By Dr. James L. Snyder
Have you ever had a week where everything went just perfect? Neither have I.
Every Monday morning, I plan a perfect week, and I try my best to stick to that plan.
My problem is simple, I do not know the meaning of the word "perfect." So I asked The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage once, she looked at me and said with a smile, "Just watch me."
Recently my week wasn't going very well, and I was getting a little, well, what should I say, grouchy.
Normally I'm never grouchy, so I did not know how to be grouchy until I was at the grocery store and saw the epitome of Mr. Grouchy.
I'm not sure the basis of this guy's grouchiness, but from my point of view, he has practiced this all his life. If there ever was a Mr. Grouchy, it was this guy. At the time, I had a little bit of pity for his wife. But, of course, I didn't know if he was married or not. If he was, she deserves my pity.
Soon one of the employees walked by, and Mr. Grouchy caught him and angrily told him a thing or two, No, make that a dozen, but then I stopped counting. Obviously, Mr. Grouchy knew more about the store than this poor employee. So I would say he was giving the employee a piece of his mind, but he's a sorry person if that was his mind he was giving.
"Is there anything I can do to help you?" The employee asked. After he asked that I'm sure he wished that he had never asked that question.
For the next 10 minutes, Mr. Grouchy lectured the store employee on what he should be doing. I couldn't help but stand in the aisle next to him and just listen to his lecture. I'm sure the store employee learned quite a bit from Mr. Grouchy’s lecture.
When Mr. Grouchy paused to catch his breath the store employee said, "Please forgive me, but I have an appointment to go to, and I'm late for it." With that, he hurried away as fast as ever. I think I know what appointment he had and I'll ask him when I see him.
Even after the store employee had departed for his "appointment," Mr. Grouchy continued the lecturing in his outdoor voice.
Then Mr. Grouchy realized that the store employee wasn't there. So he looked around and yelled, "Hey, where are you? Get back here."
Finally, he went to the checkout counter and told the cashier how miserable his visit was in the store, while she rang up his purchases.
I wasn't too far behind, and I slowly came up to the same cashier to check out my things. I looked at her, smiled, and said, "Aren't you glad there are customers like me?" Then she laughed.
As I got in my vehicle to drive home, I realized that my week wasn't quite as crazy as Mr. Grouchy.
Driving home I was reminded of a verse of Scripture. “This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger;” (James 1:19).
Everybody faces moments of anger. The key is not to let those anger moments control your attitude at the time. When I control my tongue everything else is under control.