“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves” (Matthew 10:16).
A dove is to the birds of the air what a sheep is to the animals of the field…peaceful, harmless, and nonviolent. Between these two similar temperaments, some are surprised to find the shrewdness of a serpent as an example to be embraced. It points to the intelligence that must be exercised in our going out; to be savvy, astute, aware, street smart. Sanctuary religion is always safe. For a missional faith, however, it’s necessary to keep your head on a swivel; know where you are and what’s around you.