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God's Penman

The Reverend James L. Snyder is an award winning author whose writings have appeared in more than eighty periodicals including GUIDEPOSTS. In Pursuit of God: The Life of A. W. Tozer, Snyder?s first book, won the Reader?s Choice Award in 1992 by Christianity Today. Snyder has authored 8 books altogether.

Rev. James L. Snyder has a knack for making fun of daily frustrations and will increase your humor aptitude so you too can discover that life is less stressful when you?re laughing. Through these essays, you will realize that humor and religion belong together and that its OK to keep from taking yourself and others too seriously.

In reviewing my schedule last week, I noticed one glaring omission. At the moment I was rather shocked at this lapse, however, I took some comfort in the fact it was not intentional.

The lapse in our week was a romantic evening just for the two of us. Everyone knows a week without romance can be a dull week. As a general practice, the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and Yours Truly try to set aside some time, be it ever so small, for some level of romantic interlude. There are time, however, when due to a demanding schedule a week will slip through our mutual intention.

Immediately we set out to clear our schedule, a Herculean task to be sure, and set aside Thursday evening as our romantic hiatus at the parsonage. Because I had a few days notice, I decided to surprise the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage with her favorite ice cream cake.

Gary Hemsely was running for some county political position ? I've forgotten which one now. What I do remember is that he was a member of my church at the time.

Sometimes a pastor can get between the Rock of Ages and a politician without trying too hard. That seemed to be my predicament with Gary. In all things political, I have maintained one basic philosophy: Ask not what your country can do for you, just get out and vote.

I must admit, there are times when it is tempting to throw caution to the wind, roll up my pant legs and wade into the political arena. After all, Christians were the first ones in the arena in the "good ole days." The problem, as I remember from . . .

This week I celebrate another birthday, which brings me to that auspicious milestone where I am right between 52 and 54. A person only comes to this stage of life once, so I am going to make the most of it.

This year I plan celebrating my 29th birthday. I figure it's my birthday, so I should be able to celebrate whichever one I please. Twenty-nine is the perfect age; this is the third time for me to celebrate it and it probably will not be the last.

Is it just me, or do others have trouble catching up? Just when it looks like I'm almost caught up with some project or my to-do-list, something happens setting me back a few paces. One step forward, as they say and for me 17 steps backward. Or, so it seems.

I don't have any problem whatsoever catching a cold. I once caught a fly in my mouth while preaching, and it is as easy as New York style cheesecake to catch the dickens from the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage. But, catching up is another matter all together.

Two things happened last week that brought this to my attention.

"When in polite society," my grandfather opined, "never talk about religion or politics." Then he would dismiss himself from said "polite society" and talk about nothing but religion and politics.

Mostly, he talked about politics and believe me, he had a lot to say on the subject. Much cannot be repeated in polite society or any other society.

All I know about politics I learned from my grandfather and yet, to this day I don't know if he was a Republican or a Democrat. He prided himself in being an independent thinker.

He was so much an independent thinker that often he would take the opposite side of an argument.

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