Category Archives: RICHARD.VINCENT.ROSE. WRITES

True Reflections-Part Two: Jesus Revealed

In Part One, we discussed the true identity of Jesus:
He was the physical representation/manifestation of God.
How that, if God could cast a reflection in a mirror, what you would see is Jesus.

Hebrews 1:3 describes Jesus as not only being “the brightness of his (God’s) glory,” but follows this with the explanation that Jesus is also “the express image of his (God’s) person.”
The “express image” here means “an imprint,” such as a die cast, perfectly representing the original design.
The word “person,” as in Jesus being the exact image of his person, means “nature.” Therefore, Jesus perfectly represented the exact “nature” of God through His physical manifestation.

When I think of the “brightness of God’s glory,” I always think of the sun. The brightness of the sun, with its beams shining out from the center, providing light to everything which surrounds it. I write often of how we as Christians are supposed to be a “light” in and to a dark world, and the darker the world … the more our light shines… the more our light will be seen. I think now that the darker the surroundings … the farther the light reaches.

In this verse from Hebrews, we get the idea of Jesus shining forth brilliantly, in the full radiance of God’s glory, radiating the essential nature of God. Just as the rays of the sun could not exist apart from the sun … the sun would not exist without its rays … so, too, God and Jesus do not exist apart from the other … meaning that God the Father and God the Son are essentially one.

This is why, in the verse just before (Hebrews 1:2), the writer explains that God had appointed Jesus “heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds.” This relationship between God the Father and God the Son explains how Jesus could, while being the Son of God, could also be called “the Creator.” Verse 3 also plainly states that Jesus, as Creator, “upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.”

Paul would give almost exactly the same explanation in Colossians 1:14-19, which is such a great description of Jesus and His work: “In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins. Who is the image of the invisible God (How about that?) … For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible … all things were created by him, and for him. And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.”

Did you notice that Paul echoes the same fact that Jesus (from Hebrews 1:3) “upholds all things,” by saying here in Colossians 1:17, that “by him (in him) all things consist,” meaning that by Jesus, through Jesus, in Jesus, all things are held together, all things he made as Creator, he now preserves, He now keeps. The world will stop when He tells it to stop.

By the way, the next verse, Colossians 1:18, also states that Jesus “is the head of the body, the church.”

How does God feel about all this?
Next verse: “For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell” (Colossians 1:19).
Philippians 2:9-11: “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name. That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow … And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

We started with the verse in Hebrews, speaking of Jesus being “the brightness of God’s glory.”
Everything Jesus is, revolves around Him being this brightness, this “express image” of God’s glory.

The remarkable thing still is, that Jesus made the decision to come to earth, to take the form of a man, to become sin in our place … and die in our place. For us.

We close with these verses from earlier in the chapter we quoted above, from Philippians:
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made (meaning “coming in”) in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:5-8).

While, yet again, I began this writing with a totally different idea (to go with the “Part Two” title), God changed it during the first sentence. I’m glad He did. These verses mean so much to me. Jesus means so much to me. His Word means so much to me. The even more remarkable thing is … How much we mean to Him … We mean enough to Him, He loves us enough, to do what He did, and to keep doing what He does.

All for us.
What a Savior!

Blessings,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.

Modern-Day PsalmsOur Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page

Modern-Day Psalms: “Early” Reviews

We have been so blessed by the positive response we’ve received from our new book, Modern-Day Psalms: Praise Songs and Love Messages. It is amazing to hear how the words have deeply affected the readers, which is exactly God’s intention for the book. I have been honored to have heard from many people who have, very early in the reading of the book, contacted me to share how the book has touched them. I wanted to share a couple of examples:

Over the weekend, and please understand the sentiment, I received a telephone call from a beloved relative who had started reading the book, and, as soon as Carol handed me the phone, her first words were, “How in the #@*# did you write all this?” At the first sentence, I was expecting to be chastised … severely … but, what she meant was that the book had already touched her, reached her in a way that words can’t explain. My explanation is always the same … as I explain in the book … that God was the writer … I only held the pen. God still has the ability to speak through words, and touch us in a way which “words” can’t.

