By Dr. James L. Snyder
During my high school career I was no thespian, however, I could act the fool when called upon. My friend was the thespian and starred in our senior high school play, “Finian’s Rainbow.” One of the musical numbers was, “When I’m not near the girl I love, I love the girl I’m near.”
I have altered this title a little to fit my own needs. My version goes, “When I’m not in the season I love, I love the season I’m in.” It is a wonderful motto and has solved quite a few problems down the years. Just don’t ask me to sing it for you. I can, but you do not want to hear it… believe me.
At my age I have learned a thing or two. One of the things I have learned is that you might as well be content where you are at because that is where you are. All these people that are jumpy and nervous because they are not exactly where they want to be, waste a lot of precious time and energy.
I am old enough to appreciate where I am at. I could bemoan the fact that I’m not somewhere else, but what good would that do. I know I’m not at my destination yet, so I am determined to enjoy the journey and not miss one thing along the way.
This is the difference between the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and Yours Truly.
Just the other day her Majesty was complaining about the weather. “It’s so hot outside, I can hardly stand it.”
Of course, I could not resist saying, “Well, why don’t you sit down.” To which, she treated me to one of her infamous glares. Somehow, in the hot sunshine her glare did not have its normal effect. For one, she was too hot and did not have the energy to follow through on her glare.
But I love the summer. It is a wonderful time of the year and my affection for the season goes all the way back to my days in school.
I enjoy every aspect of summer and when God created summer, he created a masterpiece. Not a summer day goes by that I do not thank Him for the summer.
I need to get one thing quite clear. I am not one of those who lay out in the sun to get a suntan. That is not my cup of tea… or rather glass of lemonade. I do not fault those who lay out in the sun to get what they call a suntan. Rather, I feel sorry for those old saps. Why ruin a good day by laying in the sun?
I had one bad sunburn in my life. It happened on our honeymoon. My wife and I were married in August in the year of our Lord 1971. Upon common consent, we chose for our honeymoon location Niagara Falls.
The motel we stayed in had a marvelous swimming pool. At the time, my companion in nuptials and I thought we were living the life of luxury. This was the first time we had been on our own and we were going to enjoy it to the hilt. Too bad we could not afford a Hilton.
Late that morning we walked several blocks down the street and treated ourselves to our first lunch as a “till-death-do-you-part” twosome. I am not sure what we ate, all I remember is the company was terrific. After lunch, we decided to spend some time at the poolside.
Being unaccustomed to the life of luxury I did not know what the rules were. So, in my sheer ignorance I decided to sit by the pool and luxuriate in the beautiful August sun. Obviously, I was more tired than I realized and fell into a wonderfully deep sleep.
Finally, I began to hear a voice I recognized and soon began to understand some of the words. “Do you know it’s almost time for supper?”
I opened my eyes and tried to smile. My face would not smile. In fact, my face felt rather hot. Then the rest of my body joined in the fiery chorus informing me that every bit of my body was ablaze. I had a sunburn to beat all sunburns. I could not move. I could not get up from the lounge chair.
A short journey into panic-land brought me into full consciousness. With great care and with the help of my new wife I was able to get into our room. I laid down in the bed with every corpuscle in my body screaming in protest. The more I lay there the hotter I became. I heard of hot bridegrooms on their wedding night but this was not how I pictured it.
Fortunately, we had planned to stay in the motel for a week and for a week exactly, I lay in my bed unable to move without excruciating pain.
Ever since that time, I have had a great deal of respect for the summer sun. Even though I had that one bad experience, I have never blamed it on the summer season. Rather, I have reveled in what the Bible teaches. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).
It is in the “all things” that I discover God’s love for me.
Dr. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, 1471 Pine Road, Ocala, FL 34472. He lives with his wife in Silver Springs Shores. Call him at 352-687-4240 or e-mail email@example.com. The church web site is www.whatafellowship.com.