Wednesday, 27 August 2014 07:11
The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and Yours Truly finally exercised our right to a vacation and planned for a whole week to spend with our son and his family. Preparing for a week vacation takes about six weeks prior to the vacation and then six weeks after the vacation to get caught up. I do not know how people take vacations all the time.
It was to be a great week of relaxing and spending time with our son and his family in the state of Ohio. Ohio is remarkable for a lot of things but when my wife and I think of Ohio we think of one thing: our grandchildren.
Someone once remarked that grandchildren was God's way of apologizing for our children. Maybe that is so, I do not know. If so, I gladly accept His apology. All I know is it is wonderful to spend time with grandchildren. The important thing about being a grandparent is discovering the skills necessary to adequately spoil your grandchildren within a week's time frame. Secretly, my plan is to get back at my children for their childhood in my home by spoiling my grandchildren in their home.
Revenge is sweet and wonderful.
It was about the middle of the week and my wife and I were sitting outside enjoying the cool weather. All of the grandchildren had been snuggled down into their beds for the night. It certainly is tiring to spend the day with grandchildren who have no shortage of energy and whose tongue is a well oiled machine and does not know how to be quiet.
Our ears were still tingling from the day's childish verbiage extravaganza.
We were sitting in the backyard sipping some hot coffee, enjoying the quiet evening when I heard this buzzing sound on the left side of my head. Automatically my hand swatted in that area and I went on drinking my coffee as though nothing had happened. I thought perhaps the kids were still up or maybe it was a flashback from the afternoon.
My wife looked at me as though something weird happened, but we continued enjoying the evening atmosphere with only the soothing sounds of sipping coffee.
Then I heard the buzzing sound again. This time it was on the other side of my head and as I swatted I began to realize what was happening. All of the bugs in the state of Ohio had received a memo that I was vacationing in the state. In well organized shifts they began the welcoming process. Within a short time I was swatting bugs with both hands which did not seem to change the situation at hand.
I know I am a sweet person, but this was becoming ridiculous. I would like to retain my sweetness for something other than bugs.
I am not quite sure how many bug bites I received that night, I stopped counting at 2,973,442 bites. I am not quite certain, but it was feeling more like it had exceeded 3 million bites. If I had a penny for every bug bite I would buy some very expensive bug repellent.
It seemed like they were working in shifts and it got to the point where my mind shifted into a murder scenario. Is it a crime to murder a bug who has bitten me so many times? Of course the real question is, is it really murder? Could it be considered a mercy killing?
And if it is murder, what is the penalty for murdering a bug? I was at the point that I would gladly have paid handsomely for the privilege of putting some bugs to rest.
As a spiritually minded person, I wondered if bugs go to heaven when they die? If they go to heaven, do they continue to bite? And, would it be proper for an angel to swat a bug in heaven?
The mood I was in, after being bitten so many times by these lousy bugs, I had an opposite destination in mind. Since they like fire so much and are attracted to it, I would be glad to accommodate them. I know a place that would fit the situation quite well.
After two hours of fighting these stinking bugs, my sanity, as fragile as it is, was on the brink of collapsing. Once my sanity collapses I am not responsible for what I will do or say. It was hard to find a place on my body one finger wide where a bug had not tasted the delicacy of my sweet skin.
One question I reflected on was simply, what did the bugs do before I arrived? Did they save up all their energy for when I would come and visit? This is not the kind of celebrity status I am seeking. My preference is to be anonymous to all the bugs in Ohio.
All of these insects, whatever they were, were simply bugging me to death.
When I regained some composure, I thought about what it must have been like for Jesus to come into this world. The writer of Hebrews puts it this way, "So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation" (Hebrews 9:28).
So many things in this world bug me, but I have something greater to look forward to, a place called heaven.
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