Last week, I heard from a newspaper reporter/writer, who had received a copy of the book, and was contacting me to set up for an interview. She had read only the first chapter (poem), and she was brought to tears. I can honestly say that, and God deserves all of the praise, that I do hear that a lot. And, not tears in a bad way. Just today, I heard from another reader, who, asked me if she could send this same, first poem, to a friend of hers … to minister to her … as this friend of hers was struggling through the same issue which the poem was meant to address, and minister to. She said that the poem was like it was written just for her. She told me that her friend had been going through anguish and pain over a particular situation for many, many years. This reader was going to type the words of the poem, and then send them to her friend. She wanted to check with me first, to make sure that was ok with me. I will be emailing her a copy of the poem, to send to her friend. I will send my prayers along with it.

Also today, and I mean this in a good way, I heard from another reader who told me that she had to, in trying to read some of the poems, stop, and close the book … then open the book back up, and try to read something else. Then, she would have to stop, go to another page, as she couldn’t finish that one, either. Apparently, the words had touched her heart so deeply, had stirred up emotions which, at the moment, were so intense, perhaps so painful, she couldn’t deal with. At least, not now. I pray this reader will open the book back up, and allow the words to do what they were written for. To comfort, console, and encourage her. To hear from someone who has “been there,” and God brought out. Brought out for the purpose of “going back in” and helping others “out.” This particular reader was looking for something special she could share with someone who was special to her. Keep in mind that a part of the “Love Messages” in the book make it clear that it’s ok to love Jesus … to love your wife/spouse … and, to love your family. And, it’s ok to show them. So, even though many of the “Love Songs” are metaphoric in nature (symbolizing Christ’s love for us and vice-versa), they are still written in a style which can be shared with others. So, I am sending her a copy of just that one Love Poem for her to share.

One of the unique aspects of the book is that I provide an introduction to each one of the works. It explains how or why (or both) that particular poem was written. The story behind it. My intention was that these short introductions would bless and minister to people, as well as the work itself. Again, part of the “messages” within the book. The publishing world thinks that it is a bad idea to introduce a poem. I don’t think it’s a bad idea, and I’m just following the instructions I received about how to lay the book out.

Anyway, I am so blessed by the response to these introductions. So far, everyone who has said anything about the book, always mentions the introductions, and what they have received from them. So, God was right again!

As we go along, we’ll share more about the book. My intention at the beginning was to only mention that we are now offering the book on Pastor Appreciation Gifts, both personalized and signed … just to make that announcement, as we’ve had questions about when that would happen. But, I think the most important thing about the book will always be how the book ministers to, how it affects, how it touches the deepest human emotions … that these are truly living words, meant to do exactly what they are doing.

I praise God for that, for allowing me to hold the pen, and be a part of something so special …

Below, I am placing a link to the “Modern-Day Psalms” Book page over at Pastor Appreciation Gifts. Please note that the book, both hard cover and paperback, is being offered at as close to the online retailers’ price as possible. But, Pastor Appreciation Gifts is the only place where the book is being offered both personalized and signed.
On the page are links to take you to more information about the book (I will be including part of this blog post as well), including a “Table of Contents” listing for you, and other information pertaining to the book.

You can also order (from the Publisher) the book in eBook format, available in whichever format you have). There is a link on the book page for the eBook, as well.

Thank you again for your kind words and thoughts.
Blessings to you, and your family,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.
Our Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page

Link to Pastor Appreciation Gifts: Modern-Day Psalms Book Page

Richard. Vincent. Rose. Recites “The Gettysburg Address”

In support of Ken Burns latest film project, “The Address,” we present Richard. Vincent. Rose. reciting “The Gettysburg Address.”
The national effort was launched by filmmaker Ken Burns, NHPTV, and PBS.
For more information on the project, here’s a direct link to the
“Address” page on New Hampshire Public Television:
http://www.nhptv.org/address/


Our Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page

I Know Jesus Saves … But, Does He Plow? (Part 2)

Miracles all around us. They are happening all the time, and for different reasons. Sometimes for us … sometimes for them … most always for “both” … always the same Source. We’ve all been a part of, and seen, miracles in our lives. Psalms 46:1 says that, yes, “God is our refuge and strength,” but He is also “a very present help in trouble.”

