How To “Do” Shrewd

Last Monday morning began with a phone call from one of our kids.  They are both in college and share an apartment together.  This one visited a friend the night before – watching movies on TV – and was surprised by a masked intruder claiming he had a gun…and would kill them “if”.

Yes, it was scary, and my child was knocked for an emotional jolt.  But they were protected…spared…God was with them through it.  Both of these kids returned the element of surprise back onto the intruder.  All at once, in sync, they rushed him, pushed him out of the apartment and down the stairway, ran back inside, locked the door, and called the police.

We took it as a warning…to be more careful…shrewd.  My advice?

Always lock your doors, be more aware, and be watchful of everything and everyone around you.  Check doors (and windows) again to be sure they are locked!

Early that afternoon, HH left to get gas for the mower.  His call came quickly.  More bad news.  Our sweet Suzy-Q was hit by a car, and she was dead.  It’s been nearly a week, and it felt strange to type that last sentence.

Heirloom Iris Blooms

Suzy was the best farm dog!  And, Winston, our (we thought reformed) professional car-chaser, led her to the road…to her doom.   His playmate is forever gone.

Iris Buds

Suzy, in her gleeful innocence, went to her grave beside Trudy’s – our Boxer who died of old age three years ago.

My reaction to Suzy’s sudden demise was altered by the news of earlier that morning.  I praised God for the years we had with Suzy and for the blessing she was to us – and that we could have been, but weren’t (so, so thankful!), dealing with the death of our child on that day.

Winston now sleeps constantly in his state of depression.  He’ll be OK, in time.

Sad Winston

When thinking of our child’s innocence to the evil in this world and of Suzy’s innocence in the world of traffic and car bumpers, this verse was on my mind throughout the week.

Matthew 10:16

And this snake on the back porch two days later while HH was out of town fits right in with the Matthew 10:14 verse.  (Sorry it’s blurry.  I was shaking a little, I guess.)   God sure can weave a theme into our circumstances!

Cbicken Snake

Our child and our dog were naive in their innocence, and their lives changed suddenly.  I wondered how to teach my child to be shrewd in our world of increasing crime.  With a dog, that’s out of our hands.  But, we can help our children be more shrewd.

To live as Christ would like, we must be both both shrewd and  innocent.  One without the other is harmful.  We’ve seen two examples of innocence without shrewdness, and the results weren’t good.

On the flip side, to be shrewd as a snake without  innocence makes for meanness, as with the intruder and his evil intentions.

I share these things with you today not  for your sympathy but to prompt you to think about your level of shrewdness and innocence, which I equate to wisdom.

We don’t want to lock ourselves inside forever – but when we’re home alone (or with a friend), keeping doors locked is shrewd and wise!  Do you agree?






  1. Penny says

    That must be a lot for your heart to take in all at once. I’m deeply sorry for your loss and understand how painful it can be to loose a companion so suddenly. Thank-you for your quote it helps a lot. I also try to be aware of the wolves in sheep’s clothing but,I think I need to learn to be more shrew.

    Take care,

    My prayers for peace and comfort .are with your family and (of course) for Winston too.

    Sincere regards,


    • says

      Yes, Penny, that was a lot to take in within the span of five hours. We miss Suzy, but we mostly focus on our thankfulness for having such a great dog for nine years. With the early morning phone call, our day could have changed our lives in a much more devastating way! Thank you so much for your sweet prayers. I hope you have a blessed week!

  2. Libba says

    Kim, That is a lot to take in one week. One thing I do is always lock my doors, even when Joe is home, unless we have just stepped outside, or are on the porch. I know that so many people don’t, and it’s so dangerous. Seems people of this world have gone berserk today and you never know what will happen. Proud your kid is okay and you probably won’t have to worry about their not locking the door next time. Sorry about you dog too. I know they can easily become part of the family.

    • says

      Thank you, Mrs. C! I’m glad you keep things locked up. You are right. They are suddenly very aware of keeping the doors locked. Lesson learned! Mr. C shared what you’re doing the next couple of days. We’ll be praying all goes smoothly. We will miss you at JOY, of course, so we’ll look forward to having you back with us next time. 🙂

  3. Mary Jane Welker says

    Kim, It is so difficult to lose one’s pet…several years ago, I had to put my dog down and it still takes its toll on me. Many years ago, our beloved shepherd was hit by a car right before my eyes. That sight and losing our beloved dog was tragic, too. Thinking of this, I am reminded that God was there for your child. Don’t know what I would do if I lost a child. Am always preaching to lock your doors. I lock mine when I am inside the house. We live out in a rural area and don’t know what to expect. God is good and faithful to our needs. Praying for you and yours that you will have complete peace over your loss. Hug your other dog…he probably feels the guilt.

    • says

      Thank you. Like you, I can’t imagine losing a child. And, you and I are in the same boat. Living away from people means we can’t run to a neighbor for help if we need it. I’m glad you keep your doors locked. Thank you for your prayers. God is so good to help us through!

  4. Tammy says

    I am sorry for the misfortunes and happy for the blessings of your family of late. It is sad to see your dog grieving for his friend with no understanding. At the same time I am thankful your child is safe and learned a valuable lesson. I also keep my doors locked at all times, alone or not. Thank you for your post today. It really hit home, with the news of this terrible mass shooting today. This was an evil act that these poor people never saw coming. I appreciate these words as we are facing so much hate and vicious people in the world today. We all need to keep these words close in our heart and minds.

    Have a Blessed day.

