Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, July 13, 2019

MVNews this week:  Page 12


Mountain Views-News Saturday, June 6, 2019 


A Weekly Religion Column by Rev. James Snyder




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 



Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Lori Ann Harris

Rev. James Snyder

Dr. Tina Paul

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Jeff Brown

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden

Rebecca Wright

Hail Hamilton

Joan Schmidt

LaQuetta Shamblee


In our house, thunder has a variety of meanings. Some not as good as others, 
but that is another story. Either way, I am not a fan of thunder.

Recently, some heavy thunder visited our area along with rain and lightning. 
I was beginning to un-derstand how Noah felt during his first night in that 
Ark. Some of the thunder was so loud it seemed like it was inside our house.

Thankfully, I lost my heebie-jeebies a long time ago.

 All week long the rain came and with the rain was lightning and of course, thunder. What in the 
world would a rainstorm be without thunder?

 One night the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and I decided to stay inside and enjoy listening 
to the thunder on the outside. Nothing is more cozy than listening to it rain and thunder 
while drinking a nice hot cup of coffee. It is even better when an Apple fritter comes with that 
coffee, but that would create a different kind of thunder on the inside.

 I must point out during this time, young people were breaking into cars, rummaging through 
them and stealing whatever they could find. Even locked cars were broken into and I wished I 
knew how they did that. I have locked myself out of my car several times. If only I had the skills 
of a car thief, I would not worry so much nor call AAA.

 I had my vehicle broken into once and they rummaged all through it. Unfortunately, for them, 
I had nothing of value to steal, except several Bibles and a dozen gospel tracts. Not one of my 
Bibles or one of my tracts was stolen. All that work and they found nothing to steal. I had considered 
putting an offering plate on my seat with a sign that said, “Your tithe goes here.”

 When it comes to robbing vehicles, I have no experience. If I were going to rob a car the best 
time to do it is doing a heavy thunderstorm when nobody wants to come outside.

If I was going to invest time in stealing, which I am not, I would not focus on cars, especially in 
my neighborhood. People keep the dumbest things in cars.

While listening to the storm, it suddenly got quiet. Both my wife and I took a deep breath and 
she said, “I think the storm’s over. I’m going to go out and check my car.”

I really never gave it much thought. I went back to the book I was reading and then I heard it. 
The thunder roared again like I have never heard it roar before. I was waiting for the lightning to 
flash, but again the thunder roared. Of course, I thought it was thunder, but it turned out to be 
my wife moaning in agony. 

 I was rattled, jumped out of my chair and ran to the door to see what was wrong.

It took me a while to figure out what in the world was going on but when I did, I broke out in 
un-controllable laughter. I'm so sorry. That’s the way my clock ticks.

Standing there, I heard my wife screaming, “They broke into my car and stole everything inside. 
What kind of people does this?”

 I rode in my wife’s car many times and I have yet to find something in her car worth the effort of 
stealing. Of course, hidden in a little space on the dashboard are several gift cards for restaurants. 
She always keeps a collection of these so they are handy when we stop for lunch when traveling.

Everything in that car had been rummaged through and trash thrown all over the place. The only 
thing these “amateur thieves” did not find was the gift cards. There they were as neatly as my wife 
had put them. If you would look at that part in the car, you would not know they were there.

In anguish my wife said, “Look at that mess in my car.”

 It was a mess for sure. I had to calm her down and so I said, “Look here, my dear. All your gift 
cards are in place. They didn’t touch any of these. They didn’t get anything worthwhile.”

“That is,” she said rather mournfully, “something to be thankful for.”

She paused for a moment and then said, “Look at that mess in my car.”

The sad thing about the whole situation was her car had been locked. She is very obsessive about 
locking her car at night. She always asks me, “Did you lock your car?”

I wanted to say, but I know when to keep quiet, that her car had been locked and still the thieves 
broke into it. Some things are to be left unsaid which creates a platform of happiness.

 No matter what tragedy hits us, if you look for it, you can find something good. Sometimes it 
takes an awful lot of looking to find anything good in a situation. The effort, though, is certainly 
worth it.

 I thought about what the apostle Paul once said. “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In 
every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 

No matter what the situation, the great challenge of the Christian is to find something to give 
thanks for. A thief can’t steal anything of real value.

Dr. James L. Snyder, pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, lives with the Gracious Mistress of the 
Parsonage in Ocala, FL. Call him at 352-687-4240 or e-mail The church 
web site is

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It’s never too late for a good belly laugh.

July 1 was, unofficially, International Joke Day. The origins of the day are 
unclear, but whoever started it was on to something - because our country 
sure could use a good belly laugh about now.

Which reminds me of the man who walked into a dentist’s office one 

“I think I’m a moth,” said the man.

“I’m sorry,” said the dentist. “But I can’t help you. You need to see a psychiatrist.”

“I am seeing a psychiatrist,” said the man.

“Then why did you come to my office?” said the dentist.

“Your light was on,” said the man.

 I’m not sure where or when social media started making us more strident. But as we share 
ever-more-angry news posts that demonize those with whom we disagree, we are sacrificing 
our sense of humor.

 The political jokes of many late-night comedians appeal to half of the country as their snarky 
nature polarizes the other half - which means those jokes are sarcasm, not humor.

 Humor doesn’t take political sides. Humor brings us together. 

“Anthropological studies have shown that laughter evolved as a way for humans to signal 
friendship and as a way to create and strengthen ties with a group,” reports timeanddate.

