Monthly Archives: May 2014

Memorial Day: A Day about US and Not about You or Me

In  the last thirty or so minutes of this day, after having spent the previous two days watching documentaries and docu-dramas about the courage, sacrifice and sheer grit of ordinary citizens who became extraordinary servants of this country, I can’t help but feel small as an individual but great as a part of the US – which is essentially us.

I wasn’t in the military but admire those in it and pivotal characters in Malevolent Tide include present and retired members of our military. In my life, one grandpa served during WWII and the other worked for the railroad during WWII. The US needed him to transport troops and supplies more than they needed him to shoulder a weapon. I think about them this time of year and wonder what they must have thought about and felt before they knew we would win. It’s hard to imagine as I sit on this side of history.

I’ve heard it said many times that we owe our freedom to those in the military. I agree but I think that we owe more than that – I think we owe our very lives. Our enemies don’t care so much about ridding the world of democracy as much as they just want to kill us and bring us to their level. We are a rich country, although not all are rich. Some in the world covet what we have and too often what they see is our arrogance and materialism – just turn on the TV. It is not hard to think little of Americans if you base your opinion according to what fills our airwaves.

God reached out to Nineveh by sending Jonah and for a time they turned from the ungodly way they treated their neighboring countries. But after a time, they returned to exploiting and abusing other countries and God unleashed his judgement on them and they are no more. God judges the eternal human soul after its time on earth but God judges nations during their time on earth. He didn’t destroy Nineveh because they weren’t following him in a theocratic sensse; He destroyed them because of how they abused the neighboring countries around them.

As a nation, US should be mindful of seeking justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly with (or without) our God. I inserted (or without) because there will come a time when Christians will be a minority – yes, we already act like it. Without justice, mercy, and humility, we will follow the path paved by Nineveh.

Paul said it best in Phil. 1:21. “For me, to live is Christ, to die is gain.” That commitment is a weapon more powerful than all the bombs on earth. It took Christianity from being a small odd sect of Hebrews to over 2 billion believers. Paul clearly saw that it was not about Paul but about Christ. Paul was a part of something greater than himself. As part of this country we are part of something bigger than ourselves. Without us there is no military or Federal government and without no military or Federal government there is no us. As sad as politics can be, words kill fewer people and are less damaging than bullets if you have the opportunity to be born (which makes me think of justice and mercy and humility).

All of us are imperfect to say the least, but as a member of US, remember that the taxes we pay, the prayers we pray, the wreaths we lay, and the thank you’s we say mean a great deal to those of us who courageously step into harm’s way. And such things need not only happen or be recognized on Memorial Day.

 

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For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus

Romans 8:38-39 NIV

38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

When you feel the need to find God, don’t delay, don’t scoff, the need is not a weakness or a flaw. The need and urge is the Spirit of a loving father gently knocking on your heart’s door. It’s not about what some “Christian” did to you in the past or the bad things you read about Christians doing. All  Christians are bad in the sense that all have sinned and no one was born a Christian – it always has been and always will be a choice.

Christ lived as a perfect example. Don’t be a Christian to be Christian, be a Christian to be like Christ.

 

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Funny but True Stories of Growing Up in Arkansas – Snakes, Guns, and Shampoo

This is a story I wrote for my two sons.

To Heath and Ben,

I was in the middle of my summer vacation and was around 13 or 14 years old. Your papaw was away for a couple weeks working out of town. So, your Grams and I were holding down the fort, which involved taking care of several animals. We had a big, red and white-spotted appaloosa named Lulu, a bay thoroughbred named Bo, and a black quarter horse named Molly. We also had several dogs. Smoky was a longhaired German shepherd who looked like a wolf. Wheatie was an orange and white cocker with an attitude and Bubba and Sissy were a couple of apple-headed Chihuahuas. We lived in a brick house on seven acres just off highway 287 west in Springhill, Arkansas between Greenbrier and Conway.

Springhill and Greenbrier had a lot of cattle pasture, small rivers, rolling hills and farm ponds. Our seven acres was pasture with the fencerow being the only thing with trees except for the huge oak in our front side yard. I had helped your Papaw build a fence around roadside of the entire seven acres, as our property bordered a dirt road.

We had a gravel drive that circled behind our house and there was no garage. On that day during the middle of my summer vacation, I had been on my usual rounds. I’d wake up sometime before noon, gather my fishing gear and head to a farm pond on someone else’s property. By late afternoon, I had made my way back home and jumped in the shower because I was covered in dirt from sweating in the July heat and riding my four-wheeler with nothing on but cut-offs and tennis shoes. I was just getting my hair all soaped up when I heard Mom yell, “Heath, get the gun – there’s a snake out here.” I jumped out of the shower, grabbed a towel, and ran into Mom and Dad’s bedroom and grabbed the loaded revolver out of the western holster hanging on the corner of their headboard. By this time the towel had fallen off, so I threw the gun on the bed and wrapped the towel around me again and rolled it so it would stay put. With gun in hand I raced outside and said, “Where is it, where is it?” She said, “Over there by the big puddle”.

The big puddle was a garage-sized puddle that was located behind and to the right of our house. We never noticed at the time or thought it odd, but the big puddle had formed after a heavy rain, which is normal. The odd part was that the puddle remained and grew larger even though we were in a July drought. Even the ponds around our house were almost dried up. So, the big puddle was unbeknownst to us, an oasis for all the frogs, birds, and creepy crawlies living near our house.

