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{}   *Picking Rocks* 


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Before we get to today's story I wanted to let you know about a new addition to our web site!  I just added a new page called "Creation News" that will give you an article on the leading news in the Creation/Evolution controversy each day.

This section also includes a rotating Question and Answer feature and a weekly Creation Comic strip from the people at

Be sure to come back and visit each day for an informative article that will help you keep up to date on the latest news in this controversial area!

From my family to yours,


Picking Rocks

By Al Batt

The family was cleaning out his desk. A heart attack had taken him from them  suddenly. The desk was full of partially finished projects, new proposals, business cards-the usual sort of stuff you would find in a desk of a man in his position. All those things and a rock. Not a small rock. A rock with some size to it. It took up most of a large drawer. His wife, although surprised to see it, knew exactly what it was. It was a rock picked from a field on their farm. The farm they lived on and operated when they were first married. The farm they sold when the children were young and the work became too much and the money became too little. Her husband had gotten a little more schooling and found a job in the city. Together they bought a beautiful home and did not do without the niceties of living. His hard work brought promotions and a good income. Most days came with a crisis or two, but life was good. The children graduated, married
and began families of their own. It all went so fast.

She looked at the rock. She remembered picking rocks alongside her husband. It was the day he was trying to teach her how to drive that old tractor, the WC Allis Chalmers, more than 10 feet without killing the engine. Picking rocks was not for sissies. It was hard work under a blazing hot sun, but it didn't matter. They were young, very much in love and so excited about their future on the farm. They had so many plans.

She looked at the rock and though she thought she had no more tears to shed, she cried. She wanted to go back. She wanted them to go back. She realized now that that had been living -- something he must have never forgotten.

The rest of the family began to carry boxes filled with his possessions to the car while his wife sat in his office and held that rock. She sat for a long time. In that rock she could see herself and her husband as young newlyweds and wondered why life had chosen this course for them.

Is there anyone who doesn't know an ex-farmer? They are everywhere. It is tough to make a living with 160 acres and small equipment. Farms are getting bigger and bigger. Is that a good thing or a bad thing? Opinions differ. A small farmer has a bad year, followed by another bad year with prospects for more of the same. Farming can be a happy life, but happiness can't buy money. Maybe with our government so far in debt, money won't be around much longer anyway?

Farming offers its share of peace, independence, solitude and of course, stress, every job's partner. Farmers talk about having to "get a job" in order to make ends meet. It is not a happy time when the decision is made that another job is required in order to support a farming habit. This is more than a mere complication in one's life. Working in town can lead to a complete change of occupation. Work ethic, innocence and honor all grow well from the soil. Good families have been the true bumper crops produced by the farms of this country. I hope we never reach the point where we find these things to no longer be a necessity in our lives.

It is a shame that we cannot all do what we want to do in life. Call me a romantic, my wife will disagree with you. We compromise. We don't farm, we garden. We can't help it, we were brought up that way. I remember when I was a small boy helping my father milk the cows.

"Farms are nice, Dad," I said. "But they sure don't have much of what you can find in the city."

Dad's reply was, "Thank the Lord!"

Al Batt

Write Al and let him know what you thought of his story!


Al Batt picks rocks on a farm near Hartland, Minnesota. Besides being a husband to Gail, father and grandfather; Al is a newspaper columnist, a radio and TV personality, a storyteller, a tour leader and an avid birder.


Thought For The Day:

"You never saw a fish on the wall with its mouth shut."-- Sally Berger

Verse for the Day:

"The wise in heart accepteth commands, but a chattering fool comes to ruin." --Proverbs 10:8

Kid's Thought For The Day:

"To make a see-saw work, you have to take turns being down."

Parent's Thought For The Day

"The highlight of my childhood was making my brother laugh so hard that food came out of his nose." --Garrison Keillor

Coach's Thought For The Day

"An advantage to volleyball is that you have a scoreboard to tell how you have done as a team. The thing is, in life there is no scoreboard, at least not one that you can see." --John Kessel

Writer's Thought For The Day:

"Don't be afraid to discard work that you know isn't up to standard. Don't try to save junk just because it took you a long time to write it." --David Eddings

Deep Thought For The Day:

"I went to the bookstore and bought a thesaurus for my writer friend. I thought it was very nice, pleasurable, agreeable, copasetic, and decent thing to do."


Inspired Audio -- Inspirational Audio Message of the Week!

Inspired Audio is a brand new offshoot of  Every week we will offer a different audio message that you can listen to right on your comput as you are surfing the net or just getting things done around the house.  Be sure to come back and visit each week! 

This Week: "What is Truth" by Jeff Williams


Michael's updated book Heart Touchers "Life-Changing Stories of Faith, Love, and Laughter," is finally here! ($13.95)

Visit the link below to preview the book!  Personalized autographed copies are available at no extra charge and we pay the shipping for you!  An E-book version is also available for just $3.25!

Be sure to let us know who you would like it autographed for and then allow about two weeks for us to sign it and send it on its way to you.Credit card, PayPal, Checks, and Money orders accepted! The book is also available through,,, and



Over 100,000 people have listened to popular Chicken Soup Author Michael T. Powers' free inspirational message entitled: "Breathing Life into Others".  If you aren't one of them just visit: and click on the link to listen to the free streaming audio message!


Video Imagery --Michael's Video Production Business

Dear Michael,

"I just wanted to take a minute to thank you for the beautiful video you made for me! It was so special to see both of my parents in tears as they watched their children grow up in pictures before their eyes! I loved the way you made Estania's part set aside from the rest--that was the part that really got them! The music was beautiful. My mom kept blubbering, "What song is that?" I don't know how you did such a beautiful job with the video in such a short time. I really appreciate your doing it so quickly. You have a wonderful gift, and I thank God that you are using it to create such sentimental memories. I hope that I can find my niche like that in an area that I love. Your video gave us one of our most lasting Christmas memories! I hope yours was filled with moments to be treasured forever!"
Silverhill, AL

Let me make you a video from your photos!
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Transfer your photographs or old home videos over to DVD or MP4 files! Give the gift that will touch your family's heart and soul.

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Touching Lives - One E-mail at a Time!
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