Summer in the Midwest

Published on July 19th, 2017

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold is a wise reprover to a listening ear. Pro 25:11-12

It is 4H time and 4H is pretty big in the Midwest!  Most counties have 4H fairs with all kinds of 4H exhibits, cotton candy and modest carnival rides.  It is a bigger deal in rural areas.  Our family loved it and often took a number of projects to the fair (including dairy and swine).  It was fun and it was quite competitive in St. Joseph County!

When I was a youngster, we were allowed to sleep in the barns with our livestock during fair week!  That probably doesn’t sound very appealing to most of you, but it was to us then.  When the rides shut down and all the people leave, the fairground becomes a quietly eerie place.

If you go to a county fair take note of the hard work represented in the various project and handsome livestock.  If you see the 4Hers around give them a high five and tell them, “Nice work!”  It will mean a lot!

It also says a lot about you – you see, admire and respect the good work done by others.

As we live out our lives a people redeemed in Jesus Christ we know the little things are not so little and often reveal much about what is inside of us.  As “poor miserable sinners” we are all too aware of our need for forgiveness as well as our need for encouragement.  A simple compliment can make a person’s day and lift up someone who has one kind of struggle or another. “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up,  just as you are doing.” Th_5:11

Back to the 4H fair.  There is only one grand champion in each area.  We raised Hampshire hogs and I entered every year for 10 years.  Once I received a grand champion ribbon, but every year I received compliments from parents, family and friends who were intending to encourage me.  It really helped!  It was in my 9th year that I won!  Encourage and build one another up in Christ!  Go to a fair and have a giant Elephant Ear!

To make an apt answer is a joy to a man, and a word in season, how good it is! Prov.15:23