It was just another day and I was indulging a carefree moment of complaining about the weather. "I can't believe it's so hot today," I muttered. I thought I was talking to myself but obviously, I had an audience.
Have you ever said or did something not realizing somebody was watching you?
Every time I am in a restaurant eating, I endeavor to remember there is an audience and try my very best not to spill the soup on my lap. Although, I must admit that that kind of lap dance always gets a vigorous round of applause from the audience. Don't ask me how I know.
I thought in my own special way of thinking that I was alone only to find out the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage was within earshot of my remarks. I must say she is rather remarkable. Those "earshot moments" are quite extensive. I will not go as far as to say that she can read my mind, although I think she can, but she seems to know what I am thinking even before I go through the effort and labor of thinking.
I do not know why I even spend the energy thinking on my own. Even when I do think up a thought of my own and go so far as to express it I am always challenged. The challenge is, do not think that way. The challenger is my wife.
Life would be so much easier, not to mention less stressful, if I just would quit thinking my own thoughts. It is when I am thinking my own thoughts that I get into trouble. Life would be so much easier if I allowed someone else to think my thoughts for me. After all, isn't that why men get married? Why women get married still baffles me.
Getting back to my moment of complaining. "I can't believe," I muttered, "it's so hot today." To which, my wife said, "Don't you know it's summer? And don't you know that it's supposed to be hot during the summer?"
I did know that but it did not make the heat any more bearable. Then she said something that rather confused me. I have been confused before. Confusion is a familiar territory to me. But this confusion was different.
"If," my wife said rather sternly, "you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen."
What the kitchen had to do with it being hot outside is way beyond my pay scale. There was a brief moment when I almost threw caution to the wind and asked my wife what she meant by that comment. Boy, am I glad I didn't.
I make it a practice to stay as far away from the kitchen as possible, especially when my wife is present. There is something about a kitchen that makes me rather nervous to the point of dropping her favorite cup and having it break all over the floor. I stay out of the kitchen, heat or no heat.
"If I remember correctly," my wife said as she stared at me rather intently, "a few months ago you were complaining about how cold it was." She was right. It was not but a few months ago, I was complaining that it was so cold outside that I just could not bear it.
"You're going to have to make up your mind." That was a serious admonition from her. For her to tell me to make up my mind sends some very contradictory messages to me. After all, she is forever making up my mind for me. She seems to know exactly what I want at the restaurant and before I can get a word in edgewise or otherwise, she has ordered for me. I'm not complaining. She knows exactly what I want.
"Either," she continued, "it's too hot or it's too cold. Now make up your mind."
I smiled demurely in her direction and nodded in the affirmative. Not wanting to further the conversation I whispered very gently, "Yes, dear." It concluded our tête-à-tête.
Later on in the evening, we were watching television. It was the local news and special report of the day had to do with the record heat wave across our country. "It's been a long time," the weatherman said, "since we've seen temperatures this high. Boy, is it hot out there."
I glanced in her direction as covertly as possible and noticed she was staring at me, just daring me to say something.
There is a time to say something and then sometimes something should not be said at all. I concealed my infectious grin as much as possible knowing that someone was watching me. Under my breath I whispered, “I can't believe it's so hot today." After all, it is summer and it is supposed to be hot. I just believe that everybody has the right to complain about the weather. I also believe that some people have the right not to hear me complain about the weather.
It is a well-noted mark of wisdom to know when to speak and when not to speak.
Solomon in the Old Testament had it right when he said, "Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding" (Proverbs 17:28 KJV).
So, this is summer, but you did not hear it from 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.