Saturday, June 11, 2011

Deep Thoughts

My sister-in-law is an amazing writer, which is probably to be expected as the writer-editor-publisher of the Courier-Times, our local newspaper serving three small communities in west central Nebraska. But in her weekly column, she goes far beyond the chicken-dinner news and local happenings typical of small town newspapers. She writes about the important stuff.

I might tell you about how great Nebraska is, and what our latest adventures are, or about my love for Deadliest Catch or Mason Douglas... but she is going to put into words the deep thoughts about happenings in the world today, our small town and gently reminds people what's right and important.

So here is a guest post by the writer-editor-publisher of the Courier-Times, serving the communities of Sutherland, Hershey and Paxton:


"There's Still Time"

William Shakespeare said, "My crown is called content, a crown that seldom kings enjoy."

If you've seen any news lately, you've no doubt heard about the huge fire in Arizona that is more than twice the size of Chicago and driven by 60 mph winds. It has created a haze over several states, including Nebraska.

You've no doubt heard of the flooding situation in the North Platte River, and soon to come, the South Platte River. You've probably heard about the flooding Missouri River and the flooding Mississippi River... and perhaps the serious drought in the southeastern U.S.

Add to that the many tornadoes that have already devastated communities in the south and midwest as the tornado season has barely begun.

You may have heard about the horrible e-coli problem in Germany and how they had to throw away so much food... all while trying to learn about this illusive new strain before it pops up again.

You may have heard about the devaluation of the dollar, because they are printing more... that the Chinese (China is our major creditor) are now dumping most of their American treasury investments.

In the middle of all these negative news items... in the middle of what seems to be more chaos than comfort, there is still time to be grateful and enjoy the blessings you have been given right here at home.

Look around you, right now. You are living in one of the best places on earth, in my estimation. You have opportunities to experience things that are far beyond anything our great-grandparents could have imagined. But our great-grandparents had a wisdom that still applies throughout all generations. Here are a few things I learned from my grandparents:

  • Don't let that money burn a hole in your pocket. Save back for hard times.


  • Pretty is as pretty does. Beauty may be skin deep, but ugliness goes all the way to the bone.


  • Treat others the way you would like them to treat you.


  • True humility and grace are priceless commodities.


  • You can't out-give God. If you are a person who is generous, then you will experience more generosity in your life. If you are a person who is more gracious, then you will have more grace in your life. If you are a person who looks out for the needs of others, then when you need help, it will be there.


  • Hard times come and go. If you look at history, you will see that there are both times of hardship and plenty.

It would have been easy in the midst of all the negative news stories to forget just how blessed we are.

Each time I have to stop on the road for wild turkeys, for a hen pheasant and her tiny chicks, for a deer or an elk, I am reminded of the beauty around me.

Each time I drive through town and see the lovely flowers, and smell the freshly-mown grass, or hear the melody of a bird in a tree, I am reminded of the beauty around me. Each time I watch baby calves buck and run in th pasture, or contented cows wading in grass to their bellies, I am reminded of the blessings all around me.

I do not wish to diminish the pain of the disaster when it hits, but rather retain a balanced view of the world as it stands. No matter what bad thing is happening, there is still time to laugh, to love, and to enjoy the blessings that are ever present in our lives.

Thanks for stopping by. The coffee is always on.

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