The Pastor’s Piece – December 8, 2019
Fellowship of Christian Farmers
December 8, 2019
Ready or not, Christmas is upon us. It came fast this year.
I have a friend who vacations in Jamaica at Christmas time. One year he told the Jamaicans it was 20 below back in Wisconsin. Their reply: “Below what?”
Speaking of cold – Last Sunday we had five people get baptized at our church. I had filled the baptism tank the night before and turned the heater on “high”. The next morning when I arrived at church, the water was a little on the warm side so I turned the heater off expecting it to cool down by the time the service began. But when it came time for the baptism, the water was still a little too hot, so we added some ice to it. The people waiting to be baptized were in another room when they saw me putting ice in the tank and thought they were going to get baptized in ice water. They were relieved when the time came, to step into warm water. That would have been an eye opening experience.
Christmas memories – Several years ago, on our way home from Grandma’s house on Christmas Eve, the battery light came on in our car. After a short distance, the car started sputtering and I had to turn the headlights and the heater off in order to keep the car from stalling out. I raced down the highway in the dark at breakneck speed, hoping to get back to our house before we froze to death or died otherwise. Speeding down the highway at night with your headlights off is frowned upon by the police. So I got pulled over. The officer was sympathetic to our situation, and gave us an escort home, flashing lights and all.
On another wintry adventure, I had a similar situation occur. This time, my son and I were in our truck when the battery light came on. We were out in the middle of cell tower nowhere when the truck sputtered out. I managed to coast off the road and down a lonely driveway, coming to a stop right in front of the owner’s shop. No one was home when I knocked on the door of the house and the shop was locked up tight. But I could see through the window they had a battery charger sitting on the workbench right next to the door – extension cord and all. If only I could get to that charger, I could charge my battery for a few minutes and be able to make it home.
I remembered as a kid watching Starsky and Hutch on TV and how they could magically open locked doors with nothing but a credit card. So I tried it. To my amazement, and I’m still not sure exactly how, the door opened. Not wanting to get arrested for breaking and entering (even though I hadn’t broken anything), I went back to the truck and wrote out a quick note explaining my predicament, attached a ten dollar bill to it, and taped it to the window on the front door of the shop. That way, I reasoned, in case the owner came home while I was in his shop, he would know I meant him no harm. I then charged my battery for a few minutes, locked up the shop, left the note and the money, and made it home safely. I stopped back a few days later to explain my situation, but again, no one was home. Only this time, there was a steel clasp and padlock on the door.
Before my wife and I had children, and while we were living in Phoenix, Arizona, we drove a Z-28 Camaro. It was loaded with a V-8 engine, glass T-tops, and power everything. We bought it five days before Christmas and since we had a new car we decided to drive it 1800 miles back to Wisconsin for Christmas. We left after work that night and drove straight through the first 24 hours, stopping in Kansas City to spend the next night. From there, it was a short eight hours home. One of my most memorable moments of that trip was watching the sun come up over Texas as we headed east toward Amarillo. After driving all night, that was a sight to behold.
Another memorable trip was when we had to borrow a car from a friend because ours was too small to accommodate guests. Family had come to visit and since we could only seat two adults comfortably in our car, we borrowed a purple Plymouth station wagon from our friends for a day trip.
On our trip, I stopped to gas up only to realize the car had a locking gas cap and I didn’t have the key. I’m really not a very good criminal, (despite my previous encounter above), because try as I might, I could not pick the lock on that gas cap. They make those things to lock on and stay on. I don’t remember exactly how I got it loose, but I remember it took a trip to the hardware store to purchase a hacksaw and a tire iron to accomplish the feat. I guess where there’s a will there’s a way.
This Christmas we’re not planning to travel to do much traveling. The kids will be here and they’re hoping for snow while I’m hoping for green grass. Our church activities will have us hopping until Christmas morning, when we will relax in front of the fire and enjoy the quietness and ambiance of the day.
“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call Him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”) – Matthew 1:23.