Observations From the Chaplain’s Perspective
Rev. Donald P. Barnes, Chaplain
This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118: 24
“Don’t forget the sunscreen! Is there room for my guitar? Grab the cards and the dominoes!” Vacation. For
many years, the Barnes’ Family have made a yearly pilgrimage to the Outer Banks. All year long, we look
forward to the first week in June. Swimming, relaxing in the hot tub, collecting shells – you know the routine.
A little R & R does the mind and body good. Six days with the wind and waves serves to adjust one’s
perspective on living. We always have a great week! Boy, do I enjoy myself!
Preparing for the journey requires some effort. Packing suitcases, taking the dogs to the kennel, informing the
neighbors, etc. A lot of loose ends to tie together prior to pulling out of the driveway. Don’t want to forget
anything. I also make special mental preparations. In order to get the most out of a vacation, one must adopt
the proper frame-of-mind. Why is it that the days seem shorter when you’re really enjoying yourself? Don’t
want to waste a single minute. Before hitting the highway south, I resolve to make the most of every minute of
The other day, I was waxing philosophical. Would it not be great if we could live every day like we are on
vacation? Then I thought, what’s stopping me? Isn’t it all about adopting the proper state of mind? Rise early,
full of excitement and energy. Look to the bright side of every challenge and difficulty. It’s the lens through
which one views life experience that ultimately shapes our perspective.
Consider this funny, yet thought-provoking story, author unknown:
A man was driving in the country one day and he saw an old man sitting on a fence rail watching
the cars go by. Stopping to pass the time of day, the traveller said, “I never could stand living out here.
You don’t see anything, and I’m sure you don’t travel like I do. I’m on the go all the time.”
The old man on the fence looked down at the stranger and drawled, “I can’t see much difference
in what I’m doing and what you’re doing. I sit on the fence and watch the autos go by and you sit in your
auto and watch the fences go by. It’s just the way you look at things.” Yes, be thankful for everything.
Remember, this day is a gift our loving God has shared with us. Gifts are not to be squandered or taken
for granted but enjoyed and appreciated. Have a great day!