calm.
I heard my brother yell, “There’s a big snake crawling under the house!” Then I heard my dad’s heavy footsteps. He told me to shine the flashlight at the snake. Then Dad raised his ax.
I knew that Dad had only one chance to kill the snake, which was coiled, ready to strike at me. With all his strength Dad brought the ax down, killing the snake. I stared at the still-moving body of the snake for just a moment, and then I scrambled out of the dark crawl space and back into the bright sunlight.
My mother threw her arms around me and hugged me tight as she told me she had been praying for my safety. I know that God answered her prayers—and mine—that day! Dad lifted the big snake’s body from under the house and tossed it onto a pile of rocks.
That night I thought about my encounter with the rattlesnake. And it made me think about God. Dad had only one chance to save me from that snake, whose bite could have killed me. God had only one chance to save us from the sin that the serpent Satan brought into this world. He sent Jesus to die for us and win the victory over sin.
The devil would like to hurt my family because we are working for God. But I thank God that Jesus is stronger than the devil.
This quarter your Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will help us plant a church among the Navajo people in the southwestern United States. Thank you for giving your offerings so that others can learn Jesus loves them.