Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Breaking News

Columns

November 17, 2012

Remaining thankful in bleak times

Thank-fulness is about being grateful for what we have – and perhaps for what miseries we have avoided. To be thankful does not mean we deny problems or ignore unrealized dreams. Thankfulness gives us a balanced perspective. Our problems and worries monopolize our minds, often against our wills. But thankfulness takes effort and intentionality.

A plethora of sad news has recently come our way. Take the disastrous explosion in nearby Indianapolis that demolished 80 houses. John and Jennifer Longworth, a newlywed couple, died in that explosion, according RTV6. Jennifer was a particularly beloved teacher.

The situation on the East Coast has been more awful. The poor folks in New Jersey and New York have experienced loss of life and home, surviving in shelters or in their cold, powerless residences. We have friends who at one time lived in Kokomo and now dwell in New Jersey. Although their house was spared, they are still without power – and she had to have a surgery during this time. She is home, snuggling under the blankets as she convalesces.

Nearly half of our nation was displeased with the presidential election, some to the point of desperation. Folks in some regions are actually sending petitions to Washington for their states to secede from the union. The Texas petition garnered more than 100,000 signatures and reads in part: “… Given that the state of Texas maintains a balanced budget and is the 15th largest economy in the world, it is practically feasible for Texas to withdraw from the union, and to do so would protect its citizens’ standard of living and re-secure their rights and liberties in accordance with the original ideas and beliefs of our founding fathers which are no longer being reflected by the federal government.”

Other states have circulated similar petitions, and a few, all of them Southern states, have passed the 25,000 signature threshold.

A thankful person can be aware of all of the above, but he or she views things in a more balanced way. For example, a thankful person is grateful that Americans have the right to vote, that they exercised the right to vote, and that our nation has the leaders we deserve. If we have good leaders, it is because we practiced wisdom in our choices and deserve to be well led. If we have poor leaders, then we deserve them because of our foolishness. Rather than have leaders forced upon us through royal succession or central committees, we have the leaders we freely chose.

A thankful person is grateful that most of us enjoy the benefits of electricity more than 99 percent of the time. This Thanksgiving, I am thankful. This hasn’t been a wonderful year for me. I lost my sister and have experienced some disappointments. But I have an amazing wife and wonderful children, good friends, and my stomach is (too) full. Sometimes we only appreciate what we had, not what we have. I would like to be different. I want to thank God for my blessings while I still enjoy them. Join me, won’t you?

Ed Vasicek is pastor of Highland Park Church and a weekly contributor to the Kokomo Tribune. Contact him at edvasicek@att.net.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • DAVE BANGERT: Indiana's new chief justice and court's 'mom question' Two years ago, as Loretta Rush ascended from Tippecanoe Superior Court 3 judge to the state’s Supreme Court, I dropped this line in a column celebrating someone who had earned her place.“Across the state, the headline will be: ‘[Mitch] Daniels Choose

    August 14, 2014

  • JEFFREY McCALL: POTUS promises of transparency fail to materialize The United States system of government relies on citizens having full access to information that can be used in self-governance. Journalists and other First Amendment advocates were enthused when the Obama administration came into office with convinc

    August 14, 2014

  • Rob Burgess House of Burgess: RIP Robin Williams

    I was re-watching the 2006 movie “Little Miss Sunshine” Monday when I heard my phone buzz. After the credits had rolled, I looked at the screen and found myself shocked.It was a news alert that Robin Williams had died that morning at the age of 63 of an apparent suicide.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • ANDREA NEAL: 'Paddle Your Own Canoe' is a Hoosier inspiration

    Editor’s note: This is one in a series of essays leading up to the celebration of the Indiana Bicentennial in December 2016. James Whitcomb Riley was the most acclaimed, but he wasn’t the first Hoosier poet to gain national fame. Sarah T. Bolton dese

    August 13, 2014

  • DAVE BANGERT: Rokita, illegal immigration, Ebola outbreak and context At first listen last Monday, there was something so unsavory about our congressman, Todd Rokita, whipping up two full-fledged crises — Central American children at the U.S. southern border and the African scourge of Ebola — into one pungent sound bit

    August 12, 2014

  • DAN COATS: Let's give nonprofits relief from IRS delays A flurry of scandal has recently surrounded the Internal Revenue Service.Over the past few months, we have learned about missing emails from IRS employees and revelations of clear bias and hostility by a top IRS official towards organizations with ce

    August 12, 2014

  • BRIAN HOWEY: Pitchforks and pikes in our summer of discontent Congress is ... embarrassing. Our political system is failing us. On an individual basis, many of us have respect for members of our delegation. We can have a common sense conversation with a senator, congressman or congresswoman, and then they go ba

    August 11, 2014

  • DICK WOLFSIE: Enough reminders to forget It began with a simple phone call to my friend, Auri, a computer geek I asked to help me with my very successful website, which right now is attracting up to three visitors a month. To have a strong online presence, you have to spend several hours a

    August 11, 2014

  • ED VASICEK: Outsourced jobs, health crises in foreign lands The other week, my Internet was giving me trouble. I called the support number, and — to my surprise — I spoke to a representative who sounded as American as apple pie. It turned out the technical problem was an oversight on my end and fixed quickly.

    August 10, 2014

  • MICHAEL HICKS: Dodging corporate taxes Corporations are among our oldest institutions. Something like a joint stock company probably triggered the earliest formal written communication — the accounting ledger. It should be unsurprising that the early traders of Mesopotamia used a corporat

    August 10, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Obama: World Is Appalled by Murder of Journalist Israel, Militants Trade Fire After Talks Fail Pres. George W. Bush Takes Ice Bucket Challenge Pierce Brosnan's Call to Join the Expendables Changes Coming to No-Fly List Raw: IDF Footage Said to Show Airstrikes Police: Ferguson More Peaceful Raw: Aftermath of Airstrike in Gaza Raw: Thousands March on Pakistani Parliament Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan Fire Crews Tame Yosemite Fire Raw: Police Weapon Drawn Near Protesters, Media Raw: Explosions in Gaza As Airstrikes Resume Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape Texas Gov. Perry: Indictment 'a Political Act' US Officials: Video Shows American's Beheading Video Shows Ferguson Cop Months Before Shooting Water Bottles Recalled for Safety Researcher Testing On-Field Concussion Scanners
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll
Kelly Lafferty's video on Tom Miller