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Our Thoughts: A new year is upon us
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The first week of the new year is under our belts.

Some firsts of the year have happened. And it is a good week of firsts.

The new Chairman of the Board of Commissioners has chaired his first meeting and the new Board has served at their first meeting. The City of Covington has approved the first readings towards the newest retail and office complex in the community. The first storm of the year has passed through. The first baby in Newton County has been born.

This week also marked the first debut of Hometown Highlights, our newest feature.

For some, it marked the first week of changes in behavior with resolutions: stress less, stop drinking soda, exercise more, make strides towards significant life goals, be more organized, go to church more regularly.  

According to our online reader poll, more people did not keep their New Year’s resolutions last year.

Perhaps 2017 will be the year to change that – the first in a long line of successful changes. Many would agree that changes need to be made, in our individual lives, in our community, in our state, and in our country.

We don’t necessarily all agree on what those changes should be but it seems that “change” in itself is desirable.

Except, as the saying goes, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

That is to say, we welcome the firsts of the year, the efforts to keep our resolutions and the changes we wish to make for the better. We welcome change that comes our way.

We also appreciate the tried and true things of our community.

At this week’s prayer breakfast, cohosted by our local Kiwanis and Rotary clubs, a statement was made by the guest speaker, Trudy Cathy White. Ms. White, daughter of the late Truett Cathy of ChickfilA fame, said that everyone has a story to tell.

We at The Covington News strongly believe this. In fact, we believe it so much that it is our tagline – “telling the story of your life.” We have been doing it for a while (the volume number stands at 152).

This community is full of people with great stories to tell: people who have done noteworthy things, people who are doing extraordinary things.

And we are the people who are willing to listen, really listen, to their stories.

Perhaps their story is a story of a first. Perhaps it is regarding change. Perhaps it is simply the small success of making it a week sticking to a resolution.

Perhaps it is any combination of those and much more that makes those stories worth listening too.

So this year, this week, let us resolve to listen. Listen to our parents and children, listen to our elders. Listen to our elected officials and leaders, listen to our constituents. Listen to our teachers, listen to our readers. Listen to our neighbors, listen to our friends.

Listen, Newton County. There is a great story being told. And you are part of it.