We get a free paper in our rural mailbox in Wisconsin. I like to read about upcoming Amish auctions and fundraiser bratfests (for enjoying bratwurst sausages, not naughty children). I also read the classifieds, which is kind of a sociological experience and is sometimes quite poignant.
The September 8 edition tells me that Sherm’s Piggly Wiggly is looking for a part-time meat cutter and that there is a “Milking position in a double 10 parlor.” There are roosters, dogs, and fishing equipment to buy and houses to rent. “FOR RENT: Renovated church converted to 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath home. Vaulted ceilings.” I guess they would be vaulted, ay?
It’s the letters of thanks that make me realize that we all need ways to show our appreciation. A farmer writes, “I would like to thank our daughter for milking the cows Sunday, August 9 so we could go to the state fair.” Lorraine writes to thank the fire and police departments “who helped me through a critical time of my life. I will never forget your thoughtfulness.” There seem to be messages for the saints in every issue. August 25 has an anonymous writer declaring “Thank you Jesus, Mary, Joseph, St. Jude, and St. Anthony for prayers answered.”
So they read that paper,too? Good to know. And good to know that an attitude of gratitude still lives in the heartland. It could also be called an ALTitude of gratitude, because it elevates your life condition when you give thanks, don’t you think? It gets you out of the valley and onto the top of the hill where you get a perspective on where you’ve been–and how many have helped along the way.