    • says

      Thank you, Tammy. Yes, today’s news is yet another example of the evil in our world. But we know the One who has power over that evil. We are safe in His care! I hope you have a wonderful week. 🙂

  5. Nancy says

    Dear Kim, so sorry for your losses. God is always with us in all times. May He help you and all your loved ones. Pets are family too.

  6. Patricia says

    Dear Kim,
    Sending prayers up for you and all your family, 2 legged and 4 legged. There are no words that take away the pain, so I’ll just say love ya and thinking about you.

    From Texas with Lots of BIG Texas Love.

  7. Robin says

    First, I am so sad for you about Suzy. As a dog lover I surely do feel your pain. Poor Winston. I think in time he will be ok. My dog, Budd, was the one led to the busy main road in front of the house by his brother, Bear, when they were just pups. Bear was the one who ran out in the street and got killed by a driver who didn’t stop. Budd was our dog but Bear was a friend’s….we were keeping him til their house was built. We were more watchful after that.

    And about your child! OOOOH my gosh! That is scary! But God is good! You lost a pet but he saved your child!

    The snake was just … Wow. (and CREEPY! We only have garter and black snakes around us, THANK GOD!) And you got a good blog post out of all that to help LOTS of people! Amen!

    I grew up not having to lock my door during the day. It would stay unlocked until the last kid was home. Sometimes that was 2am (when I went out dancing). Then my dad locked it and chained it. My parents still don’t lock their door during the day when they are home. They let in the light from the glass in the storm door.

    In my last house I never locked the door during the day. HERE, my hubby is always on LOCK duty and CLOSE THE BLINDS duty. We are the last house and are next to an open field with woods and farm around us as well. And the next town over (it’s actually a city, a depressed city with reduced sales tax) has ISSUES in some parts. So ya never know who might WANDER over.

    Your post gives me something else to be thankful for. Thanks, Kim!

    I wanted to share this….God spoke to me tonight about an issue we are having with someone ….WWJD? I was sooooo mad about what went down. AGAIN!!! But I stayed cool. It HAD to be the devil. They are not saved people. They did something on purpose. It was irresponsible and immature and selfish. And just plain stupid. AGAIN. Someone could have been hurt. God told me to turn around and go the other way, and SHUT UP. He would handle it.

    It’s an issue that makes it very inconvenient for my family several times every day. So, I came in the house, MAD, but calm, and I could see my hubby gettin ready to get up and go do something about it when I told him what happened. Then I said ,” God said, ‘Do nothing.’ He’s got this. ” We are not to initiate animosity or anything else. Be patient. And tolerant. I believe He is going to allow someone ELSE to have this same issue with these people and THEY will be the ones to do something about it. And we will stay CLEAN and there will be no animosity. Patience in daily inconvenience that shouldn’t even be happening. Whoopie. ha!

    I am just GLAD He spoke to me and I HEARD HIM. For me to be calm from jump is a NEW thing. I used to freak out first, then calm down. NO MORE!!! whooohooo! This is great!

    I love lessons that I get the FIRST TIME. I am learning to TRUST HIM MORE lately. We’re waiting on Him to lead us in what to do with this mold issue. Yes, that is inconvenient, too. I have to wear my “gas mask” (lol) every time I enter the basement. I can’t stay long. I can’t mess with any craft stuff. I have to drip dry clothes in the main bathroom. He has a plan and I am ok with that. THIS is new for me, too!!! 🙂

    He gives us our lessons in ALL kinds of ways! (Even through others!!) We have to pay attention!


    • says

      Thanks so much, Robin. Wow! You did so good, hearing God and then following His direction. I think you’ll see the positive results of that in the future. God always shows us that things work out for the best when we do it His way! And, about the locked doors…so glad you do that now. 🙂

  8. says

    Kim, I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your beloved baby. I am greatiful to know that your child is save. Because of your faith you know, God sents his angles to protect us and our kids to. Your family sounds like a lovely and supportive family. This is a good thing, because between your family love, and support and your faith in God, you know he got this! Keep strong, keep your head up, and most of all, stay strong in your faith, because these times we are living in, we will be tested in so many different ways, but we can, and will always come out ahead so long as we keep putting God first, as you and your family are doing.
    Ivory recently posted…Curtain Header Buckram Strips in 3 Simple StepsMy Profile

    • says

      I appreciate your encouragement and kindness very much! We are continuing on in great faith and trust in God. I hope you have a blessed week! 🙂

  9. says

    Kim, oh my…thanking the Lord for His protection over your child! That must have been very traumatic! Life can change suddenly! I am so sorry for the loss of your faithful
    Pam Richardson recently posted…“The Chair”My Profile

    • says

      Thanks, Pam. God is so good, and I’m so thankful for His love and protection. Monday blessings to you and yours!

  10. says

    Wow Kim what a day that was for you! So glad your child and friend are okay. Sounds like they reacted properly and I’m sure they’ll be more vigilant in the future about safety. So sorry about your dog Suzy. It happens so fast and it’s heartbreaking. My cocker spaniel chased a rabbit that led her right into the road and we lost her too (many years ago). That snake had to have been a bit mind blowing! Take care, Liz
    Liz @ Infuse With Liz recently posted…Restored Garden BenchMy Profile

    • says

      Thanks, Liz. I think they’ll be more careful now, too. As far as Suzy Q, it took a while to sink in that she was really gone. You know how it is. You hear a jingle and you think it’s their collar and tags…and then you realize it can’t be. But this week is better. We’re used to the idea now. We are so happy we had years with her. 🙂