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DOWN HOME: Alarm clock should ask: Are you sure? Print E-mail
Friday, April 03, 2009

Since one of our favorite treasures is a good night’s sleep, I really blew it when I woke my wife up almost an hour and a half too early the other Sunday morning.

It happened easily enough, and I’m surprised I never made this mistake before. The clock on my nightstand operates two radio alarms. This is handy, since I get up at one time on weekdays and another time on Sunday.

The switches for the two alarms are side-by-side on the top of the clock. They’re less than an inch — but almost an hour and a half — apart.

So, on Saturday night, Joanna turned out the lamp on her side of the bed, and I rolled over and punched the switch to make the alarm come on Sunday morning.

A few hours later, the radio beside my head began playing, and I hit the snooze button.

Man, I was not ready to get up. The room was dark and cold, and I felt like I hadn’t been asleep nearly long enough.

In the dark, I remembered the song Mother, a devoted pastor’s wife, sang to me practically every Sunday morning for more than 18 years.

Mother expected us to enjoy getting up and going to church, and she apparently thought she could sing us into the mood. So, on Sunday morning, she would let us have it:

Happy Sunday morning,

Happy Sunday morning.

We read the Bible, sing and pray.

Happy Sunday morning!

Mothers can be really annoying sometimes.

Well, when the alarm clock went off again, nine minutes later, Jo started to get up but looked at the clock on her nightstand.

“It’s only 5:30!” she called out in the darkness. See, I somehow knew that night had been incredibly short.

So, I rolled over, re-set the alarm for 6:45 and went back to sleep.

Later, I told Jo about my ambivalent reaction to learning I set the alarm almost an hour and a half too early.

“I didn’t know whether I was happy, realizing I still had more than an hour to sleep, or scared, worrying you might bonk me on the head for waking you up so early,” I confessed.

“Definitely the second option,” she replied. I’m glad she smiled and gave me a kiss when she said that.

As mistakes go, my Sunday Morning Alarm-Clock Meltdown wasn’t so bad.

But still, it’s awfully aggravating.

Sometimes, I think God smiles when obsessive-compulsive perfectionists like me make bone-headed mistakes. It’s easy to get “too big for your britches” (another of Mother’s famous sayings) and lose patience when others don’t live up to your expectations. So, a sleep-interrupting mistake can be a blessing. Too bad Mother wasn’t there to help me stay awake in church.

Marv Knox is editor of the Texas Baptist Standard.

 
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