Columns/Opinions

Thu
23
Aug

"To be citizens of Heaven means we follow God’s pattern for life" by: Caleb Gibson

   In 2018, Missionary Kenneth “J.R.” Danforth went missing after their boat capsized off the coast of Tanzania in the Indian Ocean. 
   The last time Sam Cunningham saw his friend J.R., he asked him, “How does it feel to be home?” 
   J.R. replied, “I don’t know if Africa is my home now or Texas. I guess Heaven’s my home.” 
   Those were Sam’s last memories about him. 
   Perhaps we should have the same attitude. Maybe we should live like J.R. and know that our eternal home is not on Earth, but in Heaven. 
   The truth is that we all are foreigners in this land. 
   The Disciple Peter once wrote, “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers [in this world] to abstain from the sensual urges [those dishonorable desires] that wage war against the soul.” (2 Peter 2:11) (Amplified Bible). 

Thu
23
Aug

"Starting, running own business workshop in Bay City" by: Mike Price

   After serving four years in the Navy, where I was a diver, my wife and I moved to Houston. 
   I studied at University of Houston and taught scuba diving at the East End YMCA. 
   One day when I was picking up scuba tanks, the owner said, “I am moving to Hawaii, would you like to buy my business?”
   I had no business background and had not studied business in college, but after asking an accountant to evaluate the viability of the business, I decided to buy it. 
   A banker said his bank would finance the business if I set up an SBA-backed loan, and the SBA recommended that I talk to a SCORE mentor. 
   He explained that SCORE is an organization made up of volunteers who mentor people who want to go into business, or already own a small business. 
   SCORE mentor Jim Farmer helped me write a business plan acceptable to the bank and the SBA. 

Thu
23
Aug

"A few things to watch for as the seasons begin to change"By Aaron Sumrall, PhD County Extension Agent Agriculture & Natural Resources

   It is hard to believe that we are about to begin the ninth month of 2018! 
   I am sure you have noticed many weather reports have begun to show cold fronts making it further south, mentions of fall foliage color changes, and the hope of lower humidity. 
   Many warm-season birds have begun their migrations out of the northern states with some of the earlier travelers already making it to Matagorda County. 
   This past Saturday, the fish seemed to have a little lock jaw for me on the bay and I found myself paying more attention to the sky than I did to my line. 
   During several of those blank stares into the blue sky, I noticed many times hummingbirds traversing the bay headed only south with surely more to come. 
   Below are a few things to keep in mind as we get closer to the shifting of the winds.
    It will not be long until we begin to see Walnut caterpillar and web worms in the canopies of our pecan trees. 

Thu
16
Aug

"Recovering from a life-changer; I’m not the enemy of the people" by: Mike Reddell

   You know, there was a time not so many years ago that I thought I was bulletproof.
   A fallacy, to be sure, but after a hip replacement in March and last week’s heart attack, I realize that I’m one lucky fellow.
   Life turns on a dime indeed!
   Thanks to all of you who called and sent well wishes - they meant a lot.
   Recovery always has been more than pills and doctor visits.
   I am weary, alas, after three days of imprisonment at Houston’s St. Luke’s Hospital, on the oft-asked question for hospital patients: On a scale of 1 to 10, from no pain to excruciating, how would you rate your pain?
   I see the reason behind that, but other than “I hurt like all get-out” - that would be 8-10 on the pain meter frowny faces - or I hurt some and want attention (4-7 on the sort-of frowny face scale) and not so much pain (1-3 expressionless faces).

Thu
16
Aug

"Explaining the stream of consciousness in my column writing" by: Jessica Shepard

   I’ve been asked before how I manage to write down anything for my column and if I intentionally make them funny.
   Well, if you’ve been following my columns long enough, you know that there’s no real rhyme or reason to my weekly blurbs.
   And if my little slice of life or stream of consciousness gets you to laugh, then I call that a bonus. 
   Most of my comedic wit relies on being in person and bouncing off of another person’s reactions.
   It’s hard to gauge what anyone will think or feel when they read my column and I’m not right there watching them.
   Plus, there aren’t too many limits put on my columns aside from the number of words and basic guidelines. You know, no profanity, made up words or picking fights.
   That last one is hard for me to manage – mostly because I’m the eldest of three children and partially because I enjoy correcting people when they’re wrong.

