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Jim Dubel DC


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Dr. Jim Dubel

Thanksgiving is probably my favorite time of year. It is a time for the senses. Nature provides the sight of those glorious fall colors. But it’s really all about those Thanksgiving smells. The leaves underfoot on a cool evening stroll and the odor of lingering smoke from a neighbor’s fireplace. Better yet, the house filled with the anticipatory and mouth-watering evidence of the Thanksgiving feast in preparation ~ mulled apple cider, fall vegetables, squash and turnip, roast turkey and stuffing and apple or maybe pumpkin pie. And it’s about being truly thankful that everyone in the family has come through another year and is able to share the day together recognizing in so many ways that we’re far more fortunate than most.

At our Fall New Beginnings I tried to tell the following story, but having lost my voice it was very difficult. I felt since I was barely able to express myself that I would retell the story here on the “34th Principle.” As Chiropractors we need to give thanks for everything God has given us, especially our hands, the tools which enable us to change lives everyday.


An old man, probably some ninety plus years, sat feebly on the park bench. He didn’t move, just sat with his head down staring at his hands. When I sat down beside him, he didn’t acknowledge my presence and the longer I sat I wondered if he was ok.

Finally, not really wanted to disturb him but wanting to check on him at the same time, I asked him if he was ok. He raised his head and looked at me and smiled.

“Yes, I’m fine, thank you for asking,” he said in a clear strong voice.

“I didn’t mean to disturb you, sir, but you were just sitting here staring at your hands and I wanted to make sure you were ok?” I explained to him.

“Have you ever looked at your hands?” he asked. “I mean really looked at your hands.”

I was a little shocked by his question, I mean every Chiropractor has looked at his or her hands many times. But being curious about his question I slowly opened my hands and stared down at them. I turned them over, palms up and then palms down.

He smiled and related this story:

Stop and think for a moment about the hands you have, how they have served you well throughout your years. These hands, though wrinkled, shriveled and weak have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out and grab and embrace life. They braced and caught my fall when as a toddler I crashed upon the floor. They put food in my mouth and clothes on my back. As a child my mother taught me to fold them in prayer. They tied my shoes and pulled on my boots. They dried the tears of my children and caressed the love of my life.

They held my rifle and wiped my tears when I went off to war. They have been dirty, scraped and raw, swollen and bent. They were uneasy and clumsy when I tried to hold my newborn son. Decorated with my wedding band they showed the world that I was married and loved someone special.

They wrote the letters home and trembled and shook when I buried my parents and spouse and walked my daughter down the aisle. Yet, they were strong and sure when I dug my buddy out of a foxhole and lifted a plow off of my best friend’s foot. They have held children, consoled neighbors, and shook in fists of anger when I didn’t understand. They have covered my face, combed my hair, and washed and cleansed the rest of my body.

They have been sticky and wet, bent and broken, dried and raw. And to this day when not much of anything else of me works real well these hands hold me up, lay me down, and again continue to fold in prayer. These hands are the mark of where I’ve been and the ruggedness of my life. But more importantly it will be these hands that God will reach out and take then he leads me home.

I sat for a few minutes thinking about my hands and what they meant to me as a Chiropractor. Why did I sit next to and why did I question this man?

No doubt I will never look at my hands the same again. I never saw the old man again after I left the park that day but I will never forget him and the words he spoke. When my hands are hurt or sore from adjusting or when I stroke the face of my children and wife I think of the man in the park.

As I celebrate Thanksgiving Day this year, I plan on giving special thanks for all Chiropractors who share a love and understanding of Chiropractic and its philosophy and I will give thanks for the Hands God has given me to share Chiropractic with, enabling me to serve my family, my friends, and my patients.

I wish to all a Happy Thanksgiving.

All My Love, Loyalty, and Friendship,

Jim Dubel


 Fred H. Barge DC, PhC - April / June 1998

It seems to me that once I learned
            the message from above

That I began to live my life
            for nothing more than love.

The love of what my heritage
            had put on me to bear

The task to bring it forth you see
            became my daily f are.

I learned to bear contumely
            Twas taken as the toll

Fear not the straight and narrow gate
            it lies before each goal.

Forsake the need for accolades
            move on once goals are done

The challenge is forever there
             in life it’s never won.

Cast out of life the negative
            serenity supreme

For then you come to understand
            that you become your dream.


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