The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The Wisdom Of Barnyard Bruke: "Don't Keep A Fire For An Enemy Or You'll Get Burnt"

Greetings to everyone in Western Illinois and extended wishes for a fulfilling New Year in 2009. May joy and peace follow your endeavors through out the new year.

It has been interesting sharing thoughts and communicating with Quill readers this past year, 2008. Your favorable comments and encouraging remarks have "spurred Ole Barnyard" along.

The first letter started out as a "one week, one time requested commitment from Dessa, and has certainly extended far longer than its original intent.

In fact, if you recall, Barnyard signed off last spring to pursue more noble goals of gardening, farm work observation, and watching the neighbors mud in their crops.

It is hoped you have been stimulated somehow by "Barnyard writings" and that our communities have found a closer bond as a result.

We have much to be proud of in Henderson and Hancock counties.

A cousin of mine, J. Marshall, shared with me a poem by Jill Hansen. It is worthy to share with you in this final writing of Barnyard Bruke for 2008. I'm a hop'in you'll give it some serious reflection:

Twas the night before Jesus came and all through the house,

Not a creature was praying, not one in the house.

Their Bibles were lain on the shelf without care

In hopes that Jesus would not come there.

The children were dressing to crawl into bed,

Not once ever kneeling or bowing a head.

And Mom in her rocker with baby on her lap,

Was watching the Late Show while I took a nap.

When out of the East there arose such a clatter,

I sprang to my feet to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash

Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash!

When what to my wondering eyes should appear?

But angels proclaiming that "Jesus is here".

With a light like the sun sending forth a bright ray

I knew in a moment this must be THE DAY!!!

The light of His face made me cover my head.

It was Jesus!! Returning just like He said.

And though I possessed worldly wisdom and wealth,

I cried when I saw him, in spite of myself.

In the Book of Life which He held in His hand

Was written the name of every saved man.

He spoke not a word as He searched for my name,

When He said, "It's not here" my head hung in shame.

The people whose names had been written with love,

He gathered to take to His father above.

With those who were ready He rose without a sound

While all the rest were left standing around.

I fell to me knees, but it was too late;

I had waited too long and thus sealed my fate.

I stood and I cried as they rose out of sight;

Oh, if only we had been ready tonight.

In the words of this poem the meaning is clear,

The coming of Jesus is drawing near.

There's only one life and when comes the last call

We'll find that the Bible was true after all!

Keep yer' nose to th' grindstone, keep your latch string open fer goodwill,

Don't keep a fire for an enemy or you'll get burnt, and don't get fried in your own grease.

Whilst at times in "08", weather and economic happenings seemed like 40 miles a' bad road, let's not worry over spilt milk-let's just find ourselves another cow.

Have a wonderful New Year and I'll catch up to ya in "09" in a whip-stitch.

Catch ya later

Barnyard Bruke