The OYE I Cannot Deny

“I believe that to live and work on a good farm, or to be engaged in other agricultural pursuits, is pleasant as well as challenging; for I know the joys and discomforts of agricultural life and hold an inborn fondness for those associations which, even in hours of discouragement, I cannot deny.” -E.M. Tiffany

When the news came out that the Oklahoma Youth Expo was having to conclude its event early, my phone began to blow up with messages from Ag Teachers, students, and show supporters asking for words of encouragement. As you might imagine, lots of tears and sadness, but if there is one thing that came to mind was the 2nd paragraph of The FFA Creed which I posted above.

…. for I know the joys and discomforts of agricultural life and hold an inborn fondness for those associations which even in hours of discouragement, I cannot deny.”

I want to post a statement of encouragement and perspective:
We can all agree that not being able to finish out OYE is indeed an hour of discouragement. Oklahoma Agriculture hurts for you today, but this hour of discouragement should not be our total focus. Let’s back up to the previous statement: “and hold an inborn fondness for those associations…..I cannot deny.”

An association is a group of people who unite for a common purpose. Or in this case, unite behind you.

To all the exhibitors who have to pack up early, ask yourself this question:
“Who helped me get here to OYE?”
“Who has believed in me and invested in my project over and over again?”
“Who can I thank in my support system?”

An inborn fondness is a deep appreciation of esteemed gratitude for someone.

For some this might have been your first time to show at OYE, while others it might be your last time, don’t forget to take some time to thank those in your circle who have fought for this show, invested in your chance to show, and believed in you so much, no matter the issue, the crisis, the outcome, or the hour of discouragement. Perhaps it’s your ag teacher, your parent, the OYE Staff, an extension agent, or someone who came to watch you show.

So much so, that you can look back on your stock show experience and say, I have an inborn fondness, a deep appreciation, for the associations, for the people in my life, that during hours of discouragement, during times of hardship, I cannot deny, I could not be where I am today without them.”

In life, we may not always make it to the top of the mountain, but we can be thankful for the folks who have been there for us through the hills and valleys. #HoursofDiscouragement #ICannotDeny #EMtiffany #OYE #OklahomaYouthExpo #KeepOnKeepingon

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Brandon Baumgarten

Brandon Baumgarten grew up in the small town of Oilton, Oklahoma and was elected to serve the Oklahoma FFA Association as State Secretary, State President, and as a National Officer Candidate representing nearly 25,000 students on the local, state, and national levels from 2011-2013. Afterwards, Brandon launched his speaking career and authored the highly sought after leadership book, Caught Up & Called Out, hoping to help others see the impact they can make on this world. He is a professional speaker, speaking at over 100 different events each year, and a graduate from Oklahoma State University in Agricultural Leadership, and was even named a top 10 student. He is a Zig Ziglar Legacy & Youth Certified Presenter and his message is always to engage, encourage, and empower you to do something big in your life! No matter if you are a student, teacher, parent, or business executive, Brandon's presentations are certain to make you laugh, think, and realize your impact is about to begin!

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