Chappy’s corner… Thank God for Cold Water

Ole and Lars were hired to put in some fencing on a ranch. At noon time the old rancher shouted, “Time for lunch guys!”  As they get their plates Ole says, “This plate has some food still stuck to it.” The rancher replies, “That’s as good as cold water can get it.”  After lunch the rancher offers them some pie he made and once again the plates appear a bit dirty, so Lars says, “this plate looks a bit dirty.” The Rancher replied, “That’s as good as cold water can get it.”  After the pie both guys get up to leave, but a big old dog is laid out right in front of the door and won’t move.  Ole turns to the rancher and says, “Your dog won’t move.” The rancher shouts, “Cold Water you get out of there!”

My father in law, Don who lives in Wyoming and grew up on a ranch shared that story with me years ago and I’ve treasured it through the years. (I also have a gut feeling that particular story might be based more on fact than fiction.)  That story is one of many stories Don likes to share and I look forward to this Thanksgiving to hear a few more from him. His stories make most folks smile, but I share the “coldwater” story to remind us how “good” we have it in this land.  It is easy for us to forget the modern blessings we have. For example, two ladies were preparing the Thanksgiving dinner the one mother asked her daughter, “If you could only have one modern appliance, what would you want?” The daughter looked around and said, “I guess the refrigerator.” And then she asked her mother, “What would you want?” Her elderly mother replied, “Running water.”

There was a time many folks didn’t have running water and yet those people were still grateful. They were grateful for the food on the table, for the family and friends around that table, but most of all for the freedom this country gives.  Of course we know that freedom is not free.  True freedom costs and I’m not referring to taxes but rather to those men and women who put on the uniform and fight to defend that freedom, or to the law enforcement officers who daily serve and protect others.  These individuals are committed to preserving our freedom and protecting lives, even if it means sacrificing their own lives.   What those people do is a good reason for us to give thanks this season even if our plate is not full or all we have to wash dishes with is cold water, we can still thank God for the sacrifices these folks make.

Their sacrifices remind one of what Jesus said, “No greater love can a man have than this to lay down his life for his friends.”  Jesus spoke those words before he would go to the cross to suffer and die in order to set people free from sin and death. Jesus gave up everything so all who trust in Him could have true freedom from sin and have a life now and forever with God.  Because of what Jesus did many folks including our gang in Wyoming will be giving thanks this Thanksgiving!   Because of what  Christ did we can thank God even if we have to wash those dirty dishes with cold water.

That’s just my thoughts from this SE corner of South Dakota!

Have a blessed Thanksgiving!


CH (COL) David Gunderson