I take care of Grandpa on Sunday mornings so the kids can go to church. We watch some of the televised religious programs like In Touch with Charles Stanley and Power Point Ministries with Pastor Jack Graham, that is unless Grandpa’s too groggy.Yesterday morning, he was totally out of it, so before Claire left for church, she helped him back into bed after breakfast for his power nap. He missed all of his programs, but I recorded them so he could watch them later.

I didn’t know, because neither one of them said a word to me, but Grandpa gave Eric a real hard time about getting up, yesterday. He told him he shouldn’t go to church, but instead attend church at home like “other” people do on Sunday mornings. Unimpressed by his feeble attempts to dissuade him, Eric firmly told him, “I’m going to church and you’re getting up!”

There’s not much you can do when your 6’4″ grandson is towering over you with a determined look on his face. John 21:18 puts it this way, “I tell you the truth, when you were young, you were able to do as you liked; you dressed yourself and went wherever you wanted to go. But when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and others will dress you and take you where you don’t want to go.” Unfortunately Grandpa is forced to go with the flow on Sunday mornings – and that flow is get up and go.

Grandpa generally wakes up around 8:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. weekday mornings, you can almost set your watch by him, but Sunday mornings, he is extremely hard to rouse. Doesn’t it figure? The one day we need everything to run smoothly like clock work, Grandpa is having one of “those” mornings. One thing I remember from having babies is you can always count on the the baby to have a rough night, especially when you have to go somewhere early the next morning. Lately, it’s the same with Grandpa. Sunday mornings are beginning to turn into a bit of a battle ground.

And, just when I make the observation that Grandpa rarely complains about arthritis or old age maladies like “the rheumatism,” he complains that his shoulder was hurting him all night long – from “arthritis,” no less. It’s possible that he pulled a muscle or something, but Grandpa is a bit of a hypochondriac and we tend to downplay whatever is ailing him, if it doesn’t bother him for more than a few hours.

We have often said that we’d love to have a 24-hour surveillance camera – a “Grandpa Cam” –  installed in his bedroom so we can see what shenanigans are going on during those supposedly “terrible” nights when he doesn’t get any sleep. I’m not downplaying his discomfort, but we are aware that the slightest symptom may be used as ammunition to solicit sympathy for not getting out of bed in the morning – especially Sunday mornings.

For instance, on Veteran’s day, Grandpa was pretty tired the whole day, sleeping most of it away, until Eric said, “Gee, Grandpa, it’s too bad you don’t want to wake up today, I was going to take you to Applebbe’s. They have a special for Veterans today, your dinner is free!”

Grandpa opened his eyes real wide. “Really?” he said, “I’m awake!” and off they drove to Applebees where Grandpa had a tasty steak dinner – his favorite. It touched my heart that Eric would take Grandpa out when he already spends so much time with him everyday. So you see, if Grandpa has a good enough reason, he will be extremely cooperative and push himself to get up. Eric needing a break from “Grandpa care” to go to church is obviously not a good enough reason to get his 90-year-old self out of bed. Truth told, Grandpa is being ungrateful – and a bit selfish, but at the age of 90, that’s to be expected, and it’s our job to keep lovin’ on him because even Jesus was kind to the ungrateful.

I love what it says in Luke, 6:35 “But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men” NASB. Not that Grandpa is evil – at all, but he does have a tendency to display an ungrateful spirit every now and then, especially Sunday mornings. I think, I smell a rat…