Thu
16
Aug

"Wise to keep your wishes closer to the vest" by: John Sample

   I am living one of those life moments where you have to watch what you wish for. 
   Kerrville is repairing the street in front of my office. It is long overdue and needed. They stripped the asphalt down to the base last week. 
   I returned last night to find the road had become a lake, as there is nowhere for the water to drain after a much-needed rain. 
   I have two cars and a tow truck stuck in front of my house. While I have a four-wheel drive truck to escape, it is not a pretty picture. We need the rain much more than the inconvenience but what a sight.
   Far too many times in life this situation repeats itself in our economy. 

Thu
16
Aug

Time to put excess cash to work?

   After years of sitting at historical lows, short-term interest rates now have risen to more attractive levels. 
   Should you consider investing some of your excess cash to take advantage of these higher rates?
There’s no simple answer. 
   You still need to own a mix of stocks and bonds that’s appropriate for your goals, time horizon and risk tolerance.
   Plus, you’ve got to have enough cash available to make any investment-related moves. 
   Are you comfortably meeting your daily cash-flow needs? For example, do you have three to six months’ worth of living expenses set aside in an emergency fund? 
   Are you also setting aside some cash for a short-term goal, such as a vacation?
   If you have met these needs and you still have excess cash, you may indeed want to consider putting some of it to work, possibly by investing in those short-term fixed-income vehicles now offering higher rates. 

Thu
16
Aug

"Reel Reviews: ‘The Meg’ a new Jaws with a much scarier, bigger fish" by: Jessica Shepard

   As summer draws to a close, I thought it was strange for “The Meg,” a new shark movie, to drop in the middle of August.
   After all, I grew up watching “Jaws” and all of its sequels and have always been deathly afraid of the unknown that lurks below the ocean’s surface.
   Hollywood has tried to improve on “Jaws” and hadn’t managed until now.
   The Meg takes it a bit further to a prehistoric predator, the Megalodon, a species of shark that could grow up to 60 feet long and dwarf many modern-day whales and other sharks.
   Plus the movie is loosely based off the 1997 book “Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror” by Steve Alten.
   The film stars Jason Statham, Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Winston Chao, Jessica McNamee, Masi Oka, Ólafur Ólafsson, Robert Taylor, and Cliff Curtis.
   It all starts with rescue diver Jonas Taylor (Statham) attempting to save a group of scientists in a failing and inoperable nuclear submarine. 

Thu
16
Aug

"We must listen to hear the Lord’s messages of warning" by: Betsy Monico

   Even in the midst of packing my firstborn for college and preparing for the new and upcoming school year, our laundry still must be done. 
   A few nights ago, I found myself in a bind with my dryer. It was not drying! I grabbed a flashlight and headed out to the vent on the front porch without even notifying anyone in the living room that I had a problem. 
   I realized I was on round 3 with one particular load of clothes and they still were not dry. All I could think of was the vent. 
   My beeper, that has been previously mentioned in this column because it drove me crazy, had not beeped. I knew the issue was not the lint filter. 
   It had not beeped at me. I was in the clear there. The root cause had to be elsewhere. 
   My husband and oldest son caught me on the way back into the house. They asked me what on earth I was doing on the front porch with a flashlight late at night. 

Thu
16
Aug

"You were chosen by God to use gifts you have to reach others" by: Caleb Gibson

   Winston S. Churchill once said, “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” 
   In the story of Esther, we see God used a young orphan girl to become the queen of Persia for a perfect time. All Esther had was her voice and she used it. 
   Esther takes place during the Jewish exile. They were defeated by Babylon and taken as slaves. Later, the Persians defeated the Babylonians and the Jews found themselves under King Xerxes. 
   The king’s vizier, Haman, wrote a decree to annihilate all of the Jewish people in their nation. Xerxes signed the decree not realizing that his Queen Esther was a Jew as well. 
   When Esther discovers this, she risks her life and appears to see the king in the inner court without being summoned. 

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