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“Tatty, There’s a Snake in my Room!”

Thursday, 5 September, 2019 - 6:09 pm

It was 1:00am.

“Tatty! Tatty!” I hear through layers of heavy slumber.

“Tatty, Tatty, there’s a snake in my room!” my daughter pleads desperately.

Even in my groggy state I was able to articulate, “There is no snake in your room. Go back to bed.”

But she stood her ground. “No, there is a snake! I can’t sleep, Tatty, I’m scared.”

“What makes you think there’s a snake?”

“I can hear it!”

“Did you see it?”

“No, but I can definitely hear it and I cannot go back to my room until you kill it!”

So I got out of my bed, realizing she didn’t wake my wife because apparently I am the superior snake killer in this house. I followed her back to her room and said “OK, show me where the snake is.” But I was not getting off that easy, it seemed. “You find it, Tatty,” she insisted, and she hovered in the doorway watching me.

I went through all her drawers and closets, squeezed under her bed, and searched every nook and cranny of the room until she was satisfied there was no snake. Only then were her anxieties quieted and she was able to go back to sleep (as was I!).

We all have “snakes” in our lives: Fears. Anxieties. Worries. Concerns.

Perhaps you’re afraid of vulnerability or commitment, worried about your children’s futures, anxious about your livelihood, feeling uncertain about your marriage and what the future holds…but you are not alone. We all battle the same “snakes” at one time or another.

So how can we manage our anxieties? Who can we wake at 1:00am to deal with the “snake”?

During the month of Elul, which we have just begun, our Father in Heaven is particularly accessible. During the rest of the year, He is like a king in the palace—harder to reach. But during Elul He is like a king who travels through the fields to meet with his subjects—anybody can speak to Him.

That’s all we need to do. Talk to Him. Trust in him. Share our burdens and supplications with him, and ask him to remove the “snakes” from our lives so we can feel relaxed and energized and serve Him with purpose.

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