By Bruce Green
Teaching Minister at 10th Street Church of Christ
Tim Friede has been bitten by poisonous snakes over 200 times in 17 years. It hasn’t killed him because his body has somehow developed an immunity to snake venom. He demonstrated this recently while being interviewed when he allowed a Black Mamba to bite him several times. Normally, a Mamba’s bite can be fatal in as little as fifteen minutes, but Mr. Friede was unaffected. Kids—do not try this at home!
It made me wonder though, if the same kind of thing could happen to people who are followers of Jesus? Is it possible we could develop an immunity to Him? After all, we read about Him, talk about Him, hear about Him, sing about Him and invoke His name in our prayers over and over and over . . . could it ever become something where we’re just going through the motions and it has no deeper meaning?
The answer is an absolute “yes”—we can develop an immunity to Jesus. But the good news is that it doesn’t have to happen.
We can make a conscious effort to stay sensitive to the Lord. And how do we do that? We do what you’re supposed to do when you’re standing on holy ground—we take off our sandals! In ancient times, taking off your shoes exposed your vulnerability—you couldn’t fight, run or do much of anything without them. Taking off our shoes before God is an act of surrender. By doing so we acknowledge we’re not going anywhere, we aren’t doing anything, and we certainly aren’t in charge.
Taking off the sandals of pride, distraction and dullness will keep our faith fresh and keep us from becoming immune to Jesus. So whenever Jesus is involved, whether it’s singing or praying or opening up the word of God, let’s make sure we recognize we are standing on holy ground and act accordingly.
When the Lord saw he had gone over to look, God called out to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”
And Moses said, “Here I am.”
“Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” (Exodus 3:4-5)
You can find more of Bruce’s writings at his website: atasteofgracewithbrucegreen.com.