Sunday, August 6, 2017

Is Caring For Real

Caring is displaying kindness and concern for others. It's intentional. It's not just a feeling that may come and go. It's a way of life. Not just an occasional good deed. It's an action. It's not the thought that counts.
I'm sure you've experienced a conversation where someone asked you how things were going. As you were in the process of sharing with them you could tell they were totally unengaged or uninterested. We feel understood, accepted, and valued when folks care for real. 
Any guesses where this picture was taken? Actually it's the manure pit of a hog shed. The only time it would be safe down here would be before it was used. 
I was surprised to get this snap from Karl with his new hog shed progress. The foreman said it usually takes his crew of 17 guys just three days to frame and side a 277 foot long building. 
We mowed CRP acres for Jim this past week in the southern part of our county. We started out with two tire tractors. This is Kasey and Kurt on the evening I brought them supper.
However after a number of flat tires due to small sharp tree stems we had to switch to a track tractor.
It was a rewarding experiencing getting to know Jim since we had not met before. We talked about the old days. We talked about the little country church he and his wife attend just across the field. I asked him if he minded showing me. Many of us have a lifetime of memories from our church family. He said many of his friends were in the adjoining cemetery including his brother and daughter. 
Jim loaded me up with tomatoes and watermelons. Jan made the tomatoes into salsa and brought it out for coffeetime during our sidewalk project. 
Jan likes river rock added to our concrete around our home. You wash the gravel, then throw it over the poured concrete and trowel it in. After a couple of hours you wash off the top of the concrete to expose the river gravel. After the concrete is totally dry you spray on a cure and seal to protect it and make it shiny.
It's always good to have plenty of help during a "pour". I'm thankful for Ryan, Matt, Andy, BJ, Gideon, and Seth and his kids who helped after returning a tractor.
It's interesting. Once in a while I'll go back and read a blog from exactly a year ago to try and get a perspective. The first week of August in 2016  I slipped down this hill on a piece of plywood during a rain and hurt my shoulder. :) Sometimes it takes me a while to get things finished.
Chopping silage crossways across our seed plot has become an annual event. It means fall is close. It also means our annual supper is next week.
For the past 28 years we clean the shop, invite customers, folks we do business for and with, friends, and family to join us for supper and good conversation.
The evening supper is come and go anytime however we will have a few speakers greet us around 6:30 including Dekalb, Becks, and Cargill/Eddyville folks. Ray, who retired from Eddyville will be here. There will also be tables set up with folks who can help you out with drone imagery and precision planting equipment. This is your official invitation if you would like to come out and say hello.
We all care about our communities. Do we care for real? Last evening there was a gospel concert in the square of Oskaloosa. It was really good to see so many folks come out and enjoy the music as well as each others company. 
Last evening at the concert Tim mentioned that during hard times folks pray hard, however they don't surrender. Caring for real is surrendering. Surrendering to God to be in charge of our lives. Surrendering to others our time, even when we are busy. With our talents, finding ways to be a coach and an encourager. And with our treasures, even when we are not always sure what the future holds. Surrender brings blessings we never expect. Go, have a blessed week.

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