By Dr. James L. Snyder
Since I have reached a certain age, I cannot reveal that age; my energy seems limited. I don’t have the energy I once had. Where it has gone, I have not discovered yet.
I once inquired of The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage where my energy went, and she replied, “Silly boy, you’re over the hill, and so is your energy.”
I almost asked her what that meant, but I didn’t have the energy, and I didn’t have the energy to climb back up that hill.
Not having enough energy does have its good side. One thing is that it is an excellent excuse for not doing something. For example, when my wife asks me to do something that I really don’t want to do, I say, “My Dear, I just don’t have the energy or I would do it.” Of course, she scowls at me because I think she knows exactly what I’m saying.
I have discovered that the word “retired” is something I didn’t understand before. It means that I am tired over and over and over again. How I long for those pre-tired days of long ago. I didn’t understand how tired I was until recently.
A little over a year ago, our great-granddaughter entered our lives. When that happened, the great-grandmother opened “Grandma’s Playtime Center.” Now, the great-granddaughter is at our home during the week while her parents are working.
Seeing how much this little rascal grows within a year has been interesting. Somebody thought they were teaching her how to walk when, in reality, she learned how to run. I open my office door, and before I fully open it, she ran inside before me. My challenge is finding the energy to get her out of my office.
Watching her running all day long it is a very tiring experience. I’m not sure where she gets all her energy but she seems never to run out. If only I could borrow some of her energy, it would be great. It would serve both of us well.
Since she’s been staying with us throughout the week, I’ve realized how truly tired I was. I still come back to that question: where did my energy go? If I can answer that question, I might solve some of my retirement problems.
Thinking back on my former years, I remember how much energy I had when I was younger.
As a young kid, my parents made me go to bed early, and sleeping early was difficult. I sought ways to convince my parents to let me stay up longer. No matter when I went to bed, I still had energy that I hadn’t used that day. Now, as I am older and in that tirement cycle, I look for excuses to go to bed earlier.
It has become a game between The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and me. We try to find new excuses to convince us to go to bed earlier.
Sitting in my chair, I will begin to fake a yawning session. Looking at me, my wife asks, “Are you ready for bed already?”
Looking at my watch and seeing that it’s not even 9 o’clock, I respond by saying, “Oh, no not yet!”
“You will tell me when you’re ready for bed, won’t you?”
I’m not too fond when she puts all the responsibility on me. If I had the energy, I would challenge her, but where do I get that kind of energy?
Occasionally, I will sneak a peek in her direction, and sometimes, I will see her eyes closed. I then say, “You’re not asleep are you?”
She would quickly open her eyes, looks at me, and says, “No, I was just praying.”
Finally, just before the clock hit 10 o’clock, she looked at me and said, “I think I’m ready for bed. I have to get up early tomorrow to take care of our great-granddaughter.”
Only she could come up with a legitimate excuse to go to bed early. If only I could come up with a legitimate reason, but I had to get up early in the morning I might be able to cash in on that.
Usually, I’ll respond by saying, “I’ll join you when I find the energy to get up off of my chair.”
I won’t give up the search for energy. Surely, there is something I can do to tap into some kind of energy. Thinking about this the other day, I remembered a Bible verse. “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).
Based on this, I have learned that waiting on God is the real secret to my daily energy. Like many people, I try to find my own energy and have failed many times. Only God can renew the strength I need to live each day for His glory.