Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Dragging On

It was another night for Chutes and Ladders.  Daddy made a huge version of the game, this time with a rodeo theme.  It was boys versus girls - or cowboys versus cowgirls.  They each had a rider on a horse (a cowboy and a cowgirl), and had to navigate upwards.  The die was cast, and after two games, there was a tie.  The last game took forever, as Chutes and Ladders tends to do.  It's such a struggle to keep going, but that's what both teams did.  The game lasted so long that nearly all the children were gone, picked up by their parents.  Only three kids remained, a girl and two boys.  And the girl, representing all the girls that night, won it finally.

We were talking about the rodeo tonight, continuing the theme from this past weekend.  Here's the overview, which I think turned out rather well.

     Howdy, partner! Have you ever been to a rodeo? It’s the bulls and the blood, the dust and the mud, and the roar of the Sunday crowd! As we head to the arena, you might want to pay close attention to the cowboys in the chute, because there are a few things we all can learn at the rodeo.
     The first thing is the most obvious: hold firmly! While riding in a rodeo, a cowboy has to hold on firmly, no matter what direction things take him. Now life can feel like a rough ride too, in fact one that could throw you for a loop if you don’t hold on to something. Here's where you have to do what the Bible tells us to do: Hold firmly to our faith. You do that, and you’ll come out a winner.
Another good tip is to keep your focus. In the ring, a charging bull just might run down that cowboy if it weren’t for those distracting rodeo clowns. Don’t point and laugh at the bulls for not being so smart, because we fall for the same exact tricks. We’re tempted all the time! And we lose focus when we fall into sin, doing things God isn’t pleased with. Don’t let temptation distract you. Remember that the devil is just a clown!
     See how those riders keep one hand raised as they battle through? They’ve got one hand holding on firmly, while keeping that other hand raised the entire ride. There’s something in that for each of us to take away. To make it through life, we have to keep our hands up, raised to heaven. When you throw some praise up, you’ll actually find that ride through life a lot smoother. God can help you – this ain’t His first rodeo!
     There’s a great crowd of witnesses cheering you on, so hold on firmly, keep focused, and keep those hands up. Saddle up with confidence, because no matter how bumpy the ride, one thing is certain: you’re going to be a champion, gold buckle and all. Cowboy up! 

So anyway, that was good.  Daddy got to come home and see Mommy and Madison, who had just finished her last art enrichment class after school.  She'll start another one as soon as they begin again.  I think that's a few weeks from now, and has a holiday theme to it.  She's looking forward to it.  While home, Daddy went ahead and read from the devotional and from "The Rat with a Human Face" once more.  The story is moving along, with its protagonists doing some things without their parents' permission.  We'll see where that leads, but it's greatly hinted that it doesn't lead in the best of directions.

Madison brought home several tests and classwork assignments, and we can't say this enough:  she's doing so extremely well right now.  She's very detail oriented, and seems to be improving quite a bit in all areas.  We're really blessed.  She spends a lot of time studying and a lot of time paying attention and learning, and that's where it all comes from.  She's got self-discipline to study, but at the same time she's genuinely interested in learning everything she's being taught.  That's why she's doing well, and of course we're pretty happy about that.

The weather has been cooler lately, and that's so perfect for this time of year.  The only problem is that it has been dry for so long.  On one hand, you don't want rainy weather spoiling this or that.  But on the other hand, there's a point of desperation that our farmers have reached.  Lake Lanier is dropping in volume, and there doesn't seem to be any relief in sight.

Speaking of no relief, the election season drags on.  This one has been brutal.  But of course we say that every four years.  The best advice is to turn it all off from time to time, and go outside to enjoy the weather, or listen to some relaxing music, and pray.  Be thankful, be grateful, and just be somewhere else other than in front of the internet or the television.

Because it's there that one can watch the complete and utter self-destruction of the integrity of journalism.  That's a story in itself, although one that won't be covered any time soon.  Seriously, there's one network that supports one campaign to the point that you really don't have the balance you're looking for.  And all the other networks are completely supporting the other candidate.  The end result is that there is no in-between, and no balance whatsoever on any news source.  Just about everything on any network is presented in such a way as to endorse one candidate or another.  So that noble calling of journalism has sunk an amazingly low level, and that ideal of lofty integrity that journalists aspire to attain… is completely lost.  Every media representative is staining his or her work with bias in one direction or another.  And every report on some factual event becomes a subtle (and many times not-so-subtle) opinion piece.

Real journalism is dead, and that's that.  We'll have funeral services after this election season, I'm sure.  Walter Cronkite will be officiating, telling us what it was, what is is, and what it will be.  Tim Russert and David Brinkley will have a few words to share, and special guest speaker Ed Murrow will be on hand to close things out.  Journalists will come from all around.  But there'll be no questions after the service, please.

Anyway, off the soapbox.  Tonight's was a big night, and things are going to get busy the next few days - we have a big conference here, and there's so much to be done.  That should get everyone's mind off of the national scene for a few days, which is a good thing.  No more questions, please.

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