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HONK FROM BEHIND - February 22, 2007

Several Calhouners were in attendance during the WVU basketball game last Saturday, including Steve and Donna Morris Maxwell of Clarksburg and Joe and Sandy Stull Morris and daughters Aren of Cranberry Township, Pa., and Drue, a WVU freshman.

Of course, they were talking about all the good memories of growing up in Calhoun County and asking what was new. I told them about several younger graduates who are returning and hoping to set up small businesses or services and also about the increase of younger children who are taking part in Junior Sermon at church.

After the game, I was driving home in the snow at a slower than usual speed, so it was a good time to think about the week’s happenings. I was thinking that Calhoun County has a hold on the hearts of so many, but my mind wandered to some of the problems we face and why these happen.

Then I remembered this story from an unknown author:

“Have you ever wondered why migrating geese fly in a ‘V’ formation?

As with most animal behavior, God had a good reason for including that in their instincts.

As each bird flaps its wings, it creates uplift for the next bird. In a ‘V’ formation, the whole flock will add 71% more flying range than if each bird flew alone. Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to fly alone and quickly gets back into form.”

Like geese, people who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier than those who try to go it alone. When a goose gets tired, it rotates back into the formation and another goose flies at point formation. If people had as much sense as geese, they would realize that ultimately their success depends on working as a team by taking turns, doing the hard tasks, and sharing leadership.

Geese in the rear of the formation honk to encourage those up front to up their speed. It is important that our ‘honking from behind’ be encouraging; otherwise, it is just honking.”

  Can we learn from the geese? Take communities for instance:

 --What if we band together to improve our county by building on the positives and eliminating the negatives?

--What if we welcome new people to our communities, treat them as if they had been born here, and encourage them to take some of the responsibility?

--What if community leaders were to get together in a formation that depends on working as a team?

--What if more experienced citizens could “honk from be-hind” by voting their choice in elections and giving encouragement to new officials?

I felt more positive after reading this story. If the birds of the air can do it, I am sure Calhoun County can do it.

The Bible says this in Job 12: “Ask the . . . birds of the air and they will tell you . . . The soul of every living thing is in the hand of God . . . He alone knows what we should do; he understands.”

This Week's Editorial:

By Helen Morris:

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