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August 19, 2016

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Chaplains Corner

Stand firm

Once, I was visiting a patient with a number of medical problems who felt as though they were being punished by God.   One problem got better only to be replaced with another.    During our conversation, I had an opportunity to remind the patient of the life of Job.   Job was an upright individual who found grace in the eyes of God.   So much so that Satan accused God of placing a hedge of protection around him. We can find peace in the story of Job, knowing that he did nothing to warrant the events that more on this story...  


I love using different ways to recall a word’s power. The grace of God is one of those words. I have had the personal joy of experiencing what seems like grace many times in my life. What is grace?  Strongest concordance states it is…“kindness and favor toward someone…” I have experienced grace from others and most profoundly from God. I never want to diminish the meaning of grace nor forget who is most gracious to me, so I remember the power of the word grace by this simple tool. God’s Riches more on this story...  

Birthday and History

I just recently celebrated my daughter’s birthday. She was born July 16, 1959 at 11:05 a. m. at the old Pikeville Methodist Hospital.   It is commonly referred to as “up on the hill. ”  She was looking around so bright eyed as the nurse brought her to show me.   I thought, “What a girl. ” I think now of how she has grown and the growth of the hospital. Camilla today is a speech pathologist for Pikeville Medical Center. She loves her patients, and they love her. Pikeville Methodist Hospital, now known as Pikeville more on this story...  

The Journey

In 1775 Daniel Boone and his axmen developed a path known as a Buffalo Trace that would later be known as the Boone Trace. Much of that path is now a U. S. highway known as the “Wilderness Road”. In March 2015 I peddled my bike along a large portion of Boone Trace, a total of about 164 miles. It was no easy journey, but I had some wonderful experiences along the way. It was a great feeling when I finally saw my destination but the best part of the trip was more on this story...  

My beloved son

Our newborn son had to spend some additional time in the NICU of the hospital while my wife was discharged.   We were saddened by this event but knew it was better for our child and for us.   Looking at him in the NICU, before we left the hospital, we knew that the staff and God was watching over him and us.   Although, we had to leave our child, we knew God would never leave us or forsake us.   After staying an additional day, our baby boy was more on this story...  

Stress Less

My grandmother used to call me a “worry wart. ” Anyone else? It is reported that over 75 percent of society experiences physical symptoms caused by stress. We all have stress at times. Stress is natural, and can even be positive. But our reactions to a stressful situation can actually increase our stress. We often imagine the worst possibilities which likely never happen. If we pause to observe our reactions to stress, we can reduce it. The next time you feel overwhelmed by stress, stop for a more on this story...  

A Matter of Focus

During a hospital stay, I grew fond of my grandmother’s roommate. One day while she was napping, I noticed on the stand beside her bed she had propped up a strip of needle point with an odd design on it. Later, when she was awake, I asked her about it. “A friend made that for me. Can you see what it says,” she asked. I shook my head. “What do you mean? It’s some foreign language, isn’t it?” “No,” she replied with a wide grin. “It’s a word you’ve more on this story...  

Voices will soon cease

While there were many attractions at Hillbilly Days this year, one particular attraction was the dunking booth. There was a weird and somewhat annoying voice followed by an obnoxious laugh coming from a small man dressed as a clown. Anyone who got close enough was most likely going to be ridiculed by this character. I watched as many, many people lined up to lay their money down. This clown would continually insult people and some would argue with him and continually pay their money to try to more on this story...  

Super Heroes

There is currently a comic-book craze emphasizing fictitious super heroes battling the forces of evil with their own respective ‘super powers. ’  It seems as though there is a thirst for good conquering evil in the perilous times in which we live.   These are nice fantasies, but what about true heroes who actually fought the genuine forces of evil?    My father, Marvin Thacker, is among the last surviving soldiers of World War II.   He enlisted in the autumn of 1942 at the age of 17 and fought in battles such as Normandy, the Battle of the more on this story...  

Christ is alive He has risen

The good news for Christians today, is that we serve a Risen Lord, the tomb is empty. We learn in the Gospel of St Matthew Chapter 28 that Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were on there was to the tomb to prepare Jesus body for final burial, and they were wondering who would roll the stone away.   Verse two and behold there was a great earthquake and the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it. more on this story...  