The next verse explains a lot: “Therefore (because of this) we will not fear” (46:2a). Because of this … God’s having helped us in the past … God having proved that He is there with us in every situation … because of His faithfulness to His Word … Because of Who He is and What He is … because of what He’s done for me in the past … because of this … I will not fear now. Because of this … it must mean … it has to mean … it just has to mean … that He is here, with me now … Because of this … I will call on Him … because I know He is there … because He has always been there … He must be … He has to be … here now … He always has been, so He must be here now … after all, He is “a very present help.”

Let’s go back a couple of weeks up here in Northern New Hampshire. To what I hope (as things begin to melt here today) was our last major snow storm of the season. I apologize if I don’t remember the exact day, but they have all looked a lot alike for many months now. I know this was a week or so before Spring, because I remember writing “Tis the Day Before Spring” a week or so after the storm.

I can’t understand how, when I hear the “old timers” talk, how they used to get something like four feet of snow a day … when, a couple of years ago, it was the “snowiest year” on record … and, the most we ever got was 2 feet … I do, however, “get it” when they say this is the coldest on-going Winter they can remember … This winter has been so long, that, as noted above, I’ve lost my memory as to just when “all this” started. I do know that, every year that we’ve been here, we’ve had robins in our yard before Spring … this year, it’ll be April in a couple of days, and no robins yet. So, somewhere in the middle of March, we got a big snowstorm. How big? How bad? Well, the forecast called for somewhere between 12-24 inches. The Winter just hadn’t stopped, and I couldn’t remember the “January thaw” we usually get. I still don’t remember if we got the “thaw” or not … the snow and cold has just all blended together this year, so I don’t think we got one. Maybe for a few hours … maybe … but I must have been at work … So this new storm, on the horizon, was looming …

I am reminded of a heavyweight boxing match, when the challenger has taken so many tough, hard punches, that it won’t take much to “knock him out.” I guess this was the way we were (hey-that sounds like a song!) when this storm came. We had fought so many tough rounds already … it may take less than a “championship” punch to knock us out, here in the final rounds of the fight.

I think it was on a Wednesday when the new snow began to fall. Just the beginning of what was forecast to be a “significant snow event,” with the snow continuing through the evening, overnight, and tomorrow. How bad? It was just before 1:30 that afternoon when the announcement came over the loudspeaker: “School has been cancelled for tomorrow.” Really? This had never happened before … As giddy as I was over the announcement, it also confirmed that this must be a serious storm. Even “old-timers” at the school (sorry for the designation, I mean well) said that they could not remember, ever, a time when School was cancelled THE DAY BEFORE!!! We’ve written often of how much snow we’ve gotten this year, but, we had not had a “snow day” yet this year. Last year, we had one snow day. And, one snow day the year before. Etc.

Anyway, the snow began to fall in earnest. By nightfall, several inches were on the ground … and, on the roads. For those of you who know, it’s not an issue, regardless of how much snow falls, as long as the roads are plowed. Well … this time … because of the length of the “snow event,” and especially since school had been cancelled already, there wasn’t as much an urgency to get the roads plowed. Plus, in such an event, the main roads keep all the resources tied up. Let’s just say I live on a “side road.” Still in the city limits, but off of the last red light, out of town. So, we are among the last to get plowed. I’m not complaining by any means; that’s just the way it is. So, we are on a side road, only a couple of houses, and our road is one long, continuous hill. Our driveway is also one continuous hill. What makes this so difficult in snow is because, when you turn into our road (from the “main road” below), it is at a 90-degree angle, which means that you lose any momentum you may have gained, as you start up “our hill.” Then, when you turn into our driveway, it is another 90-degree angle, so you lose any momentum you may have gained. In a nutshell, if our street hasn’t been plowed, and the snow is heavy, you just don’t stand a chance to make it … until the city has come, and plowed the street. You just can’t gain enough speed in deep snow to make it up the hill, and then, into our driveway.

There have been times, in years past, when we have parked one of our vehicles in the hospital parking lot, about a ½ mile away, because only one of our vehicles could make it up our street.  Let’s say that someone comes home at 5:00 PM, but our street hasn’t been plowed. You just can’t wait until 9:00 PM or later (city is on 4 Hour cycles) to drive home. So, that’s what we’ve had to do. This was before we had gotten 4-wheel drive vehicles.

