Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Grandpa Z, Dad, Daniel and Me
Late 70's

I am a fourth generation “Tea Totaler”, meaning that for over 150 years my side of the family line has never used alcohol of any kind. Originally it had nothing to do with a moral standard or being a Christian. The family did not find Christ until about 75 years ago. For unexplained reasons, great great grandpa Z pronounced (in Austria no less) that Zimmermann’s would no longer use alcohol in any fashion. He was a ranking officer in the Austrian army and was totally unaccustomed to explaining orders. The family gossip about this decision was lost two generations ago but still, we do not drink alcohol. When my grandfather came to this country and became a Christian in the 1930’s Prohibition was a big issue for Christian’s but not for us. We didn’t drink anyway, but it was added to the list of thou shalt nots. I still don’t drink. I suppose I could, I just don’t want to. I have a bottle of Blackberry Brandy in my cupboard that I take like medicine when my chest is congested, but when I can breath normally, I have zero interest in it. I have been doing this for almost 30 years. I just bought my third bottle last week which means a) I have been fairly healthy and b) I really don’t like the stuff. So that’s just me. As a follower of Jesus I do recognize His strong command to NOT be drunk with wine. Suits me fine, never even had a slight buzz…ever, that’s right, not even once. When your only bottle of booze last 10 years on average it is hard to get a buzz going that long between treatments! So am I special…not really, ok not at all. Especially when you read the command in it’s full context.
Eph 5:18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.
So I guess I’m not doing to badly on the debauching part, but the second half, being filled with the Spirit is lacking. I’m afraid to many of us are really pretty good at avoiding debauchery but really bad about being filled with the Spirit. Then again, maybe it’s just me.


heidi jo said...

you know what is ESPECIALLY funny about this? when i went to reply to your post my internet filter stopped and asked for my password to continue because alcohol/tobacco content. :) never thought you'd be filtered for that did you?

what i actually wanted to say was simply that YOU are special to ME. :)

i remember a time at the beginning of marriage in texas when i was soooo sick for about 2 weeks (plus - the worst of it was about 2 weeks). i had the worst sore throat, chest pain/congestion, cough of my life! jason kicked me out of bed and sent me to the spare room i coughed so bad. i was MISERABLE and couldn't sleep for the nonstop cough - sick, feverish, miserable, and now exhausted from sleeplessness for days -i was nearly delirious and tearful. my mother in love told me about brandy. i got half a mug's worth warmed up with honey. it burned my throat like hot fire but THAT actually felt good my throat was so sore! the only time i wasn't coughing was the few seconds after a tiny sip. i hoped and hoped THAT MUCH brandy would knock me out because i was DESPERATE and crying... like you (though a higher dose!) :) not so much as a buzz. even that much branding and the few seconds of relief around each sip and it was short-lived. i remained miserable the rest of the night... and that was strong stuff!! (and not too tasty!!!!) i finished the bottle during that illness but don't really now how much it helped in the longrun - it just helped to give me seconds of relief on my throat... yucky stuff.

heidi jo said...

how could i forget to say how nice it is to see that photo linking the generations. and look you all young and handsome with those fancy sideburns. ;)