I’m sorry but I just don’t like restroom hand dryers.  Hey, I want to save the planet too, but isn’t there another way?

Yes, I know about the study – dryers installed in Topeka, KS schools saved 34.5 tons of solid waste and 587 trees in a year. * (But they were school kids. Do they ever wash their hands?)

What about noise pollution?  A dryer produces over 80 decibels of sound. * (a Boeing 747 on takeoff is slightly more soothing.)

And forget about hygiene?  In 2009 a study was conducted by the University of Westminster.  They found that after drying hands with a warm air dryer, bacteria on the palms increased by 254% while a paper towel reduced it by up to 77%* (Who needs a petri dish?)

They also found that the jet air dryer, which blows at speeds of 400 mph can blow micro-organisms from the hands onto other people up to 2 meters away. * (Plus, it’s creepy to watch 400 mph gusts blow across your hands. My skin rolls like the tide.) 

I don’t like them, and I don’t like the vandals who scratch out the letters “on” from the little sign that says, Push Button Here. 

But my biggest irritation is this: I sometimes hold my dripping hands under the dryer, and nothing happens.  The all-seeing sensor does not sense them.  I, therefore, jiggle my hands a little.  Nothing.  Am I the invisible man? 

So, I move them again, this time using sign language to say, “I hate this thing!”  Still nothing. 

The guy next to me got his to work, so I try his as soon as he moves.  It ignores me too. 

Evidently, I do not exist.

Truth be told, I can handle that kind of treatment from a hand dryer.  It’s when I get it from people that it really hurts. 

As I get older, I seem to fade from the mix.

– I am not approached for advice as I once was

– my favorites are no longer sung at church

– politicians seldom court my vote

– my opinions may be quickly brushed aside in a discussion

– and the product label with the tiny font was definitely not sized for my eyes

It feels like I don’t exist – or at least don’t matter – and yet I know I do.

The apostle John told me so.  He wrote, “See what sort of love the Father has given to us: that we should be called God’s children – and indeed we are!” -1 John 3:1 (NET Bible ®)  

John was enthralled and astounded by the fact that God would call us His children.  He wanted me to feel the thrill as well – to know that I have been born to royalty and am entitled to the privileges of a prince.

There was a time when my youngest child was playing on the playground of the church that I pastored.  Another preschooler jumped on the swing that he wanted, so my son put him in his place.  He said, “Hey my dad is the boss here.” 

Well I wasn’t, but he didn’t perceive it that way.  He believed that I was in sovereign control and since he was my son, I would, therefore, govern things in a way that benefitted him. 

So naïve about me, but so perfectly descriptive of our heavenly Father.  He is sovereign.  He is beyond powerful and superbly wise and He governs things in a way that benefits those that are His. 

Being a child of God is the best.  It’s as Tim Tebow says, “I’m so thankful because of my relationship with Jesus Christ and being adopted in the family of God that I don’t have to live the highs and the lows and the roller coaster that the rest of the world lives, because my identity is as a child of God, and that’s something that will never be shaken.”

So, the next time a hand dryer fails to recognize me, I will wipe my hands off on my pants and remind myself, “So what? I am a child of God.” 

* Stats from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hand_dryer