On this night, in mid-March, I had taken Carol to work, in order to leave the truck in our garage during the storm. The snow kept falling. And, falling. And, accumulating on both the driveway and the roads. It was late, very late, and it was time to pick Carol up from work. They had not plowed our street, nor had they plowed the main road below. Since we are on a hill, it is never an issue of “getting out;” we just roll down the driveway, and then roll down the street to the main road.

On this night, they had only plowed the main highway, at that last red light. I always say, after years of driving in the snow, that you can go anywhere at 15 miles-per-hour. Tonight, I went 10. I was concerned that, even with a heavily weighted truck-bed (I have 5, five-gallon buckets of sand up against the cab, 3 heavy pallets in the middle, and 8 concrete blocks on the rear), I wouldn’t be able to make it back up the hill to our driveway. As I traversed the streets leading up to where I would pick up Carol, it was plain that the city plows hadn’t been out. I was barely able to just get into the parking lot. In fact, even in 4-wheel drive and with all that weight, I would have to repeatedly back up in order to get out into the street, after she got into the truck. And, she was in a “more major” street, certainly, than we lived on. I had to wait. And, wait. She couldn’t leave until her replacement arrived. He was always on time, but this night, he was late. Unusual. This wasn’t like him at all, even though I gave no thought to what he must have had to drive through, to get to work. He finally arrived.

As Carol climbed into the truck, she was praying … praying that Jesus would help us get home … Oh, Boy … then, we had to keep trying, just to get out into the street … a driveway, and street, which were on level ground … she kept praying for us to get home safely … My eyes were on the road, but my ears were on her … praying … knowing that we had one big hill to climb … and, it was evident from her prayers, that we weren’t going to make it without help … She was right, even though she had not seen the hill I’d slid down earlier … but, I knew the same thing … we weren’t going to make it without help … We crossed the intersection at the red-light, and then cautiously worked our way through the snow. Those who have to drive in these conditions know what I mean by “worked.” Carol kept praying; I kept working. We make it through the main road, leading to our street. We had the sharp, 90-degree turn into our street, where we lost any momentum we may have had.

Then, it happened:
It was only later that I realized the significance of what lay ahead of us … I was too busy praying, and gripping the wheel … We were at the bottom of the hill; the truck’s headlights allowing us to see far ahead, up the hill in front of us. There … in the middle of the street … leading to our driveway … was a path … exactly in the center of the road … all the way up the hill … a perfectly plowed path … and, when I say perfectly plowed, it was perfect … dead-center in the middle of the road … it was plowed … not a big, wide swath, which would have been made by a city plow … but, it was narrower, much narrower … just enough for a truck … like ours … to perfectly get through … “Someone” had plowed our street … just our street … the main road (from the red-light) leading to our street was not plowed … if someone had plowed our street and turned around at the bottom of the hill, there was no evidence that this had been done … it was, as if, “Someone,” had just “dropped down,” plowed our street up to our driveway, and disappeared … I thought of the “delay” in Carol getting off work … How the fact that she was late, gave “Someone” time to “work behind the scenes,” which we addressed in Part 1 of this story …

This, now, explains the title of this story.
“Jesus at the Plow?” Aren’t we His hands and feet on this earth?

Recently, I received a beautiful, unforgettable birthday card from my niece, and her family. She wrote “Proverbs 3:5-6” as part of her personalization of the card. Yes, I love these verses: In fact, we have these same verses, with artwork from our dear friend Candy, hanging on the wall of our office. Proverbs 3:6 says, “In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”The word “direct,” used here in “direct thy paths,” can also be interpreted as “make smooth or straight.”

Even now, I still see that path, plowed perfectly for us … so smooth, and so straight.

By the way … something else my niece wrote, in the card which arrived just before this storm: “Sorry the card is late.” No … I’d say the card arrived just on time … for, “such a time as this.”

Blessings,R.V.R.

Modern-Day Psalms at Books A MillionOur Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page

I Know Jesus Saves … But, Does He Plow? (Part 1)

Like all of us, I have witnessed many miracles, and been involved in many of them. If you just look around, really, we are all, every day, surrounded by miracles. My Pastor used to say that, if you don’t think you have anything to be thankful for … just take a breath …

I have been helped so many times, in a miraculous way, my entire life. God’s mercy has protected me, helped me, and, as GA Bulldog announcer Larry Munson would say, “saved my whatchamacallit.” I looked that word up, and it’s in dictionaries.

