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Do not open the mouth of a snake to see its teeth

Our world is full of dangers. Some things we cannot control, like the Asian tsunami, or road accidents. But there are also times when we choose things which put us in danger. "Do not open the mouth of a snake to see its teeth" is a proverb from the Basotho people of southern Africa.

The proverb means, do not put yourself into a dangerous place. If you have sex with someone you are not married to, you are falling into many dangers including HIV-AIDS. The first time you choose a cigarette or take a dangerous drug, you are going down into a hole that will be very hard to climb out of. These things can take away your health, money, friends or your freedom.

Pressure from friends

Very often we do these things, not because we really want to, but because of ʻpeer pressureʼ – that means: we do something because we are afraid of what friends think about us.

"My friends would light a cigarette and tempt me to smoke, to prove I was a man," writes Jacob, a SOON reader from Kenya. It was twelve years before he found a way to stop smoking tobacco.

In a dangerous world, we need Godʼs help: not only for protection from outside dangers, but also from our own wrong choices. The book called 'Proverbs', in the Christiansʼ holy book the Bible, says that Godʼs wisdom can "give people the ability to make good decisions."

God can also give us the power to say 'no' to things that will hurt us.

Peace inside me, no matter what troubles

We do not need to live our lives alone any more – Jesus offers to help us and be like a best friend or a loving parent to us. "God is so alive and real to me. With him in control of my life, I have a peace inside me, no matter what troubles I have," says Kelita, a singer from Canada.

We can receive these things from God when we believe thatJesus has already paid the price for us to become his children. Living with Jesus is the best safe place to be.