Well, if you are expecting something super-encouraging today, I'm sorry; you will probably be let down. If you want a good laugh (at my expense), then I may be able to help you out. Let me take you back to a night several weeks ago.......
I was sitting at the table in my apartment (Around 11 p.m.), typing some things that God had recently shown me, when I thought I heard a noise at the bottom of the steps leading up to my apartment. Now, before I continue my story, let me give you a brief overview of the apartment. It is located right behind the stage/baptistry. It is accessed by a flight of stairs which begin in the back hallway. There are four stairs, then a landing where you make a 180 degree turn, and then nine more stairs leading to the top. There is no door at the top, so when you reach the top of the stairs, you walk right into the main room of the apartment (which serves as my living room, dining room, kitchen, office, etc.). Then there is a hallway that leads to the bedrooms. (The room I sleep in is about six feet down the hallway on the right, the other one is about fifteen feet farther down the hallway on the left.)
Now back to the story. I was sitting at the table, typing away (knowing I should go to bed, but not wanting to because the thoughts just kept coming, and I was in the mood to keep typing), when I thought I heard a noise at the bottom of the stairs. Now, I am not overly fond of spending evenings by myself, first of all because I like being around people, and secondly because I really don't care to be in a building alone at night! (I am getting used to it, though, and it's not too bad.) Well, I really didn't think much of the first noise, because this building makes little creaks and groans anyway, so I figured that was probably what it was. Well, I heard the noise on the steps once or twice more, and although I still didn't think it was anything more than the building creaking, it did start getting on my nerves! Well, a little bit later, I heard a scuffle at the top of the steps, and I freaked out! I seriously thought someone was breaking in! Well, I was partly right, only the "someone" happened to be a mouse! Now, before you get too hard on me for being jumpy, put yourself in my situation! What would you have done if you were alone in an apartment in a church at 11 p.m., and you heard what sounded like a bull elephant coming around the corner??? (Sound slightly exaggerated to help you appreciate the gravity of the situation.)
Well, after I got over my shock, my fear turned to anger- who did this little dude think he was? He was invading my privacy, and moreover, I had quite a bit of food in the room; I wasn't at all relishing the idea of him relishing my victuals, especially not the chocolate-chip cookies that a dear lady had just given me! Well, I spent about forty minutes trying to find the mouse (he had gone into hiding), and then chasing him when I did find him. (He had gone behind the couch, a mouse's favorite hiding place.) Well, I just couldn't pin him down- it's kinda hard to chase a mouse all by yourself! Anyway, I finally lost him, and had to give up in defeat; I did set two mousetraps for him soon after.
Well, I did not see or hear this rascal for about two weeks, and I was beginning to think that he had left for good; then came Monday night. I was in my room, chatting with my sister on gmail. The computer was setting on the bed, and I was kneeling beside the bed. (This is not the position I am generally in when using a computer, but that's beside the point.) Anyway, we were chatting away, when, without warning, I heard a commotion at my bedroom door. I was convinced that someone was breaking in! Then I saw a dark object streak by me, and disappear under the bed. That was too much for my nerves to handle! (The following is an excerpt from my conversation with my sister.)
I just got FREAKED OUT! A mouse ran within about TWO FEET of where I was kneeling at my bed typing!
chelsy: oh my word!! i can imagine!! did you never catch one? or do you have more than one> buy some mouse traps!
me: I heard a noise outside my door, and I could tell it was something (I literally thought SOMEONE!!!!)
me: I have had traps set since a day or two after I saw the first one!
This dude ran UNDER MY BED!
me: AND THERE IS NO PLACE TO HIDE UNDER MY BED, SO IM THINKING HE MAY BE IN THE BED!
Goodnight, sleep well!
chelsy: okay...you too? hopefully the mouse is not in your bed. didn't you say there is a top bunk?
That is a good explanation of what happened! Chelsy had to go at this point in the conversation, but I was going to tell her that I was not moving to the top bunk just because I thought a mouse might be in the bottom one. (We have had mice in my room at home before; in fact, we saw one in my brothers' bed one time. Sleeping in the same room as a mouse isn't too bad.) That said, I wasn't going to drop the issue. I looked under the bed, where, like I said, there is no cover. Nothing. Then I preceded to dismantle the bed; first I removed the blanket, then the comforter, then the sheet, then the mattress, then the box spring. Nothing. Finally, I made a slight inspection of the top bunk (I wasn't really in the mood to have to put two beds back together, so I didn't tear this one apart.) Still nothing.
(Here are a couple photos of what my room looked like after I dissected the bottom bunk.)
Eventually, I gave up in disgust, and again knelt by my bed. After thinking about my visitor for a little while, I decided that, since there was nothing else I could do about the situation, I might as well pray and go to bed. Well, I had been praying for a little while (mostly about other things, although I did ask God to help me find and kill my obnoxious intruder), when, suddenly, I heard a noise from the direction of the closet. I thought- "YES!!! If he has sought cover in the closet, then he has run into a trap!" I grabbed a shoe, and made my way to the closet to evaluate the situation. Now, this closet is not very big (about 2 1/2 by 5 feet), with just one door- one way in, and one way out. Well, as I knelt down, something caught my eye- I saw a tail (no body, just a tail), hanging out from the bottom of the ironing board. Now, in case you are not up on the anatomy of animals, tails never go places by themselves; there is always an animal attached to a tail. (Or is the tail attached to the animal?) Anyway, I thought, "You dummy! You just ran into a trap!" I took my guitar case, a pair of pants, and some pillows, and made a blockade (pictured below), thus shrinking the field of battle considerably. Then I pondered my next move- should I grab the tail, and thus capture my victim? This is probably what my brother Joshua would have done (He has picked up live mice before, and been bitten by one.), but my courage failed me. So I contented myself with shaking the ironing board a few times, until the furry villain finally came out to offer battle. Actually, it wasn't much of a battle- he just ran in circles while I made wild swings at him! Finally, I connected! After the first hit, things just get better- the mouse got slower, and I began to score more hits! Finally, he went down, never to rise again. I picked up the deceased and carried him to the morgue (aka bathroom), where I took a few photos for his obituary. If you are interested in seeing them, you can scroll down the page at this time.
Usually, a mouse doesn't look this good when I'm through with him. But this one had the benefit of being on carpet; plus, I didn't want to leave a big mess on the floor, so I ceased the beating as quickly as possible.
Apart from his bloody nose, I think he could pass for a live mouse.
It would take me a long time to grow whiskers like that!
"For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tail that is told." (Psalm 90:9)