Never too late to practice what you preach

With a full dining room, “Preaching Today” tells of an incident at the Dupree House senior living facility in Cincinnati. Patty Ris was eating her hamburger when she began to choke. A resident next to her came to her rescue and performed the Heimlich maneuver. That resident was none other than Dr. Henry Heimlich, then 96 years old. Patty wrote a letter to Dr. Heimlich saying “God put me in the seat next to you. ”  The humble Dr. Heimlich could only reply, ”When I used it and she recovered quickly it made me appreciate how wonderful more on this story...  

Praying for You

I’m praying for you.   Such powerful words and a message we often take for granted.   Visiting a patient recently, I reminded her that we in the Chaplains’ Department pray for her daily.   “I will pray for all of you too,” she said.   “I’m already praying for my doctors, my nurses, and all the rest of the staff who have been taking care of me.   I will include all the chaplains in my prayers as well. ”  I was deeply moved by her words.   A priest once told me he was always telling more on this story...  

A light in the darkness

I took my wife to a trendy restaurant recently but was shocked at how dark it was. The lights were dim and the tables were illuminated by a single romantic candle. I struggled to read the menu but soon my eyes adjusted and I could see well enough to order. I told my wife that it was amazing how quickly that we had adapted to the darkness. It occurred to me that we as a society seem to get acclimated to the darkness more quickly than any previous more on this story...  


The role of the shepherd is important. He watches over the sheep and is responsible for their wellbeing. The Bible refers to the role of a shepherd on several occasions. Jesus himself even made mention of His role as a shepherd. In Psalm 23 David writes of his own childhood experiences of days in the field caring for his sheep. He compares our relationship with God with the little shepherd boy whom the sheep are completely dependent for provision, guidance and protection.   God too cares for us in the same manner. He lives with us, feeds more on this story...  

Fruits of our labor

Many who planted gardens are now enjoying the satisfying taste of new onions, lettuce and peas. The mystery of a seed’s growth has taken place producing the anticipated harvest. Jesus compared the kingdom of God to seeds sown in the soil. The seed is planted and while the gardener labors or rests it sprouts and grows even though he doesn’t know how. The soil produces a crop by itself; first the blade, then the head then the mature grain in the head. (Mark 4:26 – 28. ) Jesus compares more on this story...  

The cross

The small cross on a chain around my neck is very light. In fact, after many years I hardly notice it’s there. How appropriate and fitting to carry such a symbol. It was Jesus who tells us to “deny yourself” and “take up our cross daily” and it is also Jesus who calls us to give him our burdens and he will give us a burden that is “light. ” So, this light little cross around my neck is a reminder of the daily call to take up my more on this story...  

Daily Bread

My wife loves to put bird feeders in our yard.   Recently, I noticed that she was filling them more often.   One morning while watching the birds, I spied a small ground squirrel climbing the pole and then scurrying away with several seeds at a time. This went on for several days with both of us keeping vigil. My wife finally had enough. The thief had to be stopped.   She sprayed the pole with cooking oil and we stood and watched the effort put forth in trying to more on this story...  

Mommy’s Day

I once stood at the bedside of a man who was dying. Drugs and alcohol had ravaged his life. His lifestyle had finally caught up to him, and he was near death.   Sitting beside this man was a woman who was alone and broken.   She saw lying before her, a man who once was her little child for whom she had great expectations.   As I stood there and prayed with her, a thought resonated in my mind.   No matter the circumstance or where our journey takes us, more on this story...  

Become planted with God

Planting time is right around the corner. Over the long winter months you have poured over seed catalogs as you planned your garden or flower beds. Now you’ve made your purchases and wait to plant them in the ground. You know the handful of seeds you plant will yield a return many times greater than what was planted. Seeds packed with potential. Consider for a moment that you are that seed. Locked in you is a person prepared to thrive and bear much fruit. By giving yourself over more on this story...  


Holidays of remembrance, love, and celebration dot the calendar. Valentine’s Day is important because it shows love to someone you love, but my favorite is Easter.   It holds a special place in my life.   Why Easter you may ask? Easter is the fulfillment of biblical prophecy.    We celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the beginning of the Christian faith.   This day is why I call myself a Christian and celebrate who Jesus is and what he did for me on a lonely hill called Calvary. more on this story...  


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