Decades ago, Val Farmer was giving a talk on rural psychology at the South Dakota State Fair in Huron when a reporter approached him to do a story. Farmer said yes, but wasn’t entirely happy with the way it turned out – and figured he could do better.
How are we going to protect our children from the increasing influences of a society that no longer seems grounded in fundamental values? How can our families be sanctuaries for our children and beacons of light for others as society continues its relentless decline in morality and standards of conduct?
The column isn’t the only thing I’m stopping. I am also retiring from being a team member of the National AgrAbility Project Advisory Team. I have been a small part of this remarkable organization since the ’90s.
It is official. My wife, Darlene, and I know our plans. I mentioned before that Darlene had learned Russian and that I wanted to see her use that language in a meaningful way in our lifetime. The time didn’t seem right until now. It also helps ease my mind that Dr. Mike Rosmann is waiting in the wings to extend this column to my loyal readers.
When I was in graduate school in the early ’70s, zero population growth was the secular religion of the day. Parents with big families were accused of polluting the earth. Paul Ehrlich and his environmentalist friends couldn’t have been more wrong.
What is love?
Love is the expression of attitudes and behavior in which the well-being of a loved one is first and foremost in our minds. Our happiness is not complete without our partner’s happiness. This loving consideration is expressed in many ways in the constancy of our daily actions.
One vital dimension of marriage is that it provides the sense of security we need to face the major problems of life. It is like having someone in your corner when life gets overwhelming – someone you can turn to for comfort and support.
It’s true. The time has come to quit. The time is right. It has been 28 years since I wrote my first column in January 1984 for the Rapid City (S.D.) Journal. I didn’t know what kind of journey I was on or where it would take me. But I began with a sense of mission and that sense of mission has sustained me.
My career in a helping profession and journalism is fast approaching an ending. I have three months left to pick and choose my final thoughts to leave with you before my last deadline. It brings perspective into sharp focus, kind of like a diagnosis of a terminal illness.
What makes the Christmas holidays special? For most of us, the religious significance of the birth of Jesus Christ gives meaning to our lives. It is a time for a renewal of faith and Christian charity.
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