Don’t say you’ll go fight for me, Mr. Can­di­date

Record Observer - - Religion -

Lately I have been lis­ten­ing to po­lit­i­cal cam­paign speeches, which has helped me catch up on some sleep I have missed in the last two years. Don’t get me wrong on this is­sue. It is not that I am bored with this whole busi­ness. It is sim­ply the fact that if you have heard one po­lit­i­cal cam­paign speech, you have heard one too many.

I once read about a politician mak­ing an im­pres­sive cam­paign speech some­time after the Civil War.

“Fel­low Cit­i­zens,” he bel­lowed pas­sion­ately from his cam­paign stump, ”I have fought against the In­di­ans. I have of­ten had no bed but the bat­tle­field, and no canopy but the sky. I have marched over the frozen ground till blood has marked ev­ery step.”

By the time he fin­ished with his speech ever yone was im­pressed with his il­lus­tri­ous record. Ev­ery­one, that is, ex­cept one old codger in the back of the crowd. Loud enough so the speaker could hear he said, “By golly, if you ain’t done enough fer your coun­try. Go home and rest. I’ll vote fer the other fel­low.”

Our coun­try sorely misses that “old codger.”

One com­mon thread in cam­paign speeches, I have no­ticed, is each can­di­date wants to go to Wash­ing­ton and “fight for me.”

I want to go on record and say that I am not mad at any­one, re­ally. Hon­esty com­pels me to ad­mit that I do not have any char­i­ta­ble thoughts to­ward the Devil, but that is where I draw the line. In many re­gards I am a paci­fist and I will punch any­one in the nose who says oth­er­wise.

That is the trou­ble with our coun­try to­day. Ev­ery­one thinks he can solve his prob­lem with vi­o­lence and looks around for some­one to fight. I am vi­o­lently op­posed to vi­o­lence in any fashion (ex­cept my wardrobe which makes a ma­li­cious fashion state­ment). Politi­cians should set an ex­am­ple and stop fight­ing.

If th­ese can­di­dates want to fight for me, what I want to know is where were they when I was in the third grade and Ricky Cal­la­han beat me up. I sure could have used a fight­ing hand back then. As far as I know, all of them looked the other way while I got my nose blood­ied and I have not for­got­ten.

Time has healed my wounds and I can­not think of any­one I am mad at, with the ex­cep­tion, maybe, of politi­cians who in­sist on fight­ing for me. My ad­vice is, don’t fight for me, Mr. Can­di­date.

I do not need a politician to fight for me, but they could do some­thing, if they have a mind to (and try to find one with a mind).

For ex­am­ple, start with bring­ing me a hot cup of cof­fee each morn­ing. I have a hard time get­ting awake with­out that Java Jolt. My day would be a lot bet­ter with this bed­side ser­vice and I would even sup­ply the cof­fee.

An­other lit­tle chore around the house that needs ex­pert at­ten­tion is tak­ing out the trash. I say ex­pert be­cause we try to re­cy­cle at our home. My wife has a say­ing around our home: A bag for ev­ery­thing and ev­ery­thing in the bag. One morn­ing I awoke and found my­self in a garbage bag on the back porch. I’m sure it was not in­ten­tional.

Each can­di­date has some so­lu­tion to balancing the na­tional bud­get. For­get about the na­tional debt. I could use some help balancing my check­book each month.

No mat­ter how of­ten I add those fig­ures, I never get the same re­sult twice. The best I can do is add up the fig­ures at least three times and then take the aver­age.

Those politi­cians boast of how they will han­dle in­ter­na­tional af­fairs. As for me, time could be bet­ter spent help­ing me with some neigh­bor­hood af­fairs. I am not too con­cerned about the dog in Bagh­dad. The dogs run­ning around my neigh­bor­hood have me all hot and both­ered. I would be eter­nally grate­ful for an am­i­ca­ble so­lu­tion to this prob­lem.

Once a politician is in of­fice, he spends a lot of time pass­ing House bills. Just come and help me fig­ure out my monthly tele­phone bill. The tele­phone com­pa­nies in our coun­try are de­stroy­ing a thou­sand square miles of trees each month just to make the pa­per to bill us. I have no idea what all those fees are on my monthly state­ment. One month I de­cided to call the tele­phone com­pany to ask about my bill. That was in 1989 and I am still on hold!

This is just my short list, and, given more time, I am sure I could come up with enough lit­tle jobs to prof­itably oc­cupy an en­tire fouryear term of of­fice.

I have all but given up on politi­cians. I am sure most of them mean well, but the practical things in life are im­por­tant to the in­di­vid­ual.

When I need practical, per­sonal help, I turn to one place and am never dis­ap­pointed.

When I feel the stress and burden of daily life, I turn to the Lord Je­sus Christ. His cor­dial in­vi­ta­tion is found in Matthew 11:2830, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

I can al­ways count on God to fight my bat­tles.

Rev. James L. Sny­der is pas­tor of the Fam­ily of God Fel­low­ship Ocala, FL, where he lives with the Gra­cious Mistress of the Par­son­age. Call him at 1-866-552-2543 or email jamess­ny­ His web­site is www.jamess­ny­der­min­

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