Jesus told his disciples, “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as cunning as snakes and as innocent as doves.” (Mt 10:16) When you look at Christianity in the world today, it seems that we often get this saying back-to-front.

Many Christians live their lives ‘as gentle as serpents and as cunning as doves’. In other words, we are not particularly gentle with each other, or with ourselves for that matter; and we are not particularly cunning. The biggest disease that afflicts most Christians is repressed anger, and as a result, we act either like wounded animals or defensive snakes. And possibly the biggest challenge facing Christianity is a lack of vision or wisdom, meaning that we have no idea how to bring a solid conversion to our secular culture.

This is where we need to come back to the words of Jesus. Think like snakes, but don’t act like them. Act like doves, but don’t think like them. When we get that the right way around, we might just start to bring about a real change in our world.