My kids and I were out for a fun day of shopping at the mall in Florence, Kentucky. Isaac, 12 at the time, had bought a coat at the Gap. He was carrying the bag with those string handles across his shoulders like a backpack. Cassie, 16 at the time, had found some PJs at Penneys and we were checking out.
Jeremy was running the register. We didn’t know Jeremy; that’s just what his nametag said. He was a friendly guy. Lots of teenage guys were friendly when Cassie was with us. He talked non-stop while scanning the tag and taking our debit card.
In the meantime, the weight of the Gap bag became uncomfortable for Isaac so he started working to get the string handles off of his shoulders. Jeremy, trying to think of the next thing to say, blurted out, “Yeah, you better get that bag off of your shoulder or it will cut your circulation and your arm will fall off.”
My kids’ heads spun around toward me. I kept looking at Jeremy. He didn’t shut up. He asked Isaac, “What’s your name?” When Isaac told him, Jeremy said, “They’ll start calling you one-armed Isaac.”
Again my kids’ heads spun around to me. They’d never seen me chew somebody up and spit them out, but I think they were waiting to see if it might happen. This time I glanced at them, winked, and looked back at Jeremy. We all laughed. He thought we liked his joke. He had no idea the joke was on him.
“God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me.” Genesis 21:6 (NIV)