New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 15, 1987, New Braunfels, Texas
Herakf-Zoffune, New Braunfels, Texas
Sunday. February 15,1987
God offers us power of self-love
Permanent School Fund faces ruination
By Dr. JOHN I. WALKER
Before we can love others, we must love ourselves. Self-love is not narcissism. It is not asking the mirror, "Who is the fairest of them all?” Self-love is not thinking of ourselves to the exclusion of others. It is not the pursuit of wealth, power and beauty.
Self-love means accepting our limitations and appreciating our talents. "Do you not know that you are God’s temple and God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (I Cor. 3:16) If our bodies represent the temple of God, then our bodies are worth taking care of; if God’s Spirit dwells in us, then we are responsible for allowing that Spirit to develop to the fullest. Self-love, then, means taking care of our bodies, accepting our limitations and striving to grow emotionally, intellectually and spiritually.
Accepting our limitations. Recently, a friend’s son became dejected because he had played a poor game of basketball. The boy made a couple of poor passes, missed some easy shots, and failed to block out when rebounding. The coach pulled him from the game. The following game the boy had no confidence. He hesitated to shoot and was reluctant to pass the ball.
He looked scared and insecure.
My friend wisely talked to his son He told him, "Everybody makes mistakes. Nobody is perfect The important part of playing basketball is give it all you’ve got. If you are not giving it all you’ve got. you are cheating yourself and your teamates Champions always keep trying.”
My friend went on to tell his son. Whether you make your shots or miss your shots, your mother and I still love you. All we want you to do is to shoot joyfully and play with enthusiarn."
The following game, the boy scored 14 points but more importantly, he played with enthusiasm and confidence.
Self-love, then, is not getting down on ourselves because when we get down on ourselves and criticize ourselves, we limit our potential I .earn from our mistakes, yes. Ask God to forgive our sins, yes. But then get on with it. Otherwise we become morose, gloomy, depressed. We are good for no one. least of all ourselves. We are cursing God’s temple
Unfortunately, many people go through life unwilling to accept that they are not perfect In their frenetic drive to do everything the correct way. they miss the spontaneity of living. They become self-absorbed, but they don’t love themselves.
Taking care of our bodies. When we say that we "love” our car, we take care of it We wash it. wax it. polish it. We make certain that the itll is changed and all the engine parts run smoothly We put the best gasoline in it. If we love ourselves, we take care of our bodies all the more. We maintain proper weight, practice regular physical exercise, get the proper amount of rest and relaxation, avoid cigerettes, and limit our alcohol intake
Intellectual growth. If we love ourselves we work hard not only to develop our bodies but also our minds. We read. We study. We learn something new each day. Sir William Osier, one of the greatest minds in medicine, reported that he was not overly endowed with brilliance. He simply .studied harder and longer than his colleagues. "The master word is work,” Osier said.
If we truly loved ourselves we would develop our intellect. We are lazy. We prefer to gripe and complain about how fortunate other people are rather than working to improve our lot. Gripe less, read more and our careers will skyrocket.
Emotional growth. We grow emotionally by working on our personality and character structure. Part of this growth means accepting our limitations and forgiving ourselves for our faults. Growing emotionally also means respecting our feelings. We set limits on our feelings, we harness them so that our feelings work for us to provide us with the energy needed to accomplish the tasks of daily living. When we love ourselves we avoid complaining, demanding, blaming and ridiculing.
On the other hand, we allow our feelings to shine through in spontaneity and good will. We laugh loudly and see the joy in daily experiences. We recognize the need for affection and tenderness. We make life a joyful journey. We bring delight into relationships.
Spiritual growth. The ultimate in self-love is developing ourselves spiritually. Our aim in life is to become one with God. In our travel Godward, we attempt to allow all hostility, resentment, anger, frustration, envy, to drop away so that only the spirit of love remains. To allow the Kingdom of God that is within all of us to grow, requires daily prayer and meditation. We actively pray for wisdom and for love, and we also set aside a few minutes everyday for silence to allow God to talk to us Silent meditation for a few minutes each day allows us to transcend our ego and pride. Silent meditation can tx* practiced anytime, but it is most practical to meditate either early in the morning or late at night, (iet into a comfortable position, away from all possible interruptions, close your eyes and say to yourself: "Relax and let go.’’
