“The Good Little Snake”
Everything was just fine for Stanley in the Garden of Eden. He was a harmless little snake and just like all the other animal children, he just wanted to play with the mongoose and the lambs and the turtles and the mice. See in the Garden of Eden, none of the animals were enemies so they all played together all day long. That is how it will be in heaven too.
Stanley loved foot races with the Cheetah. Oh, I forgot to mention that snakes had legs and feet in the Garden of Eden too. Well, everything was peaceful and fun and loving in the garden until one day, all of a sudden, the garden became very dark. The animals scurried about to try to figure out what was going wrong.
“What is it?” Stanley pleaded with his best friend Morris the Mongoose.
“Something is wrong with the Garden.” Morris cried out.
“But we should find Adam. He will know what to do.” Stanley said trying to calm his friend.
“That’s just the problem.” Morris yelled as they ran. “Adam and Eve caused the trouble.”
They joined the throng of animals all rushing to the center of the garden, the great tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Suddenly they stopped at the ridge that surrounded the center of the garden where God always walked and played with his humans. There stood God, majestic and awesome as always. Before him stood Adam and on her knees behind Adam was Eve and she was weeping, something nobody had ever seen before since there never was any sorrow in the perfect garden. Then off a ways was a very strange beast. It was a snake but not a sweet snake like Stanley and his brothers and cousins. This snake was huge, swelled up like he was full of bad things and he was hissing and snorting like he had been angry since the dawn of time.
“Do you know him Stanley?” Doris the Dove said landing on Stanley’s head.
“No.” Stanley said. “He isn’t like any snake I ever saw. He isn’t sweet and full of games and love like most snakes.”
“That’s because he isn’t a snake at all.” A voice came from behind. Everyone turned and saw Henrietta the Hummingbird flitting from head to head. “A few minutes ago, all of us Hummingbirds flew down there to find out what is going on. That’s no snake, Stanley. That is God’s enemy. They call him Satan and he has done a terrible thing.”
All of a sudden, there was a terrible earthquake and everybody was thrown every which way. Stanley screamed trying to stay close to his friends but it was no use. Things were falling and it was all he could do to tell which was up and which was down. Chaos rained down for what seemed like days and then all of a sudden, it was still. Stanley stared up at the sky. Suddenly Henrietta appeared. “You ok Stanley?”
“Yes, I think so Henrietta.” He said rolling over. Then he noticed something terrible. His legs were gone. “Hey no I’m not. Somebody stole my legs.”
“They weren’t stolen Stanley.” The little bird explained. “God passed judgment on the great evil snake because he brought sin into the garden.”
“Well that’s not my fault!” Stanley complained. “Why should I suffer because someone else did wrong?”
“Everybody is suffering, Stanley.” She continued. “Look around you, the garden is gone. See over there. That fierce angel with the fiery sword is standing guard over it. Nobody can go back. The earth and the people are fallen because Adam and Eve did the one thing they were not supposed to do.”
“What could they do that was so bad?’ Stanley wondered. “They kept the garden nice and made sure we all had names and played with us every day. Wait, they didn’t,” he gasped.
“Yes, they ate the apple they were told not to eat. It was the only rule and they broke it. And now not only are they cursed, they brought the curse on all of us.” So he learned to crawl without his legs right over to Adam and Eve.
“Look at me.” He said to them. “My beautiful legs are gone. I look stupid like this. What are we going to do? Is there any hope for us?” He pleaded with the two very sorry humans. Finally, Adam turned and looked into Stanley’s eyes and smiled and touched his head. There was love in his eyes, and hope.
“I know you are sad. We all are Stanley.” Adam said to the little snake. “But God will not leave us to perish. He loves us too much for that. Before we were punished, he gave a promise that some day, his own son will come to earth and make it all like it was before. He will defeat the evil snake, Satan and defeat death and make everything perfect again.”
“He will?” Stanley said almost crying in happiness at that news. “Maybe then I will get my legs back.”
“Don’t worry Stanley.” Eve said picking him up so he could slither around her fingers. “You look cute like this and we will all take care of each other until the Son of God comes and fixes it.
“I promise to take care of you too, and Henrietta and Morris and all my friends.” He promised and when she put him down, he coiled around her toes. He was still sad but now he had salvation to hope for. And besides, he kind of liked being cute without his snake legs. At least for a little while.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. [John 3:16-17]