Which reminds me of the time Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson went camping.

They pitched their tent and went to sleep. 

 In the middle of the night, Holmes woke up and said, 

“Watson, look up and tell me what you see.”

“Millions of magnificent stars,” said Watson.

“And what do you deduce from that?” said Holmes.

“That life may exist on other planets?” said Watson.

“No, you idiot,” said Holmes. “It means somebody stole our tent.”

 In his book “Anatomy of an Illness,” Norman Cousins reported that laughter helped him 
cure his serious collagen disease. Since then, scientists have discovered that humor really is 
good for our health.

Laughter produces pain-killing endorphins. It strengthens our immune system. 

“A good belly laugh increases production of T-cells, interferon and immune proteins called 
globulins,” reports PsychCentral. 

It also decreases stress.

“When under stress, we produce a hormone called cortisol,” reports PsychCentral. “Laughter 
significantly lowers cortisol levels and returns the body to a more relaxed state.”

But we aren’t laughing enough.

 Which reminds me of the three fellows stranded on a deserted island. One morning, a magic 
lantern washes ashore. A genie pops out and grants each of the men one wish. The first fellow 
wishes he was off the island and, poof, he’s home. The second fellow wishes the same and, poof, 
he’s home too. The third fellow says, “I’m lonely. I wish my friends were back here.”

The wonderful thing about humor is that it is infectious. It promotes good will, thoughtfulness 
and civility. 

 Regrettably, rudeness, anger and hatred are also infectious. They agitate us and tear us apart. 

We must choose humor. We must rise above those who seek to agitate and divide us. 

We must use social media to share fun, uplifting content, rather than derisive and divisive 

Here’s a start: 

A three-legged dog walks into a bar and sets his pistol on the table.

“I don’t want any trouble,” says the bartender, nervously.

“I have no beef with you,” says the dog. “I’m looking for the man who shot my paw.”

Tom Purcell, author of “Misadventures of a 1970’s Childhood,” a humorous memoir available 
at, is a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review humor columnist and is nationally syndicated 
exclusively by Cagle Cartoons Inc. For info on using this column in your publication or 
website, contact or call (805) 969-2829. Send comments to Tom at Tom@


I feared that the upcoming 50th anniversary of the first 
manned moon landing might get eclipsed by other 
celebrations (the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the 50th 
anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the 10th anniversary 
of financier Jeffrey Epstein’s latest girlfriend learning to tie her shoes, etc.), 
but apparently the sky is the limit for Apollo 11 remembrances. 

And why not? This milestone offers something for everyone.

Those of us with enough gray hairs and wrinkles to remember the moon 
landing as “current events” view the New Frontier nostalgically, although 
we now experience some of the era’s buzzwords with a different perspective. 
Nowadays the eagerly awaited “splashdown” has less to do with an ocean 
rendezvous than with the hoped-for results of our latest high-fiber diet.

Youngsters with aspirations of a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, 
and Math) career relish seeing footage of the myriad behind-the-scenes 
folks who made the moon landing possible, On the negative side, 
therapists feel the films may encourage teen suicide. (“Seriously, dude – if 
I ever get a haircut like that one, strap me to a Saturn rocket and aim me 
at a brick wall.”)

Dance enthusiasts are excited that archival material may finally confirm 
that Neil Armstrong’s hastily scrapped original plans for his first words on 
the moon were “Put your right foot in, take your right foot out, right foot 
in and you shake it all about…”

On a related note, linguists and survivalists alike are glad that President 
Kennedy’s 1962 speech gave Americans a challenge that was characterized 
as “hard” -- not “Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.”

Stamp collectors are ecstatic that the United States Postal Service is 
releasing two commemorative stamps featuring iconic images of the 
Apollo 11 mission. Next year, the USPS will issue commemorative stamps 
with iconic images of stamp collectors sitting home alone while their 
spouses are out on the town.

Conspiracy theorists are keenly interested in the anniversary. (“Of 
COURSE, we actually went to the moon instead of filming it out in the 
desert. But the average person doesn’t realize that it was all part of a 
botched scheme to beam deadly VACCINATION RAYS back down on an 
unsuspecting earth!”)

Representatives of a certain fledgling industry hope to capitalize on the 
wistful thoughts of peaceniks who reminisce, “Maybe it cost billions, 
but for a few brief days in July of 1969, the world forgot its differences 
and pulled together.” (“Ahem – it might have been cheaper to have given 
everyone a lifetime supply of marijuana-infused Tang. Just saying.”)

Native American activists, mindful of how painfully slow our manned 
space explorations have been in the past half-century (compared to the 
rapid spread of railroads, highways and communications infrastructure) 
look with bemusement on the anniversary. (“Sure, if Columbus had spent 
three days here, then gone home and 50 years later sponsored a Duran 
Duran concert…yeah, I could live with that.”)

More visionary thinkers, on the other hand, see the Apollo 11 hoopla as a 
jumpstart for manned missions to Mars and beyond. Like the Whos in the 
Dr. Seuss book, certain segments of mankind want to announce to the vast 
universe, “We are here, we are here, we are here…”

Granted, when the bill for the deficit spending comes due, they may sing 
a different tune. (“We are temporarily indisposed, we are temporarily 
indisposed, we are temporarily indisposed…and we didn’t leave a 
forwarding address!”)


Danny welcomes email responses at and visits 
to his Facebook fan page “Tyree’s Tyrades.” Danny’s weekly column is 
distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons Inc. newspaper syndicate. 


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