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An Ace in the Hole

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“On a warm summer’s eve on a train bound for nowhere; I met up with a gambler…he began to speak…’Son I’ve made a life out of readin’ people’s faces; knowin’ what the cards were by the way they held their eyes. So if you don’t mind my sayin’ I can see you’re out of aces. For a taste of your whisky I’ll give you some advice…If you’re gonna play the game, boy you gotta learn to play it right…Every gambler knows that the secret to survivin’ is knowin’ what to throw away and knowin’ what to keep…You got to know when to hold’em and know when to fold’em, know when to walk away, know when to run…And in his final words I found an ace that I could keep.” (The Gambler; by Kenny Rogers)

All journeys start with the first step

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This is part two of a series about Cora, who enrolled in hospice services with end-stage pulmonary disease. Cora stated, “I enjoy watching HGTV. I’m kind of burned out on “Fixer Upper”, so now I watch, “The Property Brothers”, and “Love it or List it”. And I love watching the barges go up and down the river.” Cora lives adjacent to her daughter, Tammy, her primary caregiver. Cora’s living room window faces the Ohio River and her front porch is only a few feet away from the downward slope of the riverbank.

OPINION: Who Are You Going To Call?

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There are times when trouble comes our way. It might be bills coming due or friends in a frenzy. I know one thing if you need a body shop when you have an accident, there is only one guy I trust. His name is Steve Matheny and he can take care of a dent faster than you can spell, “I got trouble”. He does it all and my friends there is no one friendlier than Steve. He will take care of all the dents in your vehicle in a whizz! Now when I say, “He can do it all”, I am not speaking of the “dents” in your spiritual life. One thing that Steve knows that is true in the physical as well as it is in the spiritual is that far too many people try to fix their own problems instead of leaving it to the one who can truly handle the situation.

“A broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart”

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This is part one of a series about Cora who was admitted to hospice with end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. On second thought, this story isn’t about Cora; it’s about someone who has been a tremendous inspiration and encouragement to Cora.

“Cultivating the devotion of hearing”

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Russell was admitted to hospice with melanoma, “skin cancer”. It’s been years since Russell passed; therefore many of the details about him and about our conversations have faded. But I vividly remember Russell asking me if I wanted to see the extent of his cancer; and Russell pulling back the sheet that covered his body. His entire body was spattered with lesions. That’s not an image that easily fades. I also remember his modest cottage being on the left as I drove around the curve of the country road. I remember the road being lined with trees and thinking how peaceful, picturesque and inviting it was.

OPINION: Focus

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How are you doing? Does it seem as if trouble and tribulation is on every side closing in on you? That is okay, because it has happened to all of us. No one is exempt from those times of trials. In fact, it is called life on planet earth! But when it happens God doesn’t want us to throw our hands in the air and surrender. Instead, He wants to restore us and to give us victory over the things we are facing!

OPINION: Scioto County Democratic Party adopts resolution in opposition to Issue One

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Portsmouth, Ohio — 111 years ago the state of Ohio included citizen initiated constitutional amendments to our State Constitution, ensuring that “we, the people,” can change our state’s fundamental law. We have used it judiciously. The requirements to place an amendment on the ballot have been substantial but not insurmountable. But, Issue One will change that.

Finding a different kind of hope

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This is part two of a series about Michael who was sixty years old when he enrolled in hospice services with end stage cirrhosis of the liver. In part one, we learned about how “…dying puts things in perspective” and about the importance of telling others how we feel, “In the Living Years”, before it’s too late.

“In the living years”

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This is part one of a series about Michael who was sixty years old when he enrolled in hospice services with end stage cirrhosis of the liver. Michael was an electrician, a member of the “International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers”. He is one of seven children and stated “I’m two minutes older than my twin sister, Michelle, but she’s the one who taught me to always say ‘thank you’ and ‘you’re welcome’.”

OPINION: Called By God

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Judges 6:11 says, “Now the angel of the Lord came and… Gideon was beating out wheat in the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites.” It was really unreal that the angel of the Lord came to Gideon. Why do I say that? It was because Gideon was the least man in the least tribe. You couldn’t sink any lower than Gideon! Gideon was about as weak a person as they come. He was so weak that when the angel said, “The Lord is with you, O mighty man of valor,” he proceeded to tell the angel that he had the wrong guy!

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