My last experience with bed bugs was a close encounter. At the Iowa-Missouri camp meeting, they invaded Sunnydale Academy. Half the rooms down our hall (the hall with small children) had them. Laura and I were seriously praying the little buggers wouldn’t find their way to our room. The room across the hall was evacuated. Maintenance sealed and superheated the room over 100 degrees for hours in order to kill them. The family moved back in and got bit again. So I understand the horror one Cincinatti teen had when he discovered them in his parent’s apartment. Rather than calling maintenance, he took matters into his own hands and tried to burn the bad bed bugs. He ended up burning out several apartments, causing $300,000 worth of damage. While no humans were hurt, I imagine he got at least a couple of the bed bugs. The story is a good reminder that the ends don’t always justify the means. Satan is the ultimate bed bug, and yet God has to be careful in how he goes about getting rid of him. He has to make sure he doesn’t burn down the entire planet, good and bad, in his efforts to exterminate sin. This advent season helps us remember that God has always been careful with how he deals with sin and sinners. That Bethlehem baby came to offer real rest to people who had lived their whole lives trying to sleep on the  bug-infested mattress of sin.

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