As we wrote before, if it is important to you, it’s important to God. If it matters to you, it matters to Him. And, nothing is more important to Him than your relationship with Him. Period. I am constantly talking with God, and, yes, most of the time, I do more talking than listening. But, I know His voice … and He knows mine. Psalm 30:10 says, “Hear, O LORD, and have mercy upon me: LORD, be thou my helper.” He is always there when I call. Even when I don’t call, He is still very much there. And, when He answers my call, I should never forget it … and, should tell others of His faithfulness, at every opportunity. In trouble or not, it is a great thing to be able to call out to Him, and have Him hear. And, it is so important for us to not forget His faithfulness … what He’s done for us in the past … to give us hope for every situation we face in the future. Lamentations 3:21 says, “This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope.”

Sometimes we have to wait … He is working behind the scenes, doing things, making things happen for us … and, we’re not even aware-until later-that He was working the whole time.
Back to Lamentations: “The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD” (3:25-26). Fact is, God is always working “behind the scenes” for us … and, waiting, patiently, to do more. Waiting for our call. Once, years ago in Connecticut, I was backing out of the driveway, something I had done hundreds of times. It was after a big snowstorm, but the driveway was downhill, and I could make it down, in reverse, with my eyes closed. On this morning, I was backing out, straight out of the driveway, and it felt like something grabbed my van, and moved it … slid it through the snow … into the ditch on the right-hand side of the driveway … It felt like it was shoved off the driveway. (Never mind what I said!!!) So, I had to call work (1 ½ hours away), and let them know I’d be late. I had to call a wrecker to get me back up into the driveway. God revealed something to me that I had never considered:
I wonder what it was … what danger would have been ahead … had I left for work on time, and not slid off the driveway? What was out there, waiting for me … within that 3 hour span …? It was then, at that moment, I realized something I’ve never forgotten. How many things … how much trouble … how much pain and suffering … how many circumstances does God keep us out of … away from … that we don’t even know about? What was revealed to me that morning was this:
More times than I could ever imagine. We would be amazed at the things we can’t see … we’d be stunned to learn of all the times that what we considered to be “inconvenient” to us, was just a ploy to “buy time” to allow other things to happen … to protect us, and, even save our lives. We’ve all heard stories of people who over-slept, had unexplained car trouble, missed a bus or train … and, because of that … they were spared or saved from disaster. So, that’s what I’m talking about.

I think back to so many times when “someone just showed up” to help me. I know that you can think of all those times too, that something like that has happened to you. What amazes me, is that when I look back over the years … even when I wasn’t living for God … God still protected me … kept me safe … knowing that, one day … “for such a time as this …”
I can feel those words touching you, as well. God is so good, so loving, and so merciful … we never deserve it … but think about all of those times when, “humanly speaking,” we really didn’t deserve it. He protected us … kept us from certain disaster … knowing that, “one day …”

I am reminded of Psalm 63:7: “Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.”

I can’t stress enough how important this message about God keeping His hand on us, even though we aren’t serving Him, is. Protecting us, keeping us from harm, having His hand on us … even though we had no idea at the time. I think of Paul, when he was Saul … in spite of that he was doing … think about it … God protected him, kept him from those who would have done him much harm … knowing, that one day …

Just a short story to close: I remember a time, yes, in “the bad old days,” I was with a couple of friends. We weren’t criminals or breaking many laws, but we weren’t driving around handing out Gospel tracts, either. Let’s just say we were making a speedy exit from a residence we had spent the last few hours visiting. I was driving, and, somehow, I managed to run off the road into a ditch. It was imperative for us to leave the area quickly, but, there we were, in a ditch. From out of nowhere, a truck passed us, stopped just ahead of our vehicle, and then backed up to just in front of our car. We thought we were done for. I know we all thought, “This is it!” A big, big guy got out of the truck in overalls. He looked like he could just lift the car up by himself. He walked up, and this is all he said: “Let’s get you outta there.” He reached in back of the truck, grabbed a chain, and hooked up to the car. He then got in the truck, I got in the car, and he pulled me out. He then stopped, unhooked the chain, and drove off. He didn’t say a word. It was like he was “just sent,” just sent “for such a time as this.” We looked at each other, then up the road … and he was gone. Just disappeared into the landscape.

