It is said that if the South is the “Bible Belt” then Texas is the buckle. I think this holds true because of the unreasonable amount of dangerous things that exist here. Venomous snakes, scorpions and poisonous spiders, everyone seems to be packing heat, and even the weather wants you dead by means of tornado, hail or sun scorch. I have prayed for safety in these last 6 months more than I ever have in my previous 36 years!
I have a new paranoia about me, I am always on alert and a bit jumpy even in my own home. My daughter has already stepped on a snake and had another fall out of a tree directly in front of her. When I go running on the roads, everything looks like a snake and my jog turns more into a high intensity cross fit routine jumping and dodging every stick, shadow and road debris. (see feature image of the 2 headed snake that almost strangled me on the road the other day.)
I’ve tried to turn these new treats to my homeland security to prayer instead of panic. To believe God’s commands to not fear and promises to be my protector and provider. Yet the Bible also teaches to take precautions and be prudent about dangers to avoid payment of the penalty for of potential consequences.
However the real dangers from our recent move to Texas do not actually slither, bite or blow. My real enemy right now is filling the voids with things other than Jesus. Moving creates a lot of holes in your schedule, heart and head. Jealousy, vanity, insecurity, laziness, complacency, and resentment give way to over eating, over spending, yelling at my kids, escaping with a drink, scrolling social media instead of personal interaction.
The prudent see danger and take refuge,
but the simple keep going and pay the penalty. Proverbs 22:3
One of the prudent precautions you do in Texas is “shake out your boots”. Something may have crawled in and everyday you have to check your shoes. A friend confirmed this with a story of a huge tree frog in her boot one day. It was startling enough to shake him out but to have squished him with her foot was heart attack potential!
I am choosing to “shake out my boots” everyday with continual prayer. To shake out those insecurities by reminding myself of God’s love for me. To shake out that need to be in control and remind myself His way is the best way. And to stop “shaking in my boots” because God is my protector and provider trusting that any pain that comes my way has purpose.
What can you ask God to help you shake out of your life today in order to prevent a dangerous situation for your physical, emotional or spiritual well being?