Category: Columns

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by Slim Randles The closed-season school board meeting was called to order half an hour late by its chairman, J. Buckdancer Alcott, because the board members saw Windy Wilson sitting in the audience. Windy had no children, and he sure as sugar wasn’t a teacher, but he could talk. And he was patiently biding his time. Despite the board’s foot dragging through the agenda, Windy didn’t give up and go home. Finally, Alcott said it was time for public feedback and asked if anyone wanted to speak. Windy raised his hand. Alcott looked desperately around, but Windy’s hand was the only one raised. He nodded in Windy’s direction. “My name is Alphonse Wilson,” he said, standing, “and I live here.” “We know who you are, Windy,” said Alcott. “Thanks, Buck. I feel it’s my duty to bring to the board’s attention a strategic dearth of learning with these young people today. A paucity of eddyflication. In short, their vocabulary is seriously obfusticated. We have to ask ourselves, what are these young people going to do in polite society when a hostess passes around the horse doovers? Are they going to palaver proper, or just sit there on their sacrolibriums and nod? Are they going to be admitted to the barn association, write them writs of habeas porpoise, or just sue each other out of court? Are we really doing...

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Hope to Health – It’s A Process

by Tiffany Anderson If you read the story in John 9, you will read about the blind man whom Jesus healed. This story speaks volumes because although Jesus had the power to heal right away, he did not. He made the healing a process and he gave the man responsibility to make sure that it took place. When people see sick people they automatically assume that the person or someone attached to him sinned. In this text Jesus said that it was no one who sinned but that God wanted to show his power and miraculous nature. Jesus did not say that he was healing the blind man but that God would heal him through Jesus. In this text we learn that things do not just happen. That there is a process to healing. There is also a proper timing. Jesus said that it was daytime. Nothing could be done at night. Then he broke down the process. First, Jesus spat on the ground and made clay with his saliva. Secondly, Jesus anointed his eyes with the clay. Last but not least, he sent the man to go and wash in the pool of Siloam. The blind man went, washed, and came back seeing. In our health, we are commanded to do the same. We have a process to follow. Health is not something just given, but something worked for. We have to first know what is for...

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An Homage to Hometown Happenings

by Kate B. Jerome No matter where my travels take me, I always seek out the local newspaper. I know. My smartphone easily provides more detail about a town than I will ever need. But the local paper does so much more. That’s because it fits the many pieces of the community puzzle together. Where else can you get a glimpse of what a citizenry most values and fears—all within a few recyclable pages? In the tiny town where I grew up, the local paper was a powerful tool—no doubt for many reasons beyond my young comprehension. However, I looked forward to the daily delivery for two simple reasons. First, I loved to read the personal stories—from tragedy to triumph—about the people in my own community. It was the first inkling I had that I might be part of something larger than the family who lived at 12 Parkview. Second, I couldn’t wait to hear the interesting dinner conversations that some tidbit in the paper was bound to spark. Of course, my favorites were the most heated discussions. And when my parents resorted to spelling out words? Well, let’s just say the training led to considerable success in my grade school spelling bees! Decades of educational publishing experience later, I know my hometown paper was just one arrow in the successful child-raising quiver my parents used. But it was...

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Protecting Your Pet from the Summer Heat

by College of Veterinary Medicine & Sciences, Texas A&M University Summer in Texas means more time to play outside, go swimming, and soak up the sun. However, warmer temperatures also mean that pets may be more susceptible to heat exhaustion or heat stroke. To help pet owners avoid these risks, Dr. Stacy Eckman, clinical assistant professor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, offered some insight. “Heat stroke and heat exhaustion are major problems for pets in the summer, especially in short-nosed breeds, such a pug or a bulldog,” Eckman said. “These conditions can occur during hot and humid days and even cooler days, if your pets aren’t accustomed to the heat.” Heat exhaustion is the early stages of a heat stroke and causes lethargy, vomiting, and weakness. Following continued exercise or exposure to heat, Eckman said a heat stroke can occur with more severe signs, including extreme lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, and pale mucous membranes. This can lead to significant problems up to and including death if not recognized and treated immediately. Other dangers pets may face in the summer heat include paw pad burns from walking on hot concrete. If your dog is going to be active outside when it is hot, be sure to keep them off concrete or asphalt for extended periods of time. You can also provide your pet with other...

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It Seems to Me: Avoiding Calamities

by Pastor Steve Ellison   In Proverbs 24:21-22, God presents a question that is hard on most of us and particularly hard on me.  “Fear the Lord and the king, my son, and do not join with the rebellious, for those two will send sudden destruction upon them, and who knows what calamities they can bring?” (NIV) I comprehend the first part easily.  I fear the Lord with a healthy respect, awe, and fear.  I am not so sure of my respect for the “king”.  I am unhappy with all of the governments over me.  My unhappiness generally gets more pronounced moving from the local all the way up to the federal government.  I am really afraid of what my government is becoming, but this fear has nothing to do with respect.  I am very depressed about the condition of my country, particularly when I remember that I am at least partly responsible for its condition, and that I will soon be passing it on to my children’s generation.  I am deeply saddened and discouraged.  Proverbs 24, Ecclesiastes 8 & 10, Romans 13, and 1 Peter 2 present me with a very clear message about my duty to obey, the righteousness in obeying, and the danger in not obeying the governments over me.  I can honestly say that I do my best to obey, but I must add that...

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