PO Box 239, Pratt, KS 67124

Surviving Storms

My wife and I spent some time in Kansas this last week. We were there during the familiar Spring storms. One thing certain in Kansas, is there will be rolling thunderstorms. It happens every year. Every year there are tornadoes. It’s just a fact of life in Kansas.

While tornadoes can be very dangerous, the biggest killers in a storm are flooding and lightning, and a common source of injury (to man, building, beast and crop) is hail.

The beasts of the prairie have unique responses to storms. Perhaps none more so than cattle and buffalo.

When a storm comes, cattle are primarily oblivious to it. They may even seek shelter from the rain by getting under a tree – the most dangerous place to be during a lightning storm. On the open ground they will often just stand there waiting to get struck. I hear some talk of how sheep are dumb, try being around cattle for a while.

There are times when cattle run from a storm. Just think of that dynamic. Storms typically move about 35 miles per hour. A cow might hit 10 miles per hour, but not for long. So, when that first whack of hail thumps her on the bean and she takes off, she has just subjected herself to prolonged torture.

Buffalo survived on the plains for thousands of years. When a storm hits, they charge it. Buffalo are also faster than your standard Angus, with the ability of maintaining 35 miles per hour for a little distance. So as a storm rolls northeast (as they usually do) across the prairie, the buffalo are running southwest at about the same speed.

They pass the back of the storm and drop their heads and go back to eating.

Think About it

When I was a young man going through some crisis (usually a result of my own folly) Dad would tell me, “we’re not going to get over it; we’re going to get through it.”

That’s a good model for facing the storms in life. Don’t just stand there and let them beat you up. If you try to outrun them, you are just prolonging the pain. You can’t get over them.

Face them, go through them and learn from the experience.

The sun is still there on the other side.

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