If you haven’t noticed, our little “Mayberry” is changing.
For those not old enough to remember, Mayberry was the fictional community in the 60’s “The Andy Griffith Show” which served as a metaphor for the perfect place to live. As far as I’m concerned, Johnson City still is, but the big city is creeping in along with its problems.
Several years ago, an Airstream dealer next to the Pedernales River was busted for “theft by deception” and was wanted in Arizona for the kidnaping and sexual assault of a child. Also, some just-passing-through people from California were busted with 103 pounds of marijuana in their car by the JCPD.
Still, our city is pretty great. According to AreaVibes, a website that helps people find the best places to live in America, the overall crime rate in Johnson City is 62% lower than the Texas average. Our livability score is 76 which ranks 79% higher than other areas.
Yet Austin is getting ever nearer from the East with Alamo City creeping in from the south. With big city growth comes big city problems. I know. I used to live in the land of the knuckleheads. This little utopia may not last forever, but I do know how we can stave off the inevitable, for perhaps a few more years. But we all must do our part and it doesn’t involve building a wall on Highways 290 and 281, nor do we need to load our deer rifles with extra rounds. We certainly don’t have to panic either. The solution?
“Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott!” Martin Luther in 1529 penned those words in one of the most famous hymns ever: “A Mighty Fortress is Our God.”
And though this world, with devils filled,
Should threaten to undo us,
We will not fear, for God hath willed
His truth to triumph through us.
The triumph that comes through us will come in the power of prayer as we beseech God for His protection, not only for Johnson City, but for our county, the Great State of Texas, and for America. Thursday at 6:00pm, on the east side of the Courthouse in Johnson City, we will gather for the National Day of Prayer.
President Eisenhower signed the proclamation in 1953, saying, “I request all of our people to turn to Him in humble supplication on that day, in their homes or in their respective places of worship. With contrite hearts, let us pray for God’s help in solving the grave problems which confront us, and render thanks to Him for watching over our Nation throughout its history.” Every president since has signed a declaration designating a special day besides Sunday to pray.
“Before every major outpouring and awakening of God, prayer has preceded and paved the path for revival,” says the National Day of Prayer website. “As 2 Chronicles 7:14 reminds us, when we ‘humble ourselves and pray, and seek His face, and turn from our wicked ways’, then, He will ‘hear from heaven, forgive our sins, and heal our land.’ Friends, that’s still our promise today!”
The theme this year is from Colossians 2:6-7: “EXALT THE LORD, WHO HAS ESTABLISHED US.” We have bold access to His throne and passionate confidence as we pray because he has established us in this nation and is working in the heavenlies to accomplish all that He has purposed as we pray.
I’ll see you at the Courthouse! But, if not, you’ll know what to do.