Due to a night owl and a mouse, I crave the new earth. Allow me to explain.
I don’t do well with rodents. I once had a cat named Natasha that was supposed to stand guard over my house while I was sleeping, protecting me from the mice I knew were there. She was terribly ineffective. Arrow Exterminators was effective, but I still felt bad for their poison methods. They’re brutal. (Never Google what poison does to animals.) Yesterday I found out that we have a mouse in the cabin, and neither Natasha nor Arrow are at my disposal. So we had to go with the traps.
Bless Larry’s heart, he had to set them. They kept snapping at him with this horrible noise. He placed them around the kitchen sink, which is all of 2 arm lengths from where we sleep. I was already dreading hearing that sound in the middle of the night. And heard it, I did.
Snap! “Larry! Please wake up! It’s the mouse. It got him.” Followed by squeak, squeak, lots of grunting, shuffle, shuffle. Why is it making that much noise?! “Seriously, Larry. Please get up, I can’t stand it!”
Sparing you any more details than necessary, it only got his tail, so Larry threw him out the front door. And I didn’t sleep for another hour as I actually prayed for the Lord to bring in the new heavens and the new earth where I wouldn’t have to kill and expel his created mice (disease carrying, food eating, defecating everywhere mice) from my dwelling.
As for the night owl, don’t worry. I’m not going to tell a story about setting a trap for an owl. (Though I did see one while I was sitting on the cabin’s porch! He was flying low about 3 feet from me. They are beautiful!!) Our church where we are serving this summer has a program called Night OWLS where we hang out for the evening with children with special needs and with their siblings. It’s a gift of a program, and I really feel as though I was the one who walked away blessed and served.
Larry walked away that night with a keen insight. As he lifted a child out of a wheelchair so that he could sit in a fire engine, as he placed the child’s hands upon the fire truck so he could feel its rough texture, and as he turned his head to see the shiny bins (shiny bins!) on the side of the truck, Larry perceived that this is his own posture in the hands of his loving God. That we are broken individuals in need of a loving Father to carry us in our sin and brokenness, to lift us up into places where we can see what’s coming ahead, to lead us to the people we need to reach out and touch, and to turn our heads to what we need to notice. Larry also showed me what I could not see: that these children are a reminder to us of the promise of restoration. God has promised that he will set the world aright. That he will heal the broken.
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face. Rev 22:1-4
So I’m holding out hope today for the night owls and the mice. I’m also claiming this eternal promise for other circumstances that have arisen just this week—funerals, Alzheimer’s, injustice against orphans in Bolivia, addiction, lost college students, tornado victims, and cancer patients. And I hold out hope for myself as well—that the wounded places will be mended and that family and friends that have left this earth will be brought back into communal presence. That tree’s going to bear fruit each month. Heaven will be eternally abundant and whole.