EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD: Waiting for Elvis in the supermarket

2013-12-22T00:00:00Z EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD: Waiting for Elvis in the supermarketBy Mark Wilkins nwitimes.com
December 22, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Christmas, of course, is drawing most of our attention and energy, yet lurking in the shadows is New Year's, and the daunting prospect of the 365 days ahead. The waning year makes us wistful for days and traditions past.

One of those forgotten traditions that provided so much fun and merriment for me as a child was the annual supermarket tabloid editions advertising “Top psychic predictions for next year!”

Who could resist the evocative prediction, made by some nameless prognosticator, that aliens would invade the U.S. capital (perhaps a hopeful thought given the current state or our political affairs), or that Elvis would turn up alive and living as a grocer in the Midwest?

Sadly, these yellowed pages of yellow journalism have long since been relegated to the dusty recesses of yesteryear, but even for the best of us the prospect of a new year leaves us intrigued and perhaps just a bit anxious. All around us we are constantly reminded of crises – political, economic or natural. It is easy to look at dawning of a New Year as a daunting, if not outright frightening, proposition. Like the psychics in those tabloids, we seek to pry open the lid of the next year and peek inside, even if we are not sure we want to know what’s there.

Every year, every generation saw their time as particularly challenging and scary. Yet we continue on. It is a part of our very nature as the denizens of Northwest Indiana. We may not always march, but at least we slog forward.

So here are my predictions for Northwest Indiana for the next year:

We will continue to face challenges. Some dumb officials are going to get caught doing something they shouldn’t, our elected officials will continue to blame each other for everything that could possibly be wrong in our nation, and the pundits will continue to wring their journalistic hands. There will be good news and bad, scant signs of hope and the looming clouds of distress.

Yet through it all we will persist. Northwest Indiana, it seems, has a long history of persistence. Simply put, we find a way to make it work. We will face our problems (and perhaps even make a dent in a few) but as only a “region rat” walking through a blizzard can, we will duck our heads and shuffle our feet forward into the next year. And just maybe by the grace of God and our own inner grit, we will make it through.

Perhaps these predictions are nowhere near as titillating, nor as fun as those that once dotted the pages of our supermarket tabloids, but at least these predictions have history behind them, However, I am going to keep a keen eye out, just in case I see Elvis lurking in the diary aisle.

The Rev. Mark Wilkins is senior pastor of First United Methodist Church in Crown Point. The opinions are the writer's.

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