While I’m on a cartooning kick, I thought I’d share a little preview of Creacher. Sometimes the words come first, but in this case I just started off by drawing the characters and let them speak. I just started to look at the things I know and the things I wanted to share. These are some of the things I know and now you know them too.
If you subscribe to my webcomic Creacher, you may not want to look at this post, or maybe you’ll want to take the sneak peak.
I started off thinking I was going to do a lot of quotes from other people and decided I would just do my own. These are some heartfelt (and hopefully humorous or thought provoking) ideas that I hope will touch and bless you.
If you don’t subscribe to my web comic, now here’s your chance.
What do you do when you’re out of ideas and you need to create. One of my favorite things is to hit the Scriptures. Case in point, this week I was having difficulty coming up with the content for next week’s Creacher cartoons. Where oh where could I find short pithy sayings for cartoon “gags.” Well considering I want them to be humorous but with a solid point, why not the book that holds some of the great wisdom of all time, the book of Proverbs? I am reading through them as part of my devotions right now and before long I had a week’s worth of cartoons written and ready to go.
The Word of God is a great source for Christian creative projects of all kinds. The trick though is knowing what’s in there and where you can find it. Of course there are tons of sources for finding what you’re looking for in the Bible, but there is one thing that will trump them all…
Picking it up and reading it.
My church is doing trunk or treat and I decided to decorate my trunk with one of my favorite things to create, creatures. I have always loved making creatures because the possibilities are endless. You can literally create anything you want. For the longest time I could not see how this connected with my faith, but then one day I was preparing to preach in a “King James Only” church. My text revolved around 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation…” Well in the King James, “new creation” is translated “New Creature.” There was my answer. I could use the creatures I create to talk about being a new creature in Christ. After a few false starts, I settled on the name CREACHER because it combined Creature and Preacher, and also it had reacher in the name and that was my intent, to use creachers to reach people for the Kingdom. Well I decided to ramp up CREACHER and give out cards to the site along with my candy. The new version includes a meme, a coloring sheet and a color download available free on the site. You can see them for yourself at the CREACHER website along with my pop art and some other cartoons.
This one made me think of the old joke:
Q: “How do you keep an idiot in suspense?”
A: “I’ll tell you tomorrow.”
I know it’s a little mean and yet it’s funny in a strange sort of way. It’s a little deception, a little bait and switch, a set up. You bite on this one thinking you are going to hear a funny joke, but you don’t realize that if you fall for the joke, you will be the butt of it. Fall for it and you get burned.
That’s sort of how sin is. You bite on temptation thinking you are going to experience some pleasure. but if you fall for it, you get burned by it. There are lots of set ups in life that aren’t funny at all. Be careful what you fall for. Temptation can leave you feeling like an idiot.
I posted the above cartoon to my Facebook page yesterday and in hindsight it may have been a mistake. Once again it seemed to offend which really wasn’t my intent. I saw yet another report on the Occupy demonstrations, it worked on my nerves and I began to wonder once again how these people have time to wave signs all day and if their lot in life might be improved if they laid down their signs and started to actually do something about their lot in life. Yes I know massive over-simplification, but I have always had a visceral reaction to any movement that involves chanting and waving signs. Yes I know Dr. King proved me wrong on this decades ago, but I still kind of see the civil rights movement as a rare exception to my “no sign waving policy.” (That policy is a personal one, I am not advocating censoring anyone else’s free speech.)
In defense of my own position on the occupy movement, the photos of the young man defecating on the flag and another attempting to do it on a police car and numerous other reports of indecent behavior and violence have not helped them in my eyes at all. Yes I know a couple bad apples don’t spoil the whole bunch but I also know I’ve often felt like as a minister, I’ve been lumped with every fallen priest and televangelist and that’s not fair either, but I digress. Venting with your gift is sometimes a bad idea.
My original intent was to post that cartoon, with the one below, but for some strange reason I waited to create the second until this morning. The point of the two cartoons is this: You have a right to protest but is there a better way to do what needs to be done? There’s a lot of talk about the one percent versus the 99 percent but this condition will always exist. We live in a fallen world. Even if we took back all the income and gave everyone the exact same amount, making everyone financially equal, it would take about a day and a half for the process to begin again. Greed will not be beaten by making everyone equal. Anyone who remembers the cold war and communism knows that to be true. Karl Marx’s “panacea” had to be maintained by guns and secret police and it still didn’t work. Greed is powerful and it manifests everywhere.
When will we stop trying to make heaven on earth? Wait, that’s the wrong question. When will we realize that lives don’t get closer to heaven by gaining more stuff? In the middle of the Lord’s prayer it talks about “on earth as it is in heaven…” On earth as it is in heaven involves submitting our wills to God. We don’t take to the streets screaming for life to be fair, we take what we have, give thanks and share it. The best way to defeat greed is not taking from the greedy, (because they will make a point of getting it back) it’s living a life of generosity. It’s helping the less fortunate. It’s living to make a difference. We need to stop depending on government and politics and corporations and money to do this for us. These things are the idols of the age and if we look to them, for solutions we are looking in the wrong direction. I’m convinced that the best way to affect change is to follow Jesus and share and LIVE the gospel. There is a heaven and this ain’t it. The closest we can get to heaven on earth is to OCCUPY ourselves with helping and loving others. Some day God will make everything right, that was His promise and, in time, He will deliver. In the mean time, we who love Him are supposed to be found faithful helping others, loving others and living for Him, on earth as it is in heaven.