I started writing this two weeks ago, hoping that before I finished it, I’d know the end of the story.
It was a Sunday afternoon. That means the dog and I had an appointment for a nap, but man’s best friend was away visiting other family and friends, including her real owner, so I had carried on by myself and, still somewhat in a post-nap fog (a surreal state not to be confused with prayer or holiness), was working a little on the computer.
The television had been on. Earplugs, handy little things I usually carry with me for moments when life needs to be improved by silence, had worked well during the nap. But now I was listening and watching a little, a bit hooked by the show featuring people neither my wife nor I much liked doing stuff neither of us much cared about. (Pretty much a definition of TV these days.)
Not much else in television’s wasteland was much better, but as another episode was cranking up, I retreated to the kitchen bar to keep on playing with some work.
Some minutes later, I heard a distinct POP! And my beloved exclaimed, “Uh oh! I think the TV just died.” To which I injudiciously replied, “Good.”
I think she scowled at me. I know I would have scowled at me. But I did a little more of what I was doing, drank in a little silence, and then “Googled” the brand of our TV and “pop.” That returned a ton of hits featuring the phrase “pop of death.” This was not encouraging.
Long story short, I kept searching the Web for diagnosis and “how-to” notes. (If YouTube has a good video on it, I’d be willing to try performing a simple appendectomy on someone I’m not particularly attached to, should the need arise. (Come to think of it, with the coming health law tsunami, that may be … )
I found good instructions, got help lugging the now-dimmed household idol off its exalted altar, took out thirty screws, detached some ribbon cables, removed the “main board,” ordered a new one from eBay, and pulled down from an upstairs bedroom a postage stamp-sized temporary TV replacement. And waited.
I’m thankful for good instructions. I’m grateful for the experience of others who’ve already sailed down waters I’m trying to navigate. And, though my kids make fun of me for heading straight to the Internet whenever the computer glitches, the dog eats chocolate, my tooth comes uncrowned, etc., I’m thankful that information is easily available. Why wouldn’t I search for it and use it?
By the way, if you want to gain access to our Creator’s wisdom, you know a great place to go, right? On your table, in your pocket, or on the Internet, it’s called the Bible. Every page points to the Son through whom this world derives meaning and purpose and hope. Its words point to the Word.
I spent several days wondering if that new main board would work once it showed up and I put it in. It did. You never have to wonder about God’s promises. They always work. And the warranty never expires.
Curtis Shelburne is pastor of 16th & Ave. D. Church of Christ in Muleshoe. Contact him at