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Earth’s rebirth sets climate for change

It was an exciting place down at our farm last week. It is just a little patch of earth but I felt like I was sitting in the center of the universe. Monsoon-style rains were soaking everything and the spring that feeds the pond acted as though it was a genuine, big time waterfall. The frogs in our breeding pond were producing a raucous, 24-hour-a-day chorus, and the willow trees were hourly pushing forth new green leaves. Over it all, a full-moon played ‘peek-a-boo’ throughout the night.
Four days earlier when I was here, it was grey and cold. The change happened so fast and I know it all may revert to that condition any time. But for now, the bursting forth of new life is apparent everywhere. Even as I sat on the porch and worried about the flooding of homes and fields, I had the feeling of life and hope. The thunder that echoed through our little valley heralded the power of rebirth after apparent dormancy of life.
The ground seems so hard and cold during winter. The early sunsets and the late sunrises seem so permanent. It is difficult to really believe that the world is in the midst of preparing for the newness of spring. But spring does come, and when it does, it literally bursts through the barriers of the barren months and erupts seemingly overnight. When I haven’t anticipated the change, I don’t seem to be ready to absorb all that it has to offer, as I am taken by surprise and merely play catch up. Before I know it summer will be here, and I will not have gotten out my spring bonnet, let alone found my swimming suit that was packed away for the winter.
Like many of you, I sit through civic meetings over and over again and begin to wonder if anything is really happening. We work through activities in our own homes that appear to produce less than we had in mind and frequently on a gloomy mood day feel that life can be just ‘the same-old same-old.’ But like the explosion of spring, when turn-around conditions happen, they come fast and furiously. In Southern Indiana, we have had economic times of sobering slowness. What a temptation it is to worry that this will become a way of life. Don’t be paralyzed by the cold and hard ground that has been under foot. This is our time for preparation. The burst of opportunities and growth are just ahead, and when they spring forth, they will come with speed and urgency. We can be washed away by forces as strong as the spring rains if we haven’t done our homework. We want to drive the progress instead of barely being able to respond to forces that come our way.
What do we need to do to be ready to maximize our opportunities? Do we have a clear understanding of the conditions in our communities? Do we know where the resources of dollars, materials and people reside? Have we prioritized our problems and needs? Do we have a vision of what we want our farm lands, recreation areas and towns to look like in the future? Have we brainstormed with others to come up with a variety of plans of action that might be workable under anticipated conditions?
We do well to ask ourselves these questions for our individual lives and as we join together as a collective community. Is this a call only to those who by tradition have held leadership rolls in our businesses, organizations, churches and schools? The answer must be a resounding ‘NO’ if we are to become the best that we can be as individuals and as communities. So don’t just read this and wait for someone else to harness the forces of the future. Get out a pad and pencil and write down your thoughts. Call your friends and discuss issues and even meet for coffee and a confab. Join a group that you know deals with something you care about or in which you are skilled. Write a letter to the editor of The Corydon Democrat. Seek out other people who see an opportunity or need that no one has addressed and take it on. Charge up your life with new commitments and friends.
If you think the willow trees and flowers bloom when energized by spring conditions, wait until you experience that new growth within yourself. Don’t worry that you might step on other people’s toes. There is enough dance floor for everyone.
Don’t hesitate out of fear that you will be overworked. When you have passion for a cause and experience making a difference in life, energy comes like the spring breeze and moves you on. And you will be smiling as you go.

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