I am not one to complain, at least when anybody is listening. The greatest blessing I have in life is that nobody really listens to me. Therefore, I can say whatever I want to say and nobody will hear me.
Well, I used to believe that. Certain things have happened that has caused me to upgrade this aspect of my life. Believe me when I say that upgrading any aspect of your life has a price tag to it. Oftentimes that price tag is rather extreme.
Recently, we have been experiencing some rather cold weather in our area. Every morning the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage reminds me of how cold it is outside. As if I did not know it was cold outside.
As I’m preparing to leave the house, she will always say, “Make sure you wear a coat and keep warm.”
I often chuckle, to myself of course, when she makes remarks something like this. Often she will say when I’m ready to leave, “Make sure you drive carefully.” To which I always respond, “Rats, I was planning to drive recklessly today and now I have to drive carefully.”
For some reason she never laughs at me, but just stares one of those stares every husband has come to recognize. Why she thinks she needs to tell me to drive carefully is beyond my pay level, I am sure. Maybe, and this is just a guess on my part, she has ridden with me while I was driving.
If that is the case I solved that a number of years ago. Whenever we go anywhere, I always allow her to drive and we use her vehicle. Now, do not let this get back to her, but I would rather use her vehicle and her gas than my vehicle and my gas.
When we go anywhere, she is the one who drives and I just sit back and enjoy the ride. So where she gets this idea that I drive carelessly, I’m not quite sure.
However, getting back to the cold weather she sometimes tells me to put on a coat before I go outside because it is “shivering cold out there.” Of course, if I put my coat on I am not going to shiver. At least that’s what I think.
I don’t mind one day when it’s cold, but when there are several days in a row, I am quite unprepared for that. After all, I live in Florida and I expect the weather to be warm if not hot. All of this cold weather has brought me to the idea that I want to gather together a class action suit against the governor of Florida because the motto of Florida is “The Sunshine State.” If he cannot provide the sunshine and the warmth, then why in the world is he Governor?
However, shivering is becoming a daily practice with me. At ﬁrst, I really did not like it because my shivering was out of my control. As soon as I step outside my body begins to shiver uncontrollably. For a person my age and size that is a little humiliating. I do not want any part of my body working without my permission.
Once I got over the humiliation of my body shivering beyond my control, I began to see the positive side of it. If you look hard enough, you can see the positive side in everything. It took me a while, but I ﬁnally got to where I began to appreciate the positive side of shivering in the cold.
My wife is always suggesting that I try to lose a little bit of weight and maybe exercising a little bit will help. But I am not as young as I used to be. I think I have earned the time to goof off and do nothing. In fact, I have become quite the expert at doing nothing. If anybody can do nothing, it is me and I do it quite well.
At my age, exercise is a little more than I can handle. I have put myself on a 12-step program when it comes to exercise. Six steps from my chair to the refrigerator, and six steps back to my chair. That is the kind of exercise that I can really deal with.
Then the shivering idea came into my lackadaisical head. I do not often get a chance to pull one over on my wife, and I thought I had a wonderful plan at this point. I practiced for several days so that I could get it right.
Then an opportunity presented itself.
“Maybe,” my wife said as seriously as she has ever been, “you should do a little bit of exercise.”
“I get plenty of exercise,” I said rather smugly.
“Oh yeah,” she said with both hands ﬁrmly placed on her hips. “Where are you getting any exercise?”
“I get all the exercise I need,” I said, “by shivering out in the cold.”
She looked at me for a moment and ﬁnally said, “You know that you’re a mess!”
Paul said it best when he said, “For bodily exercise proﬁteth little: but godliness is proﬁ table unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come” (1 Timothy 4:8).
The best exercise, of course is spiritual. Exercising my faith in God is the most important thing in my life.
[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 firstname.lastname@example.org. The church web site is www. whatafellowship.com.]