The Mothman is living in the trees behind our house.
At least, that is what I am telling our grandkids.
Recently, as Terry and I sat on the patio, we noticed this certain visage among the trees. To me, it looks like the Mothman. To Terry, it looks like Sasquatch. Regardless, it is a keenly imaginary, yet uncanny, sight from the distance and angle we have from it.
Most people in Point Pleasant and the area on both sides of the Ohio River are familiar with the legend of the Mothman and its association with the unfortunate collapse of the Silver Bridge on Dec. 15, 1967, in which 46 people died.
But, before some of you think about coming to my house to take a look, I can tell you what it is. A large, brown-bark oak tree had a large section of its top broken, and when the broken section fell, it got lodged in the tree’s massive fork. That is all it is — it ain’t a Mothman. I climbed the side of the hill to take a close look at the particulars.
But, from our distance of around 100 yards and angle, the coloration is blackened. The broken section lodged in front of the forks appears as a ghostly head, and the part hanging behind appears as a demonic tail. The two fork sections look like huge shoulders. To me, it looks like what I would imagine to be the proverbial Mothman unfolding its wings for flight. Only the Mothman’s reported red eyes are not evident.
What that tree looks like, however, brings to mind a biting question as it concerns what the current state of spiritual, moral, economic, and political affairs presently look like in the world. What does it look like to you?
Sadly, most people associated with the Church are not paying much attention. They read the newspapers. They watch the news programs. They listen to the radio programs. But, despite the world being on the edge of collapse in a variety of ways and for a variety of reasons, they ignore the details that otherwise should serve as a forewarning that the spirit of anti-christ has drastically changed things, and it is at a stage where it could become full blown in effect.
What does it look like to you? Does it not look like that the world is closer to the time of the Second Coming of Christ? Does it not look like that the world is closer to the seven years of Great Tribulation? Does it not look like that the player-nations of Armageddon are being set up to come against Israel?
Consider what the Bible indicates about the army of the north coming down against Israel (Ezekiel 38-39). And, then compare that to how Russia has in recent years re-flexed its military muscles, and has asserted itself militarily in the affairs of Syria in much closer proximity to Israel. Consider how supportive Russia is of Iran’s nuclear capabilities within the context of the Middle East.
If you go to Church where God’s Word is preached — if you read your Bible — if you are paying attention to current events, what does it look like to you?
When it came to our Mothman tree, I took a close look. I climbed the hill. I got close enough to where I could identify what kind of tree it is. I got close enough to see that what formed the appearance of the head and tail was the broken top of the tree. I was keenly interested about knowing what I was seeing.
That is what the people associated with the Church need to be doing. We need to look closer at the times and conditions of our country and the world through the eyes of God, who has the necessary closet look. Then, the reality of what it looks like will take on greater urgency for faith and witness for the contemporary Church.
In the meantime, I thought that pictures of our Mothman would be a rather compelling sight to our oldest grandson, Justus. But, apparently, he is nonplused. I have not heard a report from the other grandkids yet.
The Rev. Ron Branch is pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Mason, W.Va