David Kierzek Theresa C Davis Edward F Storer Ralph Rader DP&L to stick with planned closings Preventing tax season identity theft 4-H awards 11 local scholarships Peebles Elementary holds Spirit Week Humane Society to hold Radio Auction Local business partners find historical treasure in old bank building DP&L employees meet with union leadership GE-Peebles Test Operation joins the campaign about Distracted Driving North Adams Elementary recognizes February Students of the Month Senior Profile: Sydney Michael Stars will shine for the 34th annual C-103 All-Star Game NAHS Track/XC host Shamrock Shuffle 5K Associated Press names All-Southeast District Teams Senior Profile: Hannah Howard Nice to finally be a small part of March Madness The tractor has always been special Jimmy Nelson Kathryn Boldman James E Downs Manchester grad enjoys a “Super” Experience Taking Adams County patriotism to the state capitol John P Sininger Jo Ann Hayslip Harvey U Schrock Eunice G. Burgess Senior Profile: Kaulen St Michael Cox Racing returns to Brushcreek on April 2 Southern Hills Athletic Conference holds Winter Sports Awards ceremony County provides multiple walking venues Adams County parks are tobacco-free Rhoads Memorial 5K Run/Walk is April 9 Peebles Elem. Staff of the Month Floyd E Maddy Raymond A Holt Derrick Poe Spencer E McFarland Mintie F Rogers Roberta Eylar Big Time Wrestling coming to NAHS Carl Tomlin CTC students help with storm clean-up Opening the door for high-tech jobs Jack R Slyger Thomas Stratton Jr Eastern Lady Warriors headed to Final Four Senior Profile: Logan Rogers Southern Hills Athletic Conference names 2016-17 All-Conference Basketball Teams Winchester PD continues assault on drugs Alonso joins Defender staff Sheriff to set up outpost in Manchester Johnson named OEDA Membership Chairperson Sherman E Young Ruth Jackman ‘Kitten Season’ comes to Ohio Manchester Council votes to disband PD Olde Wayside Inn under new management Two overdose on heroin Senior Profile: Ethan Parrett Adams/Brown Youth League holds postseason tourney Three nights of pain Furious rally falls short, Lady Devils again eliminated in Div. III district finals, 45-42 Oscar Moore Barbara J Finnegan Ohio Senate and House honor Miss Ohio USA Michael Eldridge Frances Towner Thelma R Williamson BREAKING NEWS: Manchester council votes to eliminate police department Before all dogs go to heaven Adaptive Bikes delivered in Adams County Adams County Junior Fair Market Hog Identification plans announced for 2017 Local couple takes ownership of two local businesses Jo Hanson to retire after nearly 50 years in banking Sierra Club, hero or villain? Greyhounds, Devils are runners-up in SHAC Tournaments Harold L Purdin Senior Profile: Jacob Wickerham 98-year old author publishes first book Early March storm packs destructive punch Jeeps rally in second half to end the Peebles season How about some post season awards? Thanks for all the great sports coverage PHS Principal hopes to expand students’ world view When spring becomes a promise Greg Lorenz Clay shoots the lights out, shoots down Greyhounds’ season Senior Profile: Savannah McFarland Devils put up a good fight, but fall to Portsmouth in sectional final, 50-43 Second half comeback sends Lady Devils to district finals for third straight year Butts honored by Southeast District Athletic Board North Adams Elementary holds Random Acts of Kindness Week Chester W Eyre BREAKING NEWS: March makes its entrance with force WUES kicks off Right to Read Week with guest readers WUHS students see Aronoff show on the life of Edgar Allan Poe Local high school seniors winners of Wendy’s Heisman Awards

You have to understand the life of a thing

Thurman was a soft-spoken, gentle 70-year old man referred to Hospice for prostate cancer. He was occupationally disabled from a stroke at age 38, but he remained fairly active and independent until his cancer forced him to his bed. He and his wife, Lillian, lived in Ohio, but they regretted moving from Kentucky because their friends and hearts were still there.

Thurman loved flowers, especially tulips. His hospital bed was strategically situated in front of their living room picture window so he could see his large circular flower garden in the center of the front yard. One day Thurman pointed out a rare flowering vine growing up their front porch post. He loved its beautiful flowers. He told me that it was a start from the vine of a friend in Kentucky and that its origin had been traced back to Civil War times. It was the first plant I heard about with its own genealogy.

Thurman recounted, “When I first got it, it wouldn’t grow. Well, it grew but as soon as the flowers blossomed they turned dark and fell off. I figured it needed more water so I watered it every day but the flowers still fell off. Lillian told me to just throw it away, but I decided to learn all I could about it. So I called my friend and he told me that I was doing the opposite of what it needed. I was over watering it. When I cut back on the water the flowers blossomed, stayed on, and it was beautiful. I told Lillian, see what you wanted to throw away.”

Thurman reflected, looked me in the eyes and concluded, “You know, you have to understand the life of a thing.”

Flowers come in many varieties and colors. Some need direct sunlight while others require shade. Some thrive in dry conditions and some need much water. Some like heat while others require cool weather. People, like flowers, don’t thrive under the same conditions either. You have to understand, accept, and cooperate with the life of a thing in order to help it grow into what God has designed it to be. A quote from the book, “Parents Effectiveness Training” captures this truth: (I’m paraphrasing) “Acceptance is the fertile soil that enables a seed to grow into the beautiful flower it was designed to be. The power is not in the soil but in the seed. The soil only releases the life within.”

Understanding is the foundation of true acceptance and we can’t help someone become what they can be until we accept them just the way they are. So let’s determine to be spouses, parents, teachers, and people of understanding; for the hearts, souls and minds of people are holy ground.

“A plan in the heart of man is like deep water, but a man of understanding draws it out.” (Proverbs 20:5)

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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Straight Paths

Loren Hardin

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