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Keith Wishum: The good old days again

Do you remember a time when you didn’t know what the word “stress” meant? The following reminders were sent to me by email. No author was given so I can’t give credit. The words aren’t mine; the memories belong to all of us.

Close your eyes, and go back in time. Before the internet or the computer, before semi-automatics and crack, before SEGA or Super Nintendo — way back.

I’m talking about hide-and-seek at dusk, Red Light — Green Light, Red Rover, running through the sprinkler, wax lips and mustaches, and watching Saturday morning cartoons — Fat Albert, Road Runner and Bugs. Back when around the corner seemed far away, and going downtown seemed like going somewhere. Remember running till you were out of breath, laughing so hard that your stomach hurt, jumping on the bed, pillow fights and spinning around to get so dizzy that you fell?

War was a card game. Water balloons were the ultimate weapons. And baseball cards in the spokes transformed any bike into a motorcycle. It was magic when dad would “remove” his thumb. Decisions were made by going “eeny-meeny-miney-mo.” Mistakes were corrected by simply exclaiming, “Do over!”

Ahh, those were the days. I had no worries. Did you? But was it the era that made us stress free? Weren’t there bills to pay, jobs to keep and children to worry about even then? It was a stress-free time for me, not because of the time, but because I was just a kid. The worries weren’t my job; they belonged to someone else.

There lies a valuable truth. I was ignorant of stress because I trusted someone else to take care of everything — my father. Money problems were Dad’s deal; I just collected my 50 cents allowance. Bills were something ducks and dads had, not kids. The Korean Conflict and war in Vietnam? I paid little attention. Dad watched the news; I watched “Combat” where Little John and Sarge always came out OK.

Your Father above invites you back to the “good old days” — back to those days before you knew what stress was. “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5 :6-7).

Got worries? Stressed out? Maybe it’s time to let your Father take over. Have you talked to him about it?

Keith Wishum is minister, Williams Road Church of Christ, Americus.