Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Cat in the Hat plus John Owen

This coming week at Winter Break, I will be at the school doing something musical with the children.  At fall break, they did Peter and the Wolf.  At Christmas Break, they did the Lightlings by RC Sproul.  This week, I think I will do the Cat in the Hat Comes Back, the sequel to the Cat in the Hat.  I'm still trying to figure out music to go with it, but that will come.  Sometimes, the kids can give good suggestions.  They did at Christmas.  Did you know the "Sound of Silence" can be a good song to go with the Lightlings?  It is.  And did you know that I can make a spiritual connection between Dr. Seuss's famous sequel and John Owen?  I can.

First, the Cat in the Hat Comes Back.  Sally and her brother are shoveling snow while mom is out.  The brother narrates and nobody knows his name, so I'll just call him Ted since that is Dr. Seuss's real name.  Ted and Sally are shoveling, and the Cat in the Hat returns, slinks into the house, and starts eating cake in the bath tub.  Ted comes in and chews the cat out.  He drains the tub only to find that it left a pink ring on the tub.

Not to worry, the Cat cleans it up with mom's nice dress.  Then he transfers the pink from the dress to the wall, cleans it with dad's shoes, gets it on the carpet, the bed, and then he gets stuck.  Then he pulls Little Cat A out of his hat and in each cats' hats, is a smaller cat all from A to Z.  They finally get the pink out on the snow but with all their efforts the stain keeps growing and growing and growing until all the snow is one pink blob and still Ted and Sally have made no dent in their shoveling.

Finally, when all is said and done, the Cat announces that he has one last solution.  In Cat Z's hat is a tiny cat named VOOM.  Voom is released and cleans all the snow and perfectly shovels a path to please the kids' mom.

Our lives have stains, too.  I read The Mortification of Sin by John Owen a few times, and really the only thing I can remember from that is his famous line, "Be killing sin or it will be killing you."  Ted and Sally somehow let a cat into their house who stained everything.  Their own efforts were not getting rid of the stain.  The little cat A through Z kept trying to kill it with pop-guns and fans and brooms and lawn mowers and such, but the stain kept growing and growing.  Finally, the Cat in the Hat had to give up.  There was nothing he could do.  Just like that, there is nothing we can do about our sin.  All the penance we can do can only cause it to grow and our pride to swell until we have to give up because on our own efforts, we cannot please an infinitely holy God.  The Cat finally had to get Voom, and we have to surrender to Jesus.  Only Jesus can make our sins white as snow.  His blood is cleaner than us when we've had a shower.  And only his blood can make us perfect like him in time for God to send him back to judge the world.

In fact, he must save you before you even can make a decision to surrender to him.  Without that, you will simply keep shoveling in vain and die in your sins.  He must save you.  There is nothing you contribute to your salvation.  It is all from God.  Read chapter 2 of Ephesians.  It is by grace you are saved and not of your works so that nobody can boast.  We were once dead, and dead people can't make decisions.  But Christ has to make us alive and we have to obey him by getting the Word of God to people's ears so that the Holy Spirit can change their hearts.  He is much better than Voom.  He's real.  And he does all things perfectly.

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