educate equip enable
How many of us were troubled in childhood by monsters?
I know I was and that my children were.
Monsters are sneaky creatures.
No one knows exactly what they look like, although most of us could probably agree that they come in various combinations of slimy or hairy, and have a disproportionate number of limbs and eyes.
We can't be certain where they will be found, although it is fairly safe to assume that they like to congregate in dark places and, in particular, under beds.
So what is the exact purpose of monsters?
Do they have a clear job description?
Do they belong to a monsters' union, to ensure equal opportunity employment, or to resolve grievances?
What kinds of things would upset monsters anyway?
When I saw the movie, Monsters' Inc, it answered a lot of these questions for me.
Here are some little known facts about monsters that might enlighten you too.
Monsters have to learn to be scary!
They study their assigned human being to find out what will terrorise them.
They sometimes get it wrong and feel very hurt and insecure when their human targets don't respond as they want them to.
They have absolutely no defence against scorn, being ignored, or laughter.
They become weaker and lose importance in the monster rankings with every failed assignment.
Too many failures and they shrink to the point where they simply disappear.
Apparently monsters have feelings too and are subject to disappointment, sadness, loneliness and fear.
Fear? What on earth could make a monster afraid?
It seems that they are terrified that people will stop believing in them, because that is the only way they can exist.
It's as simple as that: no belief, no life.
So despite how it looks in childhood, it seems that ultimately we really hold the key that determines whether monsters succeed or fail.
How bizarre is that?
First we create something and then we allow it to call the shots in our life!
Looking back, it was relatively easy to deal with those childhood monsters.
Perhaps because they were young and inexperienced, like us.
All it took was a night light, reassuring words from an adult, or perhaps a bottle of magic anti-monster spray kept by the bed.
As we grow older, however, it seems that we encounter new monsters which come to torment us and which don't respond to any of those childhood remedies.
Fear, addictions, betrayals, trauma, rejection, inferiority - the list goes on endlessly and is as individual as we are.
These monsters may come into our lives at our invitation, but once there they can seem almost impossible to budge.
God understands this and, fortunately for us He has chosen to make the only 100% money back guaranteed, monster - repellent, available to us.
God's word, the bible, teaches us that Jesus Christ has overcome the world and everything (including tormenting monsters) in it.
He has given us power, through the sacrifice of Jesus, to overcome all those things in His name.
He reassures us that His perfect love has cast out all fear.
He demonstrates that no monster can separate us from His love.
These are the ingredients that make up this infallible recipe - innocent blood and a body broken sacrificially.
The same ingredients that Jesus chose to supply for us when He elected to be crucified, knowing that we would never be able to find them from any other source.
Here, today, as we eat this bread and drink this cup in remembrance, we have a chance to express our gratitude that Jesus has given us free entry to a new, monster free life, now and for always.