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Different Perceptions of What Makes a 'Ridge'

A story is told of a man from Colorado who came to northern Minnesota one autumn for deer hunting. The Mid-westerners who hosted him planned to "drive the woods" the afternoon of the opening day of the season. They instructed their friend to walk down the road until he reached the ridge, and then stand on it in order to get a shot at any deer running out of the woods. After giving him a head start, they fanned out in a straight line and began walking slowly through the woods in his direction.

When they finally emerged from the woods, however, they were surprised to find no one standing on the ridge. In fact, the Colorado hunter was nowhere to be seen. They drove down the road looking for him, and eventually found him several miles away, still walking, still looking for the ridge. For a man who lived in the Rockies, the hump of earth pushed up on the far edge of the open field just beyond the woods simply didn't qualify in his mind as a "ridge." But in northern Minnesota, which is utterly flat as far as the eye can see, it is called a "ridge" to this day. And it is the only ridge around; if he had walked a mile or so further, he would have crossed the border into Canada.

Possible Preaching Angles: Marriage; Teamwork; Relationships; Parenting; Leadership; Church Boards—The problem arose because the hunter from Colorado had a different mental image or model of "ridge" than the hunters from Minnesota. The image we have of something—the way we picture it in our mind—can make a real difference in how we communicate with a spouse, a team member, a church member, and so forth.

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