8 Apr 2008
Normally, which is a very hard thing to define, there is very little dancing in our home. Occasionally we have a little victory dance when something goes right. That does not happen too often. Then of course, there is that nighttime dance when I stub my toe trying to find the bathroom. This dance is accompanied by a very poor imitation of an Apache war melody.
Apart from this, dancing is not something we do.
According to the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage, dancing is for those who haven't anything better to do. I remember the first time she said that I asked what she thought was better to do, and she gave me a 10-page to-do-list. I don't ask anymore.
This no dancing rule was recently shattered by some news we heard.
We were both snuggled in our favorite chair, she with a good book in hand and I tenderly fondled the TV remote. My favorite sport is surfing the channels. I was passively watching the news, which is the only way you can watch the news these days. I wish someone would invent some way that the viewer could choose which news he or she wanted to hear at any given time.
Then a news story came on which captured both of our attention. To get both my wife and I captured with the same bit of news borders on a miracle comparable to parting the Red Sea.
Briefly stated, the news was that our Dear Old Government (D.O.G. for short) was going to send to every taxpayer a rebate of $600. Then somebody tries to say that the government is broke. Ha! That just shows how much they know. I know that when I'm broke I do not have any money to give away.
When my wife and I heard this, we spontaneously jumped from our chairs and did a little jig around the living room. I cannot remember the last time we danced so enthusiastically.
We then spent the next few hours excitedly discussing what we were going to do with this cash windfall. I don't know about anybody else but 600 bucks is a lot of capital. It's not every day that a DOG throws a bone to humans. Of course, I like a little more meat on my bone, but what is the use of complaining about this. "Don't look," my wife said, "a gift horse in the mouth."
I did once and it turned out to be a nag.
After a period of excited discussion, we got up and danced a little more. This time it was the Rebate Rumba. I've never dance this before but it rather came instinctively. My wife and I were quite natural in this dance. I'm sure it would win no prize on any dancing competition program.
Then the Rebate Rumba turned into a very frenzied two-step. "A rebate for me, and a rebate for you, and the cash goes round and round."
When the excitement of this news waned a little bit, we began thinking about the significance of this. Then a strange thought gripped our mind. When was the last time our D.O.G. ever did anything they said they were going to do? Remember: "Read my lips?" This thought sobered us quite dramatically. For one, we had already made plans for that rebate. And, our D.O.G. needs to understand that when my wife makes plans she writes it in ink.
I will not say that she is immovable with her plans, but it would take more than a Supreme Court decision to change her mind. Does our D.O.G. know whom they are dealing with?
Personally, I do not think they are dancing around the truth or anything like that. For one thing, they would not know the truth if it arrived in a stretch limo. And for another, it is hard to dance when you have two left feet. And the only song they know to dance by, "Don't step on my porkbarrel shoes."
Another thought hit us. Where are they getting this money to give to us? What money does our D.O.G. have? They are not in the business of making money but rather collecting money. Now, where do they collect this money from they plan to give away? Could this be a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul?
Instantly our living room dance floor changed from the Rebate Rumba to Bawlroom Dancing.
Once my mind settled down a little I began to think a little more soberly about this idea of free money. Just about everybody wants to be rich. All of their problems will be solved with money. Yet, reality tells us the money causes more problems than the lack of money. Riches bring to us greater problems and trials than anything else.
The Bible warns us along these lines.
"Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;" (1 Timothy 6:17 KJV).
"Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days." (James 5:1-3 KJV).20
Rev. James L. Snyder
We have gone back to our no dancing in the house rule.