For as long as I can remember, I have always looked forward to Monday. Throughout the years there have been very few Mondays that I have missed, although there are some Mondays I miss. After a long weekend of labor, I enjoy the slow pace that Monday brings with it. I can sleep in as long as I want, do anything my little heart desires and just simply enjoy the day.
It is the one day of the week when the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and Yours Truly can just take it easy and enjoy the day together. Sometimes we enjoyed the day together and sometimes we enjoy the day going our separate ways. Usually, my way goes by the bakery to sample a freshly baked Apple Fritter. As an Apple Fritter connoisseur, I need to constantly study and keep up-to-date on the world of Apple Fritters. Since this is not on my wife's diet, I save her the awkwardness and only go there when I am by myself. It is not that I am trying to hide it; I am just thinking of her.
Lately, something has been messing with my Mondays. In fact, it is becoming a little bit to the point that I am about to mark Mondays off my calendar. Then see what Monday will think of that.
It began several weeks ago. It was a Monday afternoon and I needed to visit someone in the hospital. Usually I do not do this sort of thing on a Monday, but sometimes you have to do what you do not normally do. I went to the parking place and discovered there was only one parking slot, which was just as I went in through the gate. It was a tight squeeze, but I finally got my truck parked. Everything seemed in good order.
After making my hospital visit, I returned to my truck to leave. I knew I was in a tight spot but, after all, I have been driving since Henry Ford said, "Let's take this buggy for a spin." With the care that years of experience have afforded me, I backed out of my parking space and just as I did, I heard something crack. I pulled forward and much to my chagrin, I had backed into the gate and broke it in half.
I parked my truck and went into the hospital to turn myself in to the hospital guards. They came out, looked at the damage and discovered I had broken the gate in two. After two hours of filling out paperwork, taking photos and generally standing around admiring the damage, I was free to go home. It was late Monday afternoon and I was ready to call it a day. Oh, what a day it was.
It took me almost a week to recover from that. On the following Monday I got up as usual to enjoy the pleasantry of the day. It was late in the afternoon and I was at a small strip mall to do a little shopping. I went in to a West Indian store to buy an ice-cold soda. It was one of those hot days begging for a cool drink.
I got my soda out of the refrigerator and went to the counter to pay for it.
I greeted the young woman behind the counter, we exchanged a few pleasantries and then I crossed the line. I do not often cross the line, but for some reason I did. I asked her how her day was going. I should note that this is an absolute no-no, especially on Monday.
"Oh," she said with a cheerful bounce, "this has been a wonderful day. Nothing has gone wrong today and I'm most grateful for that."
I should not have done it, but I did it without thinking. I smiled at her and said, "I sure am glad for you." I then handed her a dollar to pay for my soda. She opened the door to give me a quarter change and as she did, she pulled the entire money drawer out of the register and everything went all over the floor.
All I could say was "keep the change." I could have waited around for her to collect the money and put it all back into the register drawer but then, what more damage would I cause in that store in the meantime? The best part of valor at that point was to vamoose.
And, vamoose I did, valiantly.
How well I remember the time when I looked forward to those carefree Mondays. Now, I go to bed Sunday night with a certain level of apprehension for what the next day will bring forth. My Mondays are not quite as carefree and peaceful as they used to be.
I remember what my father used to tell me. "Son, when trouble comes a knocking, don't answer the door." At the time, I had no idea what he was talking about, but now, after several Mondays of what some might call misfortune, I am beginning to understand what he meant.
I have something new to look forward to, "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God" (Hebrews 12:2 KJV).
No apprehension here at all.
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.