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I appreciate our small town paper. I read about people and events that are important to me. So much of our news sources hash and rehash what “important” people in the greater world are doing, and saying. Mostly we hear what is wrong with our world, and about who we might blame. The more I listen the more I question the purpose of attending to any of that news. I tend to agree with a quote from Mark Twain, slightly altered.
“If you don’t listen to the news, you are uninformed, if you do listen to it, you are misinformed.”
I readily admit that I am not well versed about many happenings in today’s world. I would not be a wise choice for your partner in a game of trivial pursuit. I am unfamiliar with many “important” people and events in today’s news. I figure, however, that there is a reason why the game is called “Trivial” Pursuit. And, that there is also a reason why it is a game. I don’t need a news source to figure out what to attend to, or who is important. That would be the people who sit across the table from me, who send me Christmas cards, and whose picture I have on my refrigerator.
I recently found an email from 2010 that might give you a glimpse of my idea of what is important.
I spent the weekend with my 95-year-old mother whose eyes still sparkle when I walk into the room, and whose sense of humor is as keen as when she was 20, though she doesn’t fully remember yesterday, let alone when she was 20. I played with my two-year-old grandson, who already knows “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” My niece brought her newly adopted baby girl for a visit. We discussed what a wonderful God we have to give her this beautiful baby, and to give this baby girl loving parents. My three-year-old great niece delighted me with her incredible ability to giggle with abandon at life’s eccentricities. Who cares what the rest of the world finds funny! I spent the evening with my nephew, with whom I had a thought provoking conversation about the way ordinary people relate to one another and to God. We concluded that current technology doesn’t aid us in either. I attended a small town church where God’s word was preached without apology or debate.
Reading this old email, I realized that real news and important people are always right before me. Any change that I might make in this world is going to start at my own dinner table, or in my own community. If I am to alter the course of history, then it will be by what I do and say to those before me, and beside me. So, thank you small town newspapers for sharing about the people, the businesses, and the events that influence my life. Thank you for showing me the piece of this world that I might have some power to change for the better.
Contributed by Carolyn Primm