Because Life Is More than Money              

     This month I’m typing a medley of a few different topics all in one writing. It may be a sweet sounding medley or it may sound  discordant. I pray you find it helpful or at least a little interesting.

     June 3, 1974, was my first day of working for Guaranty. Since then, I have had the wonderful blessing of doing banking with as many as four of the generations in the family tree for some of you. In the last few years several 20 somethings have returned to the family farm or business which was being operated by their great grandparents back in 1974. Now, I get to help provide banking to those 20 somethings. Those young folks are an essential ingredient to Guaranty’s future and to the future of north central Kansas.

     Vernon Giesler was the associate director of career planning and placement at Kansas State in 1973. Early in my senior year Vernon started training me and all the other soon-to-graduate ag students on how to hunt for a job and how to interview. One of his admonitions to us was “never turn down an interview”. So, when Vernon told me Dean Haddock, then President of Guaranty, wanted some ag seniors to go out to Beloit to interview for a job in his bank, I responded that I wasn’t interested in a bank job. I wanted a job with a purebred cattle ranch or a cattle feed company so I could work with cattle like I did growing up. Of course, Vernon said to go to Beloit and interview anyway. Now I’m glad Vernon pushed us to always take the opportunity to interview. You almost always will learn something, he would say. And, maybe something unexpected will happen. I did learn and something unexpected did happen. I hope, likewise, I can give Guaranty’s young customers and young employees some advice that will serve them well.

     Among many reasons I am still working at Guaranty and still enjoy my job is the broad ownership of Guaranty’s stock. No one person owns more than about 7% of the total shares. The board of directors and the officers do not have a majority shareholder to report to. We have many shareholders, all with equal voice. Many businesses thrive very well being owned by one person or members of one family or owned by a small group of folks. Guaranty thrives being broadly owned. And I am glad to be a part of both the board and the officers committee who together steward Guaranty.

     God willing and my health allowing, I look forward to many more years working for Guaranty. The plan over the next few years is for me to become chairman of the board when a CEO successor is appointed. If God is willing, as always.

     God often reminds me of His word at Proverbs 19:21, “Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” It was not my plan to become a banker. But, God’s purpose prevailed.

     Lastly, take heart with me that God’s purpose will prevail through all manner of violences. Planes loaded with innocent people being intentionally crashed, policeman being shot dead as they do their jobs and diners being shot dead while they eat in a restaurant will not thwart the purpose of God. God’s purpose will prevail through drought and flood. It will even prevail through the economic hardship of sub $3 per bushel wheat and corn prices. Never forget how forever God is. Never forget how sovereign He is. Never forget how good He is. No amount of violence diminishes or changes God.

     God loves you! Love Him and serve Him in return.

 

                                                                                                            Doug Johnson