Count your blessings this holdiay season

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 18, 2003

&uot;For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life&uot;. John 3:16

This is one of the most comforting scriptures in the entire Bible.

It calls for action on our part but it delivers the ultimate promise.

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When I was a boy, we sang a song in church which expressed the sentiment &uot;this world is not my home, I’m just a passing through&uot;.

The older I get the more I appreciate this thought.

When you are young, you think that life will never end and that hardships are what everyone else has to endure.

Each passing year seems to bring more comforts and conveniences to our lives, but the hardships and difficulties never go away.

So truly if this world were our final destination then, as the Bible says, &uot;we would be of all people most miserable&uot;.

I Cor. 15:19

In every real sense of the word, we who are Americans can truly count our blessings as we celebrate this holiday season.

I think it is hard to appreciate what we have in America unless we have traveled abroad.

There are pockets of places on this globe that are indeed delightful to visit, but no country on the planet has the aggregate wealth, beauty and opportunities which are available in America.

Each time I have gone abroad (and that has not been too often) I am always eager to come home.

I have often thought that if we could take those who march against our government and decry our value system and send them to some third world country for about a month, I believe they would come home with a different perspective and hopefully a different attitude.

And despite our nation’s attributes, there is much to be done to improve the quality of life for Americans.

I am particularly mindful of the rapidly increasing health problems that are so pervasive in our society.

I read a statistic last week that stated two out of every three Americans are overweight.

Almost 50 percent of our population does not engage in meaningful weekly exercise, and some 40 percent or more of our people have unmanageable credit card debt.

These are all signs of an undisciplined society.

If this trend continues, according to the &uot;experts&uot;, we can expect the face of America to change for the worse in the not too distant future.

The holiday season is certainly good for all of our spirits.

It helps us put aside some of our troubles and helps us focus on some of the more meaningful things in life.

I hope you and your loved ones have a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful year in 2003!

It is a high personal privilege to serve you in the State Senate, and remember &uot;I’ll go with you or I’ll go for you&uot; to help you solve any problem related to state government.

Senator Wendell Mitchell can be reached at 334-242-7883, or by writing to P O Box 225, Luverne, Alabama 36049.