What we are made of When summer really arrived Horse project 4-H members head to Ohio State Fair Defender hosts annual Cornhole Tournament George’s Brave Shave’ benefits other Year of planning, work pays off for 2017 fair Local teen opens new business Why can’t you stop? Camp first step in preparation for 2018 Greyhounds on the gridiron Young awarded SEDAB Scholarship Fair hosts Hall of Fame broadcaster Peebles goes back-to-back at the Barnyard The sport of goats Massive storms rumble through Ohio Valley James W Morgan Tiffany R Edwards Marshall W Groves Fairgoers wanna iguana! SSCC moving forward with plans for Adams County campus Mary Wallingford Leslie V Lawrence Jr Fair hosts Cheerleading Competition Peebles FFA installs 2017-18 Officers Adams County Fair Baby Contest Seniors Citizens and Armed Forces Day at the fair Cheers! It’s mocktail time! North Adams Beta Club attends National Convention at Disney ‘You won’t believe the chaos it rains around you’ McCarty’s receive 4-H Alumni award McKayla Raines crowned 2017 Junior Fair Queen Eastern knocks off Peebles 10-5 to capture 14 U baseball tourney Just listen for the answer Time to teach a little History Fair hosts Little Miss and Mister, Toddler shows Jason E Palmer Dorothy Stephenson Shane G Varney The weekend I joined the Army David Stutz Patty Davis Battle results in new chief at the Division of Wildlife Join in with ‘Adams County Rocks’ After 500-mile journey, pigeon ‘drops’ in for a visit Nine-run third inning leads Peebles to upset win in SHYL 12U baseball tournament finals Willie L White David A Presley Connie Greene Carolyn Belczyk retiring from OSU Extension Young’s reign as Fair Queen ends, new journey begins Robert L Boone Esther C Malone Independence Day parade puts patriotism on display Being an addict’s mom: a sad and scary place to be White House newest addition to People’s Defender mailing list Young leaving Manchester to become Ripley Principal Leadoff homer holds up, Manchester takes 10U softball tourney 1-0 over North Adams North Adams tops Manchester in 12U semis Monday Night League concludes with SHAC showdown How we see ourselves In the good ole’ summertime Ronnie L Roush Elizabeth A Gifford Tom White Ivan H Copas Kathleen Lewis Paul Minton Jessica A Edmisten Workhouse helps free up jail space Penguin ‘chills’ with kids in library visit ‘Heroin has taken me to my darkest places’ The beauty of the giant combine West Union gets past North Adams 5-2 in 10U baseball tourney play Eastern Brown hosts annual Girls Soccer Shootout “It’s been a real community effort” Summer ball winds down for local squads Submit your Knothole team photos! Gokey, Morgan, Young to perform at 2017 Festival of the Bells Just looking around the room When in the course of human events When your dreams seem out of reach Ricky A Smith Ricky A Smith Dean McClellan Ruby O Shell Peggy R Atkinson Caroline E Fulton Marcia R Baldwin Juanita N Lewis Mary K Hilterbran Jack D Reed ‘I had no gumption except to get high’ Long-lost siblings meet for the first time after nearly six decades apart Freedom Festival to honor the American Flag ‘Music and Memory’ at Adams County Manor renews lives lost to dementia Adams County Sheriff’s Deputy takes gold at 2017 Ohio Police and Fire Games Toole awarded Winchester Alumni Scholarship Lady Devils host Summer Varsity Shootout In 14U, Peebles finishes regular season with blowout win Der professionelle Basketball-Traum Local pair attend Wabash College Wrestling Camp

I’ve always heard it said

Altie was in her 70s when admitted to Hospice for bone cancer. She was born and raised in the mountains of eastern Kentucky. She and her husband moved to southern Ohio shortly after getting married. She was “saved” at age 50 and a member of a fundamental Christian church. She reminisced, “My husband was saved 15 years before me but he didn’t push me. It has to be your time. You’ll know when it’s your time. He’ll come to you. “

Altie lived in town with her daughter, Eva, for several weeks following her cancer surgery. But she longed to return to her own home in the country. So we arranged home delivered meals and an emergency response system, and Altie was on her way. Her family continued to support and encourage Altie while respecting her independence. On my first visit to her old home place Altie gave me a tour and proudly declared, “Me and my husband built this house and I drove just as many nails as he did.”

Altie adjusted remarkably well to returning home and living semi-independently, especially when you consider she was right handed but had very limited use of her right arm which was in a sling. When I complimented her on her adjustment, on learning to use her left hand, she replied, “But I think I’ve learned it a little too late. I think the cancer is getting worse. I’m not walking to the mailbox now and I’m not sleeping very well. You can’t help but ask God, ‘Why me? Why did all this have to happen to me?’ But I’ve always heard it said that we aren’t supposed to question God.” I’ve heard that statement so many times as a social worker too, but this time I just couldn’t let it slide by, so I asked myself and Altie, “But who says so?”

When I returned to the office I asked Shirley, one of our volunteers, her thoughts about questioning God. Shirley, being a student of the Bible and involved in the lay ministries of her church, enthusiastically accepted the challenge of researching what the Bible had to say about it. The next day Shirley reported her findings, “I started reading the Bible from the beginning and everywhere I turned someone was questioning or arguing with God.” She handed me her notes handwritten on a yellow legal pad: ‘Moses said to God, ‘Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh. What shall I say to them?’(Exodus 3:11-13); ‘What if they will not believe me?’ (Exodus 4:1); ‘Moses argued with God’ (Exodus 4:10); ‘Abraham questioned the Lord’ (Genesis 18:23). Shirley concluded, “The Bible is full of people asking questions of God. God wants us to turn to him because God understands us. He understands our weaknesses and our questions.”

A couple of years ago I was facing open heart surgery. Believe me, the night before my surgery, I bombarded God with questions. And I kept agonizing, what if? Then my daughter, Elizabeth, returned from the house and said, “Daddy, I thought you might want something to read” and one of the books she brought was a devotional by Oswald Chambers titled, “My Utmost for His Highest.” Later that evening I opened the devotional to the day, Dec. 14, and would you believe it, it was about the anxiety of not knowing what the future holds. I read one simple statement that brought me to tears of worship and praise and that gave that “peace that passes all understanding” ( Philippians 4:6-7). “Because I know that my Father knows, therefore I will stand and watch and see how He unravels this thing.” I no longer needed to know. All I needed to know was that “My Father knows”.

I’m reminded of the lyrics of the song, “Trust His Heart”: “Our Father knows what’s best for us. His ways are not our own. So when your path grows dim and you just can’t see Him. Remember you’re not alone. So when you don’t understand, when you don’t see His plan, when you can’t trace his hand, trust His heart”.

In conclusion, God doesn’t want parrots, sitting on their artificial perches, just dutifully repeating what they’ve been taught to say (paraphrased from A.W. Tozer, “Keys to the Deeper Life”). So let’s keep taking our questions to God, for He invites us to do so. “Come now and let us reason together.” (Isaiah 1:18). And the next time we find ourselves saying, “I’ve always heard it said,” let’s stop and ask, “But who says so?”

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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