"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." – John 1:1.

I was first drawn to the printed word when I was a child. From the time my mother read me stories from The Bible right up to when I could read comic books on my own, I gravitated to words on the printed page. Like no other media, reading has a profound effect on our intellect and influences our lives on a daily basis.

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." – John 1:1.

I was first drawn to the printed word when I was a child. From the time my mother read me stories from The Bible right up to when I could read comic books on my own, I gravitated to words on the printed page. Like no other media, reading has a profound effect on our intellect and influences our lives on a daily basis.

No doubt there was a reason why God in His infinite wisdom chose the printed page to bring his message to the world. He didn't wait until television and the social media came about to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ to earth. Though He did provide Moses a tablet to present the 10 Commandments.

I've always enjoyed reading. I graduated from the heroics of Superman and Batman inside the pages of comic books to biographies about the childhood of famous Americans and on to fantasy sports stories. My high school teachers and college English professors forced me to read the classics. I will challenge myself to revisit some of those classics and other good books upon retirement.

I was in the second semester of my sophomore year in college before I finally settled on becoming a journalist. I have always loved to write and tell stories. After looking through the requirements of several possible majors in the Harding College catalogue I finally decided on journalism.

I also became very interested in photography. There is an old cliche that says, "One picture is worth a thousand words." This may be the case but over time I was able to determine that photographic images stir up raw emotions while the printed word demands deep thought and reasoning.

My senior year Watergate was the top news story in the country. All of a sudden it seemed that almost every other college student wanted to become an investigative reporter like Woodward and Bernstein of "All the President's Men" fame.

I got my degree and landed a job with my hometown newspaper, "The Osceola Times." By the grace of God and the support of a wonderful family, here I am today.

I'm not going to waste your time here with me chronicling a career that spans 39 years. Over the years, I have seen many changes in the industry – from the ancient manual typewriter to the laptop computer on which I am composing this final installment of Random Thoughts.

The years have been filled with up and downs, bumps and bruises, smiles and broken hearts. I have received my fair share of thanks and accolades as well as blame and false accusations. I hope I have made you stop and think or filled your thoughts with memories of a kinder, gentler time.

If I had it to do over, I don't think I would change much. Journalism, as it was meant, is a noble profession. There is an enormous amount of responsibility associated with the presenting nothing but the facts as actor Jack Webb of Dragnet fame would have put it. Things have changed dramatically during the past four decades. The media has decided to use its agenda to stir up emotions for causes which may or not be right.

As a writer and a reader I want to encourage everyone to seek the truth. There is one absolute truth – God.

Today, I am officially retiring from The Helena World. However, I am not retiring from the printed word. I plan to express myself in a different form – Christian fiction. I think there are people out there that want to read about the good side of life. We hear enough about the strife, crime and war that is going on this earth. Life should be based on Christian principles and relationships.

If I have touched, reached or helped just one person through this weekly endeavor, then it has been well worth the time spent behind the keyboards all these years.

In your random thoughts, please encourage someone to read or write before it becomes a lost right and free form of communication.