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Another Day Late And 396 Short This Time
by James Snyder
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No day is complete for me unless I forget something. It does not matter what I forget as long as what I forget disrupts my day in some way. Rare is the day in May when I forget to forget something. Of course, I can't forget those days when I can't remember what day it is.

The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage has brought this to my attention on many occasions. For example, when we are about to start on a trip and are nicely settled in the car, my wife will look at me and say, "Did you get everything?"

This irritates me to no end and glaring at her I mumble, "Of course I got everything."

Then, to drive the knife deeper, she returns my glare and demands, "Are you sure?"

Without saying one word, (that's just the kind of guy I am) I back out of the driveway and begin our journey. Two blocks down the road I stop the car and turn around.

"What did you forget?" my wife taunts.

Of course, I forgot something. What would one of our trips be without returning to the house for something I've forgotten? We may never know.

I can't tell how many meetings I have missed because of failing to write them down in my appointment book. Even ones that do find their way into my appointment book run the risk of flying into the face of my forgetfulness.

Invariably, I will meet someone at the grocery store who will query me; "I missed you at our meeting yesterday. What happened? You didn't forget did you?"

I flash a smile while thinking of some excuse of why I missed the meeting. Usually it's, "I thought that meeting was tomorrow."

I have a long list of excuses I use in such emergencies. Some are standbys for any emergency, while others are one-shot excuses. How many times can a person use the "I was kidnapped and taken to Albuquerque" excuse?

Not only do I forget meetings, which can be inconvenient at times, I also forget other things.

Last Thursday, for example, I needed to visit several people in the hospital. Rushing out the door, I told my wife I would get lunch at the hospital before making my pastoral visits. It would save a little bit of time and I was in a hurry, as usual.

As I got to the door my wife asked, "Do you have everything you need?"

For some reason she has the idea that every time I go out the door I forget something. Really, I don't know where she comes up with some of her ideas.

I threw her a big "yes," jumped in my car and headed for the hospital. In a minute, I set aside her question and concentrated on my appointments for the day. If I have more than one person to visit, the chances are rather high I will forget to visit one of them. If there are more than two, the level of forgetfulness rises dramatically.

I got to the hospital and the first thing I did was go to the cafeteria. If I am anything, I'm a man with my priorities in order. I picked up a tray and selected several delectable items for my lunch.

When I got to the checkout counter the bill came to $5.96, so I absentmindedly reached into my wallet to get the money only to discover I had a grand total of $2. To be short $3.96 in a hospital cafeteria is terribly embarrassing, especially when there is nothing on your tray that can be returned.

I remembered earlier that morning my wife laying a $10 bill on my dresser and reminding me to put it in my wallet. "You might need this today," I recall her saying. I was shaving at the time and made a mental note to pick it up before I left the bedroom.

I have to be mental if I think I'm going to remember such a note.

Standing in the cafeteria line, I could see the $10 bill resting quietly on my dresser in my bedroom. Really, I had the money to pay for my lunch but not on my person at the time.

Have you ever noticed when you are in such a situation the business in question does not take credit cards? I pulled out four different credit cards, my AAA membership, my library card and a discount card for my favorite bookstore. But cash? All I had in my wallet was two moldy dollar bills. I didn't even have loose change in my pants pocket.

I heard someone chuckling behind me. I turned around only to see my old friend, Bill, with a smile dancing under his nose. "Forget your money?"

I smiled a pathetic smile, knowing I had been caught $3.96 short for lunch.

Looking at the cashier, Bill chirped, "I'll pay for his lunch today."

Forgetting some things creates chaos in everyday living. Some things, however, are worth forgetting. The Apostle Paul understood this when writing to the Philippians.

"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:13-14 KJV.)

When I remember what Jesus Christ has done for me I can forget some of the things I have done against Him.

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Member Comments
Member Date
samuel saalwaechter  03 Jun 2005
Memorize Scripture Then you can forget about everything else. Then #1.You can quote it to your wife so she’ll realize you’re not forgetful. Of course you have to memorize whole chapters so you won’t have so many address’s to remember, which causes problems remembering which verse is which. For this I just quote the chapter without giving verse numbers. #2. You can tell those who ask, if you forgot, that you’ve had this important scripture on your mind that you are memorizing. Quote a few verses that they can easily check out, so if they check, they will see what you are doing. Next time they ask, just add a few more verses from that scripture. #3 It builds self confidence. (just maybe I’m not forgetful after all. Now what was I think? Oh yes, This was really nice story!! "Thanks"
Corinne Smelker  03 Jun 2005
Love the line about being kidnapped! James, I am one of your greatest fans - I look forward to opening my email on Friday and receiving the message that you have posted a new article.


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