The day began innocuously enough.
Julie, Tabs, Elijah and I had been spending a couple of days with my sister’s family in Atokah, TN (a suburb of Memphis). Julie and I drove to the resplendant and revered home of the late, great, King–Elvis.
Graceland is worth the visit. Not because it is an overwhelming display of wealth, but because it is an amazing commentary on the life of a man who was incredibly gifted by God. Elvis purchased Graceland at the age of 22 (imagine his success) and died at Graceland at the age of 42. Sad. Very, very sad.
Julie and I returned to Gina and Erik’s and spent a restful afternoon culminating with a delicious BBQ chicken feast my sister and brother-in-law put together. After dinner I went outside to enjoy a cigar and a good book. Awhile later I prepared to go inside. On the stoop of the door leading into their house was a snake–a small snake–one that I had not seen before. I called to Erik: “Erik come out here!” Erik and I looked at the snake . . . it was not one that he recognized either (though he did point out to me that it had a pointed head and was probably poisonous.)
What to do?
Erik got a shovel. “Let’s cut its head off and be done with it,” he said. “No,” I replied, “Just get me a leather work glove. I’ll pick it up and throw it into the woods.”
The damned thing bit me! Right through the leather glove!
At first it felt like a bee sting. And then it felt like I had stuck my hand into a hive. When my hand began to swell, my sister, Gina, called 911.
I’m not exagerating . . . one ambulance and two firetrucks later, 10 emergency workers were telling me to “sit down and keep my arm above my heart.”
Turns out the snake I was trying to rescue (now headless–thanks to Erik and his shovel) was a Copperhead. And though their venom is rarely fatal to a healthy adult, it is serious and causes EXTREME pain.
They rushed me to the hospital where (much to my dismay) they admitted me for the night. My arm (up to my shoulder) had swollen to twice its normal size. I wish I was making this up! It seems they were concerned about me going into cardiac arrest or the venom reaching my throat.
After a day in the hospital they released me. I felt like a fool. Did I mention that snakes can bite through leather gloves–even leather boots!?!
Anyhow, I’m fine. Except for the dull “tooth-achey” pain in my left arm as the swelling continues to subside.
Sooo, there are so many analogies. Sin can cause a lot of pain . . . but because of Jesus’ death has been defeated. Or, it only takes one little prick to start a whole lot of trouble. How about, “Just get me a glove”–kind of a guy thing.
Anyway, the adventure continues and I live to tell another story of adventure . . .
And by the way, in the future when I encounter a snake . . . he better hope that Jesus saves ’cause Greg will be showing no mercy.
And how will that conversation go with that next snake in heaven? Sounds too much like my family vacations as with two younger brothers someone usually needed to go to the emergency room. Why is it that I was watching Bindi(the late Steve Irwin’s daughter with my grandson) as she told us that we should not touch any snake unless we were with someone who knew what kind it was. Then on to a clip of her Dad pulling out a water snake(harmless version) and then a very poisonous one that I could not tell any difference between them. Its no wonder people get bit. What is going on in Tennesee anyway as my Mom is there with a convention this week too? Interesting that I would be watching a show about snakes while this was happening to you and my mother being in the same area. Take better care and God’s blessing.
I’m really glad you are ok! You really should have something like this if you are going to pick up any snake you aren’t sure of: http://www.snakecatcherstick.com/
Please don’t go testing the rest of Mark 16: 17-18 and drink any poison!
Silly. You’re s’posed to pick them up right behind the head that way they can’t getcha (a la Croc Hunter…now deceased, but the theory’s sound) }:}~
Since you are alright . . .
That’s awesome! What a story! I have never known anyone who has been bitten by a copperhead before.
Maybe this website would be of some use to you: http://www.tennsnakes.org/
Have a great break!
Man, that hurts just to read it.
Glad you are doing O.K.
Dude I am like ROFL right now but I am also praying with a smile for your quick recovery!
I used to catch Copperheads for a hobby when I was a little kid and keep them in a coffee can. Go figure? :-) Never was bitten; always snagged them real quick just behind the jaws, like LivingDedGrrl said.
Oh well.., get better my friend.
Greg, This must come in second after bungy jumping, Eh? Good greif I’m glad you are OK. God knows you have a lot of work to do here on earth yet!
Sorry to hear of your encounter, but glad to hear you are well. Praying for you and your fam.
Well this has nothing to do with snakes but I thought you would greatly enjoy listening to Paul Scanlon from alm.org.uk. (FREE Podcast downloads) Great speaker.
For Goodness SNAKES!!! :0 I am so glad you are ok. I cannot imagine what that was like for you… Ironically – I am also thinking of what Julie and your kids went through. I am glad you are ok, and their worry is over as well. What a confirmation of an old lesson!!! I know it is written down somewhere in the beginning of the Bible that we are supposed to stay away from snakes. :-)
I was glad to see this wasn’t you ;-)
Snake-handling pastor arrested