Junior High Lady Hounds get season-opening sweep Lady Devils roll past Paint Valley in season opener Senior Profile: Jessica Johnson Michael E Roberts Sr Evelyn L Jones Thomas M Calvert Ryan, Sowards lead Lady Indians to easy win in season opener, 57-36 over Felicity Senior Profile: Wes Hayslip Justice off to hot start at VSU County boys’ squads on display in annual SHAC Preview Night ‘Operation Christmas Child’ collects 1,707 shoe boxes for needy children Two animal cruelty cases investigated in Adams County DP&L considers closing power-generating plants in county Holiday spirit makes an early appearance in Adams County Chester A Mann Jeffrey A Daley Sr Michael G Tincher DAR sponsors Good Citizen Award Ohio’s young hunters harvest nearly 6,000 deer during Youth Gun Season Senior Profile: Kayle Thomas Helen N Hiestand Rev Walter R Egnor Sr Betty Beam Jamie L Corrill Jeffrey L Heppard Edsel L Massey Jr It is time to stop and take time to give thanks on a special day Another year to be very thankful for Senior Profile: Savannah McCoy McCoy signs to continue golf career at SSU North Adams hosts SHAC Girls Preview DAR commemorates 50th anniversary of Vietnam War Historical Society honors veterans Star Wars routine leads Fancy Free Cloggers to ‘America’s Got Talent’ A Day at the Opera Eagle Creek draws community to Thanksgiving celebration Ward ekes out victory over Worley in county commissioner race Mary A Garman Ronald L Palmer Joseph S McClanahan II Emma O Hayslip Devils slip by Georgetown in Foundation Game Hupp, Hunter, Wolke named OSSCA Second Team All-State Senior Profile: Kain Turner Lady Devils romp in Foundation Game Oh, those aromas coming from Mom’s kitchen What Became My Biggest Project Deer gun season set to begin ‘Trees to Textbooks’ shares revenues with local schools and communities BREAKING NEWS Winchester’s Baxter wins Miss Ohio USA 2017 pageant Genny Elkins Pauline S Stevenson Donald E Lewis Sr Charlotte R Seaman Ruth Prater Bennie Skaggs Gertrude Swayne West Union High School hosts impressive Veterans Day ceremonies Peebles Elementary hosts ceremony to honor local veterans Duke Energy exits Killen and Stuart Plants GE Aviation hosts annual Veterans Day celebration Senior Profile: Logan Gordley Jeffrey A Brown Sr Peebles Library welcomes local author and survivor on Nov. 19 Homer C Eldridge Robert W Schomberg One Commissioner race too close to call in unofficial count Voters approve majority of county levies on Tuesday’s election ballot NAES Sixth Graders practice the democratic process Honoring one who gave the ‘last full measure of devotion’ Overcoming adversity, veteran of Iraq War opens local business Senior Profile: Ben Figgins Senior Profile: Macy Mullenix SHAC Basketball Previews are set for Nov. 18 and 25 Trio of local golfers finish careers with trip to the highest level of high school competition Peebles sophomore Jenny Seas finishes sixth in OHSAA state cross-country meet Upset win sends Trump to the White House ACRMC awarded plaque for 50 years of service Peebles Elementary releases Honor Roll for First Nine Week Grading Period BREAKING ELECTION NEWS! Senior Profile: Jordyn Kell Orlie H Kirker Military homecoming at NAES Second half spells doom as Greyhounds fall to Hillcrest 42-12 in finale Senior Profile: Sarah McFarland WU’s Horton will continue golf career at SSU Lady Devils’ season ends in heartbreak with 3-2 loss in District championship battle Christine R. Ritchey Operation Christmas Child begins Nov. 14 Mental Health levy on tomorrow’s ballot Wanda L. Nixon David Rogers Robert “Bobby” Leonard Keneth Waters Commissioner Worley seeks re-election Republican challenger vies for Commissioner’s seat Charles Cooper Thelma J White
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Jesus will comfort you

Wilma was in her late 80’s when referred to hospice for renal failure. I could tell by the way she looked at me that her trust had to be earned. She admitted, “I’ve been alone and depressed much of my life. I’ve never had any real friends. I’ve always been a loner. When three or four people were together I usually ended up sitting and saying nothing.” Wilma was perplexing, lonely, but at the same time, content. It just didn’t make sense but I guess most of us are living contradictions to some degree.

Wilma reflected on her childhood in South Philadelphia. “My mother was Irish Catholic and really strict. She would as just as soon slap your face as look at you. I can’t ever remember my mother putting her arms around me and telling me she loved me. She never showed me any affection. So I married young to escape from home.” But Wilma soon discovered that freedom can feel a lot like responsibility. She admitted, “It was hard.” Then suddenly, without warning, Wilma’s mind and spirit were transported to a previous time and place. And I just can’t find adequate words to describe the radiance of her countenance, the all encompassing smile, as she reflected on the two people who were to her, like an oasis in a desert.

Even though Wilma’s first husband left her, her mother-in-law remained faithful. Wilma and her two minor children lived with her mother-in-law in her boarding house. Wilma’s mother-in-law babysat for the children while Wilma worked. Wilma described her mother-in-law; “She was educated. She went to high school and then to business college. She was strict but gentle. She never raised her voice but she wouldn’t put up with any shenanigans either. If you pushed her she was fiery. She made the borders sign their names and if it wasn’t ‘Mr. and Mrs.______’, they weren’t allowed to stay.” Wilma added, “When I cried about how hard it was to raise children on my own, she would tell me, ‘Wilma, don’t cry, pray. Jesus will comfort you.’ So I did.”

The other oasis in Wilma’s desert was a Catholic Sister, her elementary school teacher. Wilma reminisced, “She always told us, ‘Jesus is your friend. Talk to him about your work, about your papers, your concerns.’ So I did. I’ll never forget what she told me. Now when I tell people that my friend lives with me they ask me, ‘who?’ and I say, ‘Jesus’. Their jaws drop and they don’t know what to say. We don’t know what Jesus looks like but if he were standing in that doorway I would know who He is.”

Wilma’s loneliness with contentment makes sense now, doesn’t it? She’s found the “friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24), the consonant that produces harmony in dissonant lives.

Is your life characterized by dissonance, loneliness, fear, stress or discouragement? I want you to know that what Jesus did for Wilma he can do for you. After all, that’s why He came. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor, to heal the broken hearted, to comfort all that mourn, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for a spirit of heaviness.” (Isaiah 61:1-3).

Loren Hardin is a social worker with Southern Ohio Medical Center – Hospice and can be reached by email at hardinl@somc.org or by phone at 740-356-2525.

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Loren Hardin

Straight Paths

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