I read a lot.

I’m a pastor and that’s what we do. I’m a fan of Dr. Seuss and Horton the Elephant, in particular. Horton is a great Christian, “He says what he means and he means what he says. An elephant is faithful 100 percent.”

Recently, someone I love a lot sent me a copy of Dr. Seuss’ "You’re Only Old Once." The subtitle is: A Book for Obsolete Children.

I had never read the book but it has become a new favorite. Where ever Fott-fa-Zee is I want to live there.

My point is when we read fiction context goes out the window, but when we read Scripture, it is a holy must. And what I’m really trying to say is these are real people we read about and they are not any different than you or I. That’s important.

For example, in Luke 5 Peter had been out fishing all night. Fishing is his occupation, so after a hard 8, he is ready for a night on the couch. He’s tired the same way you get tired. Jesus asks Peter to let Him borrow a boat so that He can address the crowds better.

Peter agrees and what’s not there is Peter is probably standing in waist deep water holding the boat for Christ while He preaches to those on the bank. After that Jesus tells Peter to throw out his nets again (after a night of unsuccessful fishing).

Really?! Peter does it, and we know the story of a great catch.

Here’s the deal. We get tired and we use it as an excuse, we choose disobedience rather than obedience. Therefore we miss the blessing of breaking nets. This doesn’t have to be. I read somewhere that we can do all things through Christ (Philippians 4:13), but we can’t let our excuses (tiredness, fear, etc.) get in the way.

I like Mary and not just because she’s the mother of Jesus. It’s her attitude that matched her actions that impress this tired, cynical pastor. In Luke 1, she’s told of all the stuff (not necessarily good) that’s going to happen to her. God is going to borrow her unmarried, virgin womb, impregnate her through the Holy Spirit, without the consent of her fiance or a Facebook post and she says, “Okay.” Mary literally has skin in the game.

Peter with Mary like obedience has skin in the game too. What’s your excuse for not enjoying the blessing and favor of God? Who doesn’t like breaking nets and babies?

It’s our choice. If I don’t see you before Monday, “Merry Christmas!” He told me to tell you that.