Pastor's Blog

A Modern "Mortimer" Lesson, Or Two Posted 12.09.2016

In this, the “most wonderful time of the year” – life still happens.  Just because it’s Christmas we still struggle with our own insecurities.  Just because it’s Christmas we still struggle with….well…I guess rodents.  Let me illustrate.


At the kickoff event for Christmas, I read the story, “Mortimer’s Christmas Manger.”  It is the story of a mouse who discovers the true meaning of Christmas – and that God is bigger and more fun than anything we could imagine.  He exchanges sharing the home’s manger scene with a bunch of statutes for a gingerbread house – all his own. It’s quite a cute story.


I ended up emailing the illustrator a few times before the event, and then once after the event to let her know how well the story was received.  She lives in the UK, but was very kind to respond to my emails.  After the event, I got this note, “Thanks so much. I don't feel very useful to God at the moment…. I am so glad that the book is still being used by God - it was a tricky one to pull off because I never felt confident about the pictures. It took me years to be able to look at it without cringing at my terrible drawing. I don't think it's so bad now I'm glad to say.”


Personally, I love the illustrations and yet even when we illustrate a Christian book for Christmas, we struggle with insecurities.  We all could.  That’s why our focus must be on our “bigger than life God” who is much more fun than anything we imagine.


And then, I’ve been struggling (even as Christmas approaches) with….rodents.  Yes, like Mortimer, but not as cute.  I’ve been getting calls every couple of nights from our alarm company, the motion sensors are going off in the library.  It’s been 4-5 times in the last couple of weeks.  It seems like more, because several are in the 2-4 am time frame.  And that means I meet the sheriff (love those guys and gals) at the church to make sure all is well.  We are on a first-name basis now.  The first call was the night after the Daring Faith commitments – and I did need to make sure all was secure.  Right?


The other night it wasn’t in the middle of the night, but about 7:30 pm.  So I came by myself.  As I stood in the library wondering if someone walking outside might trigger the alarm, there was a noise in the corner by the computer.  Hmm.  And then I saw “Mortimer” scurry down the wires and across the floor and then wiggle his (or her) way behind the beam in the corner and out of sight.  Are you the cause of my sleepless nights?  If so, this is war.


Such is Christmas.  Life goes on and not everything is happens as we wish.  Our work might not satisfy.  A small irritant might ruin our day (or night).  But we cannot forget how big and fun our God is.  He sent His Son.  For us.  Overwhelming.


Don’t let life and our own insecurities cloud the season.  Keep your eyes on that manger.  And yes, it’s after midnight as I type.  Mortimer came again. But I’m not going up there now.



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