Meanderings of a Minister

Unsung Heroes
January 1, 2012, 7:42 pm
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When I moved to Liberal, one of the first things I noticed was that the air sometimes has a pungent odor.  Since I had not lived in a town with an active beef packing plant in the past, I did not know what it was at first.  When I found out, I would say, “Man, it stinks today!”  People would tell me it was the smell of money.  I actually said on one occasion, “If money smells like that, I don’t want any!”

There is no disguising some things about National Beef, but there are some things that National Beef does to benefit our community and it is time someone brought some of this to light.  Before I go further, allow me to say that I do not work for them.  They have not paid me to endorse them.  I do not stand to gain anything from recognizing them, other than knowing it should be done.  Having said that, allow me to proceed.

Just before Thanksgiving, for the last couple of years, I have received a phone call from National Beef indicating that they know the economy has been tough and people are hungry.  The indicated that the corporation, and its employees, understood how blessed they were to have jobs because so many others don’t.  Because of this, they wanted to give back.  They wanted to know if the churches of the Liberal Ministerial Alliance could use some Thanksgiving Baskets of food.  I assured them that we could and what they did blew me away.  They asked me how many we could use.  I did not want to be greedy, so I contacted the other pastors in the area and found out that we could use about 100 baskets.  I was afraid this would be too much.  Their response, “That’s all?  We were hoping to do more.”  I went back to the phones and the number increased to 150.  This year, the figure increased again to 175.

A couple days before the Thanksgiving holiday, last year and this year, National Beef employees started showing up with 10 pound sacks of potatoes, packages of brown and serve rolls, green beans, corn, stuffing, gravy, pumpkin pies, cranberry sauce and huge, 22 pound turkeys!  Keep in mind that they purchased all of this food from local grocery stores.  They did not go outside the area, but supported the Liberal economy while helping others!

This is just one example of National Beef’s commitment to, and blessing of our community.  In just this last year, I have seen them support everything from school events, to community events, to civic events, concerts, scholarships, Cinco De Mayo and much more.  Plus, I had the privilege of being with them for their employee appreciation picnic and was simply amazed at how much money they spent on their employees, just to say thank you.

With a tough economy, National Beef does not have to do any of this, but they do.  They don’t make a big deal out of it, they just serve our community and do it well.  The next time you drive by the plant, smell the smells, or see their employees out and about, why not take the time to thank God for using National Beef in our community?  Why not take the time to pray for them, for their continued safety and success?  Why not take the time to appreciate the hard and dirty work most of their employees do each day and the decisions they make to give back to the Liberal community?

Not everyone may agree, but this is one pastor, citizen and man that recognizes what little I know about what National Beef does and I would like to say, “Thank you.”


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