Keel the tension draining away from you muscles and then focus on the presence of God Whenever an intrusive thought enters you mind, recognize the intrusive thought and simply go back to thinking of God With silent meditation we comprehend the flower and presence of God as we move toward love’s light Through meditation we can better understand our place and the will of God for us in every aspec t of our lives
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Monday day off for banks
City and federal government as well as all local banking facilities w ill suspend operations Monday in observance of President’s Day. The county courthouse will remain open.
Trash collection in New Braunfels also will continue uninterrupted by the national holiday.
President’s Day takes into observance the birthday's of both Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln
Keep an ear to the ground on local events
By WILLIAM N. KIRBY Education Commissioner
The Permanent School Fund (PSF) is one of Texas’ most enduring and important legacies to future gnerations. Over its 133-year history, the Fund has helped pay for part of the costs of educating millions of texas school children.
Yet, despite the past success and future potential of the Fund, it is being threatened by some very short-sighted proposals to resolve the state’s current fiscal crisis.
Created with an initial $2 million appropriation by the 1854 Texas Constitution, the Permanent School Fund was established as a trust fund that would forever guarantee a portion of the costs of public education. The only time in history that it has been raided was in 1861, when some of the funds were used to purchase Confederate railroad bonds. Defaults on those bonds and the devaluation of Confederate currency nearly bankrupted the Fund.
Since 1900. the Permanent School Fund has paid out nearly $3.5 billion to school districts. More than $5 billion from the sale and rental of public lands and from mineral rights on public land and tidelands has been deposited into the Fund These assets are invested in stocks and bonds, which give the Fund a current market value of $7.7 billion.
Interest and dividends from PSF investments, coupled with certain dedicated tax revenues, make up the Available School Fund. This fund provides an equal per student allotment to all Texas school districts each year. with the remainder of the costs of public education paid from the general revenue sources - tax dollars. The PSF now provides a total of $533 million a year, or $226 per child, to local school districts Ten years ago, it provided just $33 per child annually, lf the PSF’s earning capacity is preserved, it is expected to provide local school districts w ith $6.7 billion over the next IO years That's an average of $670 million each year tha taxpay ers will not have to raise
The key to ensuring this tremendous resource for our children lies in keeping the PSF intact. In the past year, as the decline of the oil and gas industry has thrust the state into severe economic straits, some interest has been expressed in amending the Texas Constitution to allow some of the principal of the PSF to be expended For the sake of our children
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and our state’s long-term economic success, we cannot allow this to happen.
There are only two ways the Fund can grow - oil and gas revenues from public lands and from the capital gains that are realized through investments. As out state’s current economic crisis so well points out, oil and gas revenues are a depletable and finite resource. Income from capital gains, on the other hand, can increase only if the principal is maintained. If the principal is spent, investment earnings that make up the Available School Fund will decline significantly; and the less revenue provided by the ASF, the more tax dollars in general revenue funds it will take to finance public schools.
Hence, any expenditure of the principal of the PSF will be tantamount to a tax bill on future generations. Ix>st principal from the Fund would significantly impair its potential for growth, and the lost income eventually would have to be replaced by tax dollars. Money spent from the principal is lost forever; whereas money preserved will be able to grow indefinitely and offset larger and larger portions of the overall state costs of public education.
A raid on the Permanent School Fund would have other negative results that would affect local school districts and. ultimately, local taxpayers. In 1983, the voters of Texas approved a constitutional amendment that allows the principal and income of the PSP’ to be used to back locally-issued school bonds. This bond guarantee
program particularly helps poor school districts which cannot get good bond ratings - or in some cases, any ratings at all - to issue bonds at the lowest possible interest rates. If the principal of the Fund is allowed to be spent, any school district that is not AAA-rated on its own would have to pay additional financing charges when it borrows to build new facilities, at a substantial extra cost to local taxpayers. A raid on the Fund would seriously jeopardize the bond guarantee program as it was envisioned by the Legislature and approved by the voters of Texas. It also would threaten the excellent credit rating of the Fund itself.
Those who advocate invading the PSF to help resolve today’s financial problems would argue that it makes good business sense. But does it? Does it make sense to use your retirement money to pay overdue bills today, leaving you without any savings to face the future’.'
The only way our state can diversify its economy and regain its financial health for the future is to have a high quality education sy stem, and an excellent education system must be adequately financed. I urge every Texas taxpayer to fight against any move to tap into the Permanent School Fund. Ix*t your legislators know that you want to protect this legacy. The Fund belongs to you. your children and all Texans. We should not. for expediency ’s sake, sell out the inheritance our forefathers so wisely provided for generations of Texas school children.
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