Thankful for the little things

carroll smith
Carroll Smith,

For me, Nov. 1 signals the approach of Thanksgiving and brings to mind all the ways in which we are blessed. It’s ironic to be writing this with only a scrap of filtered light coming through the window and a bare minimum of battery power on my computer following the ferocious winds that blew through, causing an electrical outage.

But I am thankful to have only suffered minimal damage and for the good supply of peanut butter and jelly in my pantry. It’s the little things….

I also am thankful for agriculture in general and our farmers specifically. In the big picture, they provide a safe, reliable food and fiber source for the world and are instrumental in keeping local, rural economies viable. Farmers not only preserve the land they love but also make it better for future generations.

They have a passion for what they do and the work ethic to back it up. We are all certainly thankful for these “big things.” But when Paul Harvey delivered his famous speech — So God Made a Farmer — at the Future Farmers of America convention in 1978, he centered on many of the “little things” that define a farmer as well. Here is an excerpt from his commentary.

“It had to be somebody who’d plow deep and straight and not cut corners; somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeder and finish a hard week’s work with a five-mile drive to church; somebody who would bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who would laugh, and then sigh, and then reply, with smiling eyes, when his son says that he wants to spend his life ‘doing what dad does’ so God made a farmer.”

The little things that make farmers special for which we are thankful can be seen on social media feeds as well. They don’t have to say how much they love their families or the glow of a sunrise or sunset because it’s evident in the photos they post. Farmers don’t complain about working the night shift.

Instead, they share a photo of beautiful white cotton lit up by the lights of the pickers rolling across the field.

I also saw a photo of a mom running a harvester with a precious little boy strapped into his baby seat beside her with this comment: “The boss came to work with mama today.”

And another of a little girl in her princess dress walking across the field bringing daddy his lunch. It’s moments like these that are so important. Whether you celebrate Thanksgiving around the dinner table or on the turnrow, be thankful for the little things that make up the essence of life.

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