Matthew 10:16 Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves.
Shrewd is defined as "Characterized by keen awareness, sharp intelligence, and often a sense of the practical." As Christians we need to be harmless, sweet and kind, loving, helpful...but we need also to be totally aware, smart...and practical. We don't need to be stupid to put it in the language of today. We don't have to be taken advantage of. We need to be able to discern the difference in enabling somebody and helping them... we need to educate ourselves in matters of people... we need to be practical. I think this means that we need to take care of ourselves as much as we take care of others... so that we will be able to take care of others. Proverbs tells us all the time to seek wisdom... that means to educate ourselves in the ways of God, and in the ways of the world...we can be a stepping stone for others without being stepped on by others. When we don't know if we are being a stepping stone or being stepped on we need to stop and talk to God about what we need to do next... God knows.... if God doesn't want us to step on others, he loves us and doesn't want us to be stepped on ourselves. So today be loving, and sweet and kind, do no harm... but remember you don't have to allow harm to be done to you in the process.