For my wife’s birthday (I am not allowed to mention which one) I surprised her with round trip tickets to her family reunion in upper New York State. Out of courtesy to her, I elected not to include myself in her little vacation. After all, it is her family and that is just the kind of man I am.
I must say I was looking forward to a week in the house by myself, where I could be the absolute boss. Nobody to tell me what to do. Nobody to tell me where to go. For a week, I would be the king of my castle; the captain of my ship; the pilot of my spacecraft.
Actually, I need more than one week to do all of these things.
The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage deserves time off and away from Yours Truly. All year long, she works hard and most of the time has her hands full trying to untangle me from one foil after another. Lately, it has developed into a foil-time job.
The day finally came for me to take her to the airport and see her off. As I kissed her goodbye, my thoughts roved back to the week that lay before me as a freelance husband.
All the way back from the airport I played my Barry Manilow CD. I like Barry Manilow because he can’t Smile without Me. Believe me, a smile creased my clock all the way home.
One difference between men and women, or maybe I should say husbands and wives, is the notion of cleanliness. Wives have the idea that cleanliness is next to godliness. If true, ours is the godliest house on the planet. Even God must wipe his feet before coming into our home.
As a man, I see absolutely no connection between cleanliness and godliness. I do my best thinking, not to mention praying, in the midst of clutter. If godliness is related to happiness, then I am in heaven when I am in the midst of hodgepodge — the podgier the better.
Along about Friday afternoon I was absolutely in heaven. The house was a complete wreck and I could not have been happier. About this time, an incident developed that brought me to my senses.
I was about ready to take a shower when I noticed the soap and shampoo in my shower were gone. I knew reserves are somewhere in our house but for the life of me; I could not put my fingers on any of it. This is by my wife’s design.
Notwithstanding, and I was standing in my birthday suit, I needed to take a shower. Then a brilliant idea struck me. Since my wife has not been home all week, the shampoo and soap in her shower should be in great supply. Snatching my towel from my shower, I headed for hers.
One thing I noticed in my wife’s shower was the variety of bottles. Not wearing my glasses, I could not read the labels on any of them. However, I was not here to read bottles, but to take a shower, and so I disregarded the labels.
I turned on the shower, adjusted the water temperature and began my shower. I reached for the nearest bottle, which I assumed was shampoo. After dousing my hair with a generous portion, I began scrubbing my head. I noticed, however, no suds. I grabbed another bottle and repeated the procedure with the same results.
After using 17 bottles, I finally found one that produced suds.
I remember thinking to myself, what does my wife do with all these bottles in her shower that do not do anything? Nevertheless, in a moment I forgot the whole incident, stepped out of her shower and toweled off.
I made a cup of coffee and settled into my easy chair to watch a little television. As I sat there, I noticed a strange fragrance. This is the difference between men and women. A man enjoys strange smells. A woman, on the other hand, enjoys fragrant aromas.
I smelled a fragrant aroma with a strong tinge of fruit about it. It smelled as if someone had brought me a bowl of mixed of fruit. I knew for a fact, there was no fruit in the house, so this fruity aroma puzzled me.
I got up and walked around the house looking for this bowl of fruit. No matter what room I was in, I could smell the fruit. It was the strangest thing I ever experienced.
Finally, I went back to my easy chair and cup of coffee not knowing where these fruity fumes were coming from. Some mysteries are tough to solve.
Then something hit me right between the eyes. The fruity bouquet was coming from me! I took several healthy sniffs and discovered I smelled like a bowl of fruit. I could not understand this phenomenon. Then I remember the bottles in my wife’s shower.
I went back to investigate and discovered my wife had bottles of fruity concoctions of every variety.
A verse from the Bible came to mind. “But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, well pleasing to God.” (Philippians 4:18 KJV.)
The only fragrance worth dwelling on is a life well pleasing to God.
Rev. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, PO Box 831313, Ocala, FL 34483. He lives with his wife, Martha, in Silver Springs Shores. Call him at 1-866-552-2543 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. His web site is www.jamessnyderministries.com.