 I’ve heard and read many of these types of stories, and many of you have them too. This is one of mine. I haven’t thought about that in years. God has to remind me all the time, when I am being judgmental (etc.) over someone’s activities or lifestyle … that I should have compassion … for me to think about Paul … and to think about me … how I was …

I am so glad He hasn’t changed … He always was there, and always Is there.

Blessings,
R.V.R.
Our Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page

 

In Pictures And Words: ‘Tis The Day Before Spring

Well, here we are … both the snow and temperatures falling on this night before Spring 2014.
16 pictures are worth a lot of words, so here goes:

I went outside last evening and took the pictures you see here. Don’t worry: Not a lot has melted since. While this isn’t such a “big deal” to us here in the Great North Woods … there are people who still find it hard to believe … I tell them about the snow up to the garage roof … the amount of snow still on the ground … the temperatures … etc. … We talk to people who have never seen a pellet stove, so we put in a picture for them. So, for our friends all over, here’s a look at how it is here … the day before Spring. Don’t worry: We are under a Winter Weather Advisory, with a 100% chance of snow … As I look at the days ahead … I see below zero, snow showers … the usual …
We talked to friends in Rhode Island last night (only some 250 miles south), and they had no snow on the ground …
I went back in, and after a warm-up by the stove, I went to the office and wrote “Tis The Day Before Spring.” Except for Carol, last night, you will be the first ones to see the words in print.

So, enjoy the Pictures … and the Words … as, it is, yes, it ‘Tis The Day Before Spring …

It is up to the garage roof!

It is up to the garage roof!

The path, passing the garage, leading up to the shed.

The path, passing the garage, leading up to the shed.

I can't believe it!

I can’t believe it!

I still can't believe it!

I still can’t believe it!

Let's go to the clothesline!

Let’s go to the clothesline!

I think we're gonna need the dryer for a little longer!

I think we’re gonna need the dryer for a little longer!

Here's a look at the top stairs, coming up to the porch. We don't get many visitors.

Here’s a look at the top stairs, coming up to the porch. We don’t get many visitors.

Here's the bottom two sets of stairs. No one coming to see us today!

Here’s the bottom two sets of stairs. No one coming to see us today!

Here's a look at the icicles under the porch. Note wind chimes on left.

Here’s a look at the icicles under the porch. Note wind chimes on left.

The view from under the porch. I can't believe it, either! We're gonna need a taller porch.

The view from under the porch. I can’t believe it, either! We’re gonna need a taller porch.

A look at the layers of snow off of the driveway. This our guest parking area. No one coming today.

A look at the layers of snow off of the driveway. This is our guest parking area. No one coming today.

I couldn't find anything else to give you an idea of the depth of the snow.

I couldn’t find anything else to give you an idea of the depth of the snow.

This is the path beside the garage. Made it myself!

This is the path beside the garage. Made it myself!

Never thought a boot could be so interesting. Got these at Wal-mart!

Never thought a boot could be so interesting. Got these at Wal-mart!

Always final destination: Here's the pellet stove. Heats the whole house.

Always final destination:
Here’s the pellet stove. Heats the whole house.

‘Tis The Day Before Spring
Richard. Vincent. Rose.

‘Tis the day before Spring
And I have yet to hear a robin sing
Or even seen my red-breasted friend
I keep hoping, as April nears, both are just ‘round the bend

Great! The calendar foretells of Spring’s arrival
But not before another Winter revival
3 to 5 inches may fall tonight
Tomorrow is Spring … at least tomorrow is in sight

Old Man Winter got old months ago
Even he grew tired of the snow
I wonder where he would take sanctuary
As we suffer through the third month of January

Wait! Tomorrow will bring a break in the snow!
Even Winter must, for a moment, find somewhere to go
To rest up, and return again soon
For, after all, it’s not yet June

I’ve lost count of the nights in a row
That our thermometer hasn’t risen above zero
So let’s get out our shovels, our plows, and all sing
For today is the day … the day before Spring
Richard. Vincent. Rose.
3/19/14

P.S. I think I’ll go down and sit by the stove, and read a book:

Modern Day PsalmsOur Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page

Words Over Wind: Jesus Saves

Well … here I go again … I sat down to write about a miracle which Carol and I experienced earlier this week, and God gave me this to share first:
By the way, the original title of this post was to be, “I Know Jesus Saves … But, Does He Plow?”
It was about a “Miracle in the Snow,” but God wants me to share this first:

If there’s one thing I’ve learned with my walk with God, it is this:
If it is important to you, it is important to God.
If it matters to you, it matters to God.
That’s why He always wants to be “part of the conversation.”
He always wants to be your first option; not your last.
He wants to be your first choice; not your last.

