Thoughts of spring

The first day of spring (March 20) will soon be upon us. While we relish the warmer temperatures, we should have some appreciation for what the harshness of winter means. The cold temperatures experienced in the High Plains likely means bugs will not so easily appear. Hopefully.

For farmers, it means a time to turn their attention to getting ready to plant spring crops. Being offered such a low price per bushel, producers are looking for ways to be more efficient. Each generation of farmers face unique challenges when it comes to survival. Innovators are not afraid to take calculated risks and often end up being the ones able to hand off the farm to the next generation.

I applaud those who step out of their comfort zone to learn about the latest production techniques. At High Plains Journal, I have seen first-hand the interest producers have in controlling their expenses while maximizing their profits. In my 30-plus years as a professional observer it has been interesting to watch how farmers are able to squeeze down expenses and remain optimistic as they re-enter the fields.

Farmers are aptly called the eternal optimists. Hearing their optimistic stories, is one of the biggest reasons I am thankful for my job.  All of us naturally want to feel secure and positive and farmers have rightfully earned the label.

Speaking of eternal optimists, a tip of the cap to the life of evangelist Billy Graham who recently passed away at age 99. I had an opportunity to hear him speak once and he was something to behold.

Graham was a rock star in a world that did not want to hear his message about Jesus Christ and yet his message turned non-believers into believers. His friend Johnny Cash was among the superstars who performed in his concerts and gave testimony. Able to stay above the fray, including the mega ministers with mega millions quick to defend their fortresses, Graham lived a simple lifestyle. He tried to avoid issues that divided the country but when that was no longer possible he said what he believed God wanted him to say. Graham had the ear of every president from Harry Truman to Donald Trump.

Graham, who grew up on a dairy farm, will be missed by the masses on earth but his place in heaven is assured.

Dave Bergmeier can be reached at 620-227-1822 or [email protected].