I usually live life on an even keel. I once had an odd keel, but fortunately, I had the good sense to throw it back into the water from whence it came. I take pride in maintaining a certain sense of balance in my life. But, there are those times when all balance is thrown out the window.
Just this past week when I was enjoying an unusually wonderful sense of balance in my life, the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage changed my whole demeanor.
We were watching the news on television. When I say "we," I am not insinuating in any regard that I was paying any attention whatsoever to what was happening on the television screen. I usually have a book in hand I am perusing while I am allegedly watching TV.
Out of nowhere, I heard her exclaim, "They just wouldn't do that."
I continued in my book and paid no attention to her.
"What in the world is wrong with those people?" I heard her say.
By now, my curiosity had gotten the best of me and I laid my book down and said, "What has got you all riled up tonight?"
"Didn't you hear what they just said?"
"I'm sorry; I was looking at my book."
"Well," she said in a very disgusted manner, "the government is thinking about taxing junk food. Can you imagine anything more ludicrous than that?"
I always like to at least try to think of the positive side of things. With the way our beloved politicians have been going these days, it is very hard to find the positive side. Although I am not in favor of taxes, I know that as a citizen I need to pay my fair share. I have no problem with that. I'm not, however, in favor of tacking on some new taxes. What's wrong with the old ones?
Then my wife said something that turned my thinking all the way around.
"You do know what junk food is, don't you?"
That was a crazy thing to say. Of course, I know what junk food is. I stay away from that food category and pride myself in eating healthy food every day. No junk food for me, thank you.
I shrugged it off at the time and replied to my wife, "Oh well, the government has to do whatever it has to do in times like these."
"You do know that apple fritters are considered junk food by our government? And when they start taxing junk food they will be taxing your apple fritters."
"They don't. ...
"They wouldn't. ...
"They better not!"
At this point, my even keel was experiencing some very turbulent tendencies. I try to be a good citizen but there comes a time when a person has to put his foot down. I had come to the point as that old philosopher, who said, "That's all I can stands, I can't stands no more!"
What I want to say to good old Mr. Uncle Sam is simply, "Do not touch my apple fritters. Some things in life are sacred and for somebody to fool with them will only rile the anger of those religious people devoted to Apple Fritter Veneration. Believe me; you do not want the Apple Fritter Gang to get riled."
The creed of these Apple Fritter Followers is simply, an apple fritter a day keeps the blues away. Nothing cheers the day like starting it with a freshly baked apple fritter. Regardless of the problems I have to face during the day, if I start with an apple fritter, the day seems to go much better.
Now, Mr. Uncle Sam, let me explain some of the facts of life to you.
First, "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness" is one of the most famous phrases in the United States Declaration of Independence and considered by some as part of one of the most well crafted, influential sentences in the history of the English language. These three aspects are listed among the "unalienable rights" or sovereign rights of man. Everybody knows that the phrase "the pursuit of happiness," is a reference to apple fritters. No more pure form of happiness exists then enjoying a freshly baked apple fritter.
And another thing, why blame the lowly apple fritter on the debt problem? I have been associated with apple fritters most of my life and I have never known an apple fritter to spend money it does not have.
I have given this a lot of thought. Apple fritters are not responsible for the debt problem in our country, but rather, politicians are responsible. My thought is simply this: Instead of considering apple fritters as "junk food," why not consider politicians as "junk politicians" and tax them. That would make much more sense.
Out in the real world, everybody operates along these lines; if you create a debt, you have an obligation to pay that debt and not shove it off on somebody else. The only ones who do this are all those "Junk Politicians" who have no sense of how much a dollar is really worth, let alone where it comes from.
I still stand by the words of Jesus: "And he (Jesus) said unto them, 'Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's'" (Luke 20:25 KJV).
Mr. Uncle Sam, touch my apple fritter at your own peril.
The Rev. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, 1471 Pine Road, Ocala, FL 34472. He lives with his wife, Martha, in Silver Springs Shores. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.whatafellowship. com.