There are many places in this country that most people don’t know about.
My Mom talks often about a place called “Otter Tail, Minnesota,” where one of her pen pals lived.
I don’t remember hearing much about it when we were growing up, but I sure do know about it now.
I have even looked it up on the Internet, and it is a rather small place still, about the size of Nashville (or smaller).
A lot of people around the country had no idea that Nashville was not just the capital of Country music, but also the name of a small town fifty miles west of St. Louis in Illinois.
Our town of Nashville was not widely known until a young girl bravely sought help after a plane crash that killed her family.
Her bravery caught the attention of most of America, and now most of America knows of our small town.
Ferguson, Missouri was just a medium sized town on a map until the shooting of a young black man ignited tensions long simmering.
That situation caught the attention of the world, and now everyone knows at least the name of the town of Ferguson, Missouri.
Most school children hope to be noticed for something good or something that they get right on a test.
Some get noticed for the acting out that they do for whatever reason.
Criminals get noticed for the anti-social acts that they do, like stealing or worse.
Clergymen and volunteers are mostly noticed for good that they do for people.
Sometimes a person or place is noticed in a rather subtle way.
Last week when the St. Louis news station was on for hours tracking the violent weather, a friend pointed something out to me, something that I had not noticed until then.
He said that Nashville and Ferguson were both displayed as points of reference on the map.
And so are cataloged points of contention and bravery.