The snake can live in the place where you serve
Acts 28:3 “Paul gathered a pile of brushwood and, as he put it on the fire, a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand.”
In a beautiful picture of servant-leadership we see the Apostle Paul doing what many could have done but didn’t. He helped to build and keep the fire going for everyone to get warm in the rain and the cold.
He had single-handedly held the morale of everyone on board together. He had tirelessly stood his ground because he knew God had called him to Rome. He had been alert to any plan the crew had for escape for he knew everyone would be saved. He encouraged where needed and gave advice even though it wasn’t received. Here he is serving the people. But look what happens … a snake is driven out from the fire and coils around his hand.
The lesson is that the trials will always continue. You are never immune from them. You have given everything, survived the storm, served as best as you can and literally poured out your life for others and even then a new trial can suddenly latch on to you. If the storm doesn’t kill you the snake will try its best. The snake is different to the storm because it will not give you any warnings, it will just launch at you from nowhere, when you least expected it to. You were doing your best and from within that act lurches the snake.
It attacked the servant hand that was helping others. The enemy of your soul will do all he can to cut off your impact to others.
We must be alert in every fire that we build. Others may be commenting on how beneficial it is and many other positive remarks. The picture may be a beautiful one. However, stay alert because from the most beautiful picture can come an enemy attack that will do its best to shut you down for good.