Look Around. Be Grateful

For the beauty of the earth,
for the glory of the skies,
for the love which from our birth
over and around us lies.
Christ, our Lord, to you we raise
this, our hymn of grateful praise.
Author: Folliott Sandford Pierpoint (1864)

Praised be You my Lord through our Sister,
Mother Earth
who sustains and governs us,
producing varied fruits with colored flowers and herbs.
Praise be You my Lord through those who grant pardon for love of You and bear sickness and trial.
Blessed are those who endure in peace, By You Most High, they will be crowned.
Brother Sun, Sister Moon, St. Francis of Assisi.

A favorite day trip is visiting the Flint Hills National Reserve, near Cottonwood Falls, Kansas. It’s about two hours south of the Kansas City metropolitan area, and a world away from much else. And, it’s free. You can check in with the Parks Ranger, and walk around all day long.

The land, what is left of what was millions of acres of rugged territory, is the remnants of what was left behind as the glaciers retreated, millions of years ago. In addition to hills and valleys, there are acres of limestone embedded in the ground, worn down over millennia. Additionally, there are springs, with little groves of trees, at intervals on the trek where you would least expect anything to survive.

To walk these lands, and to stop and hear nothing but your heartbeat, is to realize how small your problems are in the wondering landscape God has provided. We are His stewards, our job is to protect His precious gifts.

It seems easier to make things harder. Yes, our daily issues must be addressed, but how to put them, and their solutions, into perspective, to say to the Lord, “Thy will be done”?

A person goal is to continue to let God lead my thinking, make me feel assured in decision making, and know His will is to be mine, in all my difficulties.

It’s as simple as standing in his majesties of nature.

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Michael Throop

Dr. Michael Throop spent nearly 40 years on air in radio and television, with a majority of that time spent in broadcast journalism. He began his teaching career in Spring, 2007, as a lecturer in the University of Kansas School of Journalism. Michael joined Benedictine College in Fall, 2007, as an adjunct in the Journalism and Mass Communications Department, and was promoted to Assistant Professor in Fall 2019. He works with students in all levels, teaching Media and Society as an introductory and General Education initiative, as well as creating departmental courses exploring the emergence of social media and its impact on journalism, nonprofit communications, and the greater society