After living peacefully in my home for more than a decade, I finally heard it ̶ the dreaded scratching of a mouse inside the bathroom wall. The nerve of that mouse! Didn’t he know that I hate mice and have absolutely no intention of sharing my living space with any of his kind?
I am not a happy camper, I told my husband in an irritated tone. There is a mouse in the wall and we have to do something now! I know it is irrational, but the sound of just one mouse fills me with the instant worry of having an ever-growing army of mice scampering through the walls, breaking into the house, and playing tag all throughout my cookware cabinet, and everywhere else for that matter. I guess that’s what happens when you have lived in a vermin-infested house in your youth.
At any rate, these things never happen at a convenient time, so it was not until the next day after work that my husband could do anything about my newly declared war on this little enemy. I had everything ready. Put it everywhere, I said… in the house, under the house, in the garage. I even wanted him to take the plate off the garden tub and stick some under there so that the thirsty little mice might find it when coming to lick the pipes for moisture.
Though we had lived in the house for so many years, we had never bothered to look in that spot because there had never been a need. I wish we had. What my beloved discovered was that whoever had cut the hole for the plumbing fixtures had cut it much too large and left it unsealed, and that was allowing cold air to come in unhindered under the floor. No wonder the bathroom was always too cold in the wintertime, year after year.
It is a good thing ̶ or should I say a God thing ̶ that we found this hole when we did. Two days after my husband filled it with foam insulation, outside temperatures dropped to minus twenty degrees with the wind chill. No wonder the mouse was trying so desperately to get in; he was probably just searching for warmer territory, and I can’t really blame him for that. Okay, so I feel a bit more sympathetic now, but I still refuse to share my home with mice.
The moral of this story, dear reader, is akin to the old expression, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth, or in other words, when receiving a gift be grateful for what it is. May I remind you that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). Yes, all things. I guess if the Lord would cause a Donkey to speak for Balaam’s own good¹, he can use a lowly mouse to keep me a bit warmer if He so chooses. And he can use a …..fill in the blank…. for your own good also. One thing is certain; the Lord God truly does work in unusual ways sometimes and we would all do well in learning to recognize His hand in even the most unexpected of blessings.
¹The story of Balaam and his donkey may be read in the Bible in the twenty-second chapter of Numbers.