So often, we turn to God as a “last resort,” only after everything we’ve tried has failed.
Even as Christians, sometimes, it seems like we have this built-in response to situations that ends something like this: “OK, God, I’ve tried everything else, and it hasn’t worked … Will you please help me?”

Please know that, regardless of what you are going through, Jesus is right there with you. Always.
Psalm 46:1 says that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
Yes, our refuge and strength, and, in times of trouble, He is always “present.”

I remember once, a long time ago, I was living in a mobile home, way out in the middle of the woods, and, in the middle of a severe storm, with tornados all around, it felt like the house was going to be lifted off of its foundation. The mobile home was “tied down,” but that wouldn’t keep the walls or roof intact. I went to the center of the house, the bathroom, and prayed. I mean I really prayed. The wind was whipping all around, a constant roar, the walls were shaking, and the rain sounded like bullets hitting the house. I could hear crashing sounds, but the wind was so strong and loud, you couldn’t tell which direction the noise was coming from. I can’t tell you the number of tragedies I’ve witnessed or read about as a result of tornados (or, “tornadoes”- both are considered proper plurals), and, as I sat there in the dark, the world around me shaking, I thought of all those stories and experiences. I prayed. Hard.

(Personal note from present time: Carol and I were married in Ringgold, GA. A couple of years ago, the area was hit with three tornadoes within a few hours span. Most of the downtown area, in the area where we were married … was destroyed … it just didn’t exist anymore … I know what it’s like … that feeling you get … every time a storm approaches … and, I mean every time a storm approaches …)

At that time, I had many, many dogs, and the dog pen was located about 20 feet or so from the house. I was as worried about the dogs as I was about the house. They had shelter and safety, but not from the large trees which surrounded us, and I could not hear anything above the storm. There was just no way to go outside to check on them. Keep in mind, also, that with a severe storm comes lightening. And, lots of it. What about those crashing sounds? At times, the crashing sounds drowned out the wind. Even after the major storm ended, the lightening, wind, and hard rain continued.

I remember that this was a Saturday night, and, as is often the case, the Sunday morning dawned with a clear, bright, sunny sky. First thing, at daylight, I ran outside … sure enough, the crashing sounds I heard were trees … large trees … and limbs … and, they were scattered around the property. First … the dogs … they were fine … no damage at all to their pen or shelter …

However … what struck me, as I surveyed the damage … was how the damage was “all laid out,” especially where the two huge oak trees had fallen … One had fallen along the driveway, but where and how it landed was what was unusual. It had large limbs, and it had fallen just to the left of the electric service line. I was living way back in the woods, and the single line was weaved through the trees to get to the service pole. It had missed, somehow, by inches, the power line. However, the limbs, now on the ground, extended underneath the power line. What this meant was that, “somehow,” as the tree came down … the limbs were “held back” until it passed the power line on the way down. Then, the limbs were, somehow, “released” as they fell to the ground.

There were two trees down … the other tree, and where it fell, was nothing short of a miracle.
I mentioned that there was a distance of some 20 feet between the house and the dog’s shelter.
This large oak, brought down by the storm, fell exactly between the two. I remember drawing a map of where the tree fell, in relation to the house and the dog pen. It landed exactly in the middle. Because of the reach of the limbs, and this being such a huge tree, a couple of inches either way … and either the house, or the dogs, would have been gone. It fell, literally, perfectly, as if placed there … on purpose …

This was Sunday morning, so off to church … it was also a miracle, with the amount of trees falling all around, that the entire driveway was clear … a driveway of some 500 feet or more … not a single limb blocking the way …

It was during praise and worship that God spoke directly to me … let’s face it, most of my mind was on the storm clean-up, and wondering “what might have been.” But, God broke through and gave me this message … clearly … A totally unplanned message I then delivered to the congregation:

“If it’s important to you, it’s important to Me. If it matters to you, it matters to Me.”

Blessings,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.

Our Christian Gift Store
Our YouTube Channel
Our Facebook Page