As I looked toward the big puddle, I spotted what she was hollering about. A large black snake was facing us about 20 feet away with just its tail in the big puddle. I cocked and raise the .22 pistol, carefully aimed, and just as I squeezed the trigger a glob of soapsuds in my still soaped up hair, slid down my forehead into my eyes and burnt like battery acid, causing me to shoot just behind the snake. Naturally, the snake jumped forward after nearly having its hind end blown up, which naturally cause my Mom to yell, “Run Heath, the snake is coming.” With tears in my eyes and one hand on my towel, I began stumbling backwards while shooting at the ground in the general direction of the snake. This was complicated by trying to use my arm to wipe the shampoo away from my eyes with my gun hand.

I still had three shots left and by this time we were nearly on the back patio and it was too dark to see good and we could not find the snake or see it anywhere. So, Mom got in the little beige Renault and I climbed onto the hood – towel, gun, soapy hair and all; and she drove up to the puddle to see if we could find the snake. We never found the snake, but after Dad came home we did find out that the miraculous puddle was the result of a water line that apparently broke sometime around the thunderstorm.

So the water line was fixed and everyone lived happily ever after, except for the frogs that needed the water.

Thanks for visiting and God bless!

RHR

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Read My Response to the Foundry’s Critique of Cli Fi and Godzilla Movie

#Dan Bloom sent me this article and was kind enough to mention my book in his comments. For the article and all the comments please click here

You can scroll down to find mine – I posted on May 17 at 5:30 pm ET – but to make it easy I pasted them here.

“To echo Dan Bloom, not all Cli Fi promotes anthropogenic climate change. My Christian Thriller Malevolent Tide (R.H. Rauschenberger) is a mix of Michael Crichton’s techno approach and Frank Peretti’s unseen spiritual battle approach. My book deals with spiritual truth and the truth about what would happen if someone who values the earth over human life would do if he had the means to send us into an ice age and terminate most of the human population in the process.

The problem with science is not the data but its the assumptions and the biases that affect the assumptions and how the data is collected and the conclusions. The problem with climate science is the presumption that it borrows from evolution which itself borrows from Lyell and Hutton’s view of Geology which is that all things we see today are the result of the same processes we see today and that everything changes slowly over time. Climate science, evolution, and geology don’t take into account stochastic events that rapidly change everything. I have a BS in Wildlife Management, a MS in Biology, and a PhD in Physiological Sciences and I didn’t question the secular worldview of evolution until I had evolutionary biology and after I finished my PhD I had to reject the theory of evolution as it’s popularly presented because the probability of life resulting from random chance is statistically so remote that any truth-seeking scientist would have to drop it and search for another theory. More info? Read my book (find it on amazon) or go to answersingenesis.com or cri.org

Even Stephen Jay Gould who was a devout atheist had to find some way to reconcile the blips in the fossil record and so he came up with punctuated equilibrium. So whether you’re Christian or not, climate skeptic or climate believer, I think Malevolent Tide will make you think and promote understanding of how a conservative Christian thinks about climate change but more importantly, God.”

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Hear this humble advice: For a better blogging life, listen to your publisher and your wife : )

I’ve been mostly writing about the book that I wrote (okay…running a nonstop advertizement) – but in the last 24 hours I’ve had two people whom I trust and respect independently encourage me to share more of my story and my thoughts about other things, whether or not they directly connect to the book.

So…I’ve thought of three topics to blog about each week. Yes,  3 posts about 3 different topics each week. (A writer needs to write!)

Here they are:

1) How God has worked and is working in my life

2) Funny but true stories of life in Arkansas (and in Florida)

3) Christianity and Conservation – Connections, Connecting, Communicating

Please stay tuned – the first one will post this weekend!

Thanks and God bless!

RHR

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Malevolent Tide is a Christian Thriller that Deals Out Justice and Mercy and…

…Grace. Every Saint has a past, every sinner, a future.  Watch this video  – you will love it!

Trade your guilt for His grace!

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Malevolent Tide’s 5-star review by Dan Bloom – He coined the term Cli Fi: Climate Fiction

Dan Bloom’s Blog about Malevolent Tide

Dan Bloom’s review per Amazon.com Malevolent Tide is a cli fi novel that goes where few Christian-themed novels have gone before By Daniel Halevi Bloom on May 6, 2014 …. R.H. Rauschenberger has created a tour de force that not only explores man’s relationship to his God but also explores the intricate issues of global warming and climate change and hopefully this kind of book will have an impact on our policy makers. Before it is too late and a real “malevolent tide” engulfs every nation on Earth. We have 30 generations to fix things. I read this book and I see a vision here. Bravo!

goodreads includes Malevolent Tide on it CliFi list

Malevolent Tide: watch the trailer, read the synopsis, order your signed copy now!

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SBDR provides support to Arkansas – fed 1.2 Million meals during Sandy and 425,000 meals during Katrina

The Southern Baptist Disaster Relief served 425,000 meals per day during Katrina Response and within a month after Sandy hit they served 1.2 Million meals. They also responded with chainsaw crews. They bringing spiritual, physical, and emotional help to those in need. They have 82,000 trained volunteers and 1,550 mobile units and are one of the three largest volunteer disaster relief organizations in the U.S. along with American Red Cross and The Salvation Army. They were at NYC after 9/11 and in Haiti after the earthquake. As much as love is truly a verb and not a noun, so is compassion. They don’t really promote themