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Category: News - Features (Archived) Created: 11/22/2001 02:56 AM
URL(s): N/A Updated: 11/26/2001 06:22 PM
Happy Thanksgiving!
Merlin's Thanksgiving Message
By Mike Whaley

Wanna do this? Just put an aluminum foil bikini on your turkey, and when it's done cooking - viola! You have a hot chick for dinner! (sorry, couldn't resist...)
Hi, Merlin here... Happy Thanksgiving! We here at the OV-10 Bronco Association are thankful for many things, and first among them are all of our wonderful members and friends. All of our goals, events, plans and property only exist due to the participation of everyone who has taken the time to support us. From the well-known movers and shakers that have devoted thousands of hours towards running the group, right down to the folks in the background who might just send a quick email with an idea or comment, these people are what makes the OBA what it is. As we provide direction for the group, we work hard so as not to let these people down, and we truly are thankful for the opportunity to serve them. We are thankful for having a good climate to operate effectively in - no needless bureaucracy, differences of opinion are worked out to become more thorough solutions, we have opportunities to reach goals soon that we didn't think would be obtainable for several years, and we are able to work together harmoniously. We even have fun, at least most of the time! Yes, we do have much to be thankful for.

On a very personal note (here's a soapbox, might as well use it) I would just like to say that in today's world - so full of war and fear and evil of all kinds - it's more important than ever to hold onto the fact that we are still very, very blessed. It's a remarkable thing just to be alive and to be afforded enough freedom to even have time to be interested in things like old airplanes. It's very important to recall that regardless of one's hard work or "luck" or any other factor, all blessings originally come from God, in accordance with His great plan, and we must treat them as such. Our society often leads us to feel somehow wronged or afflicted for not having as much money as someone else, or for not having a new enough car, or for not being as good as someone else in any number of ways, or for having to experience unpleasant times in our lives. But that's NOT the truth! God even warned us that the world is full of darkness and will not acknowledge that all good things come from God alone. When we have nice things or are successful in some way or are healthy enough to be above room temperature, these things only happen because God wants them to. He owns everything... all money, all items, all jobs, our talents, our food, our shelter, our lives, and our souls were uniquely created by Him and bestowed upon us according to His perfect will. It is solely due to God's grace and love for us that He permits us to use and enjoy whatever we have, and we must never forget that! When we lack in something or have something unpleasant occur in our lives, there is a God-given purpose in that too... haven't you ever wanted something, but didn't get it, and much later found out more information that made you really glad that you didn't get what you thought you wanted? That's God at work!

Of all the things in my life, I am most thankful for the fact that God sent Jesus into our world and that He loved us so much that he freely chose to pay the required penalty for all our sins, so that all who believe in Him may have the joy of perfect eternal life that can only exist in the very presence of God Himself. I am thankful that while the world is full of much darkness indeed, God has blessed us with many lights within it that call us to better things. I am thankful for the Bronco Association, and by that, I mean all those people who have had a part in getting to where we are today and where we'll be tomorrow. I am thankful for the fact that I live in a nation that is up to the challenge of dealing with the situation created by the events of September 11th, and I'm thankful for the support of good people everywhere that have strengthened us and have been strengthened by us. I am thankful for our servicemen and women who do whatever it takes to protect our freedoms, and I am thankful for the hundreds of millions of Americans that have stepped up to let them know how important they are and support them as they do this incredibly difficult job. I am thankful for my wonderful girlfriend Kristin and her whole family, and for all my other great friends whom I'm afraid to try to list for fear of omitting someone by mistake (but they know who they are.) I'm even thankful for having been laid off a while ago, because it allowed me to devote more time to improving this website and catch up on other things that I otherwise wouldn't have had enough time for. There are just so many things. This life ain't perfect, but the more you look for your own personal blessings, the more you realize that there are always just too many to count!

We all realize that life consists of a lot more than the Bronco Association. My prayer is that our little group can be something more than just an airplane museum. I hope we will always be an organization that gives you back more than you put in. I, and the entire OBA staff, will continue to do everything possible to ensure that your participation is enjoyable, rewarding, and has significance. We're all very thankful for the fine group of people we've met along the way that have all helped in their own way to build OBA to what it is, and will carry it towards what it will become.

Don't eat too much turkey on Thursday... you have to save enough for at least one full week's worth of leftovers!

Mike "Merlin" Whaley
OBA Webmaster

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