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OUT TO PASTOR: I thought, but then I unthought

Thinking can get me into more trouble than anything else I do. This was no more evident than recently we got a phone call from the bank.

When I answered the phone all I could say was, “Here we go again.”

Much to my relief it was not about my account, but rather it was the bank account of the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage. I cannot tell you the smile that slapped itself all over my face when I heard this.

Immediately I called my wife to the phone and said, “It’s your bank calling you about your account.” Smilingly I handed the phone to her.

The bank was calling my wife because there had been a suspicious activity on her account.

According to the bank, my wife bought a package of wine costing $600 and they were wondering if she was buying it for the church communion service. I heard my wife laugh and figured out there is something going on. We do not use wine in our communion service, we use grape juice.

“We did not think,” the bank manager said to my wife, “that you were buying wine like this. We thought perhaps you might have been buying wine for the church communion service.”

However, the truth of the matter was, there was this activity on her account in the amount of $600. My surprise was that she had that much money in her account. I scratched my head a bit and thought, where did she get all that money? Immediately I had to unthought that and get back to the basics of our visit here in the bank.

The bank manager got out all of the paperwork with this transaction.

The first thing of note was that it took place in a liquor store in Southern California where my wife had never been.

In looking at that transaction, the bank manager happened to notice that it was on a particular Sunday when it took place. That Sunday my wife was in church. In fact, the time of the transaction was when my wife was playing the organ.

“Can you verify that she was playing the organ at that time?” The bank manager asked me.

A thought that came into my mind was to tell the bank manager that my wife was so talented that she could be in two places at the same time. After further thought on that, I unthought that idea.

The bank manager finally took care of that transaction and we were able to leave the bank knowing us, or rather she, was free from that transaction. I did not say anything on the way home, but I was smiling on the inside.

Thinking can be a very hazardous occupation, but I was reminded what Paul said. “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things” (Philippians 4:8).

I am trying to learn to think about important things and not things that are negative and damaging.

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 The church web site is

Ellis County Press

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