Neighbors, no matter what
August 17, 2012
Thanks to the blessing of Facebook, a dear Oregon friend shared one of Stephanie Falck's photos of the 500-ton, 17-semi truck hay donation.
Here in Ohio, thirty years ago, a dear Amish friend -- himself a farmer with Limousin beef cattle -- had a bumper crop of top-notch alfalfa hay. That same summer, farmers in the Carolinas experienced a terrible drought. Jonas shipped a railcar load of hay to those farmers, with the stipulation that the recipients only know it came from "a friend."
This is how neighbors are. It does not matter the distance from their driveway to yours. It might be a half-hour from your kitchen table to theirs, or it could take two or three days' travel to put your feet under their table -- you're still neighbors.
During this summer of drought, wildfires and other trials & tribulations, please know that people all over our great country (and beyond) hold you close in prayer. We are grateful beyond words for the kindness that is inherent in good people to simply do good things. Recognition is not sought. Heroes don't view themselves thusly. Anyone would do it, they say.
God is alive and well in the hearts of such people -- the donors, transporters and recipients of such kindnesses. Let's let that take center stage in our lives and push the 'gristle' to the back of our plates. Good still prevails in the face of adversity!
Julie Kay Smithson is a property rights / natural resources researcher in west-central Ohio's Amish and Mennonite farming country. She lives with Good Boy, a blue heeler who depends on her to be his 'seeing eye person' -- and the sweetest memories of Wiggles Blue Heeler, who was at her side for more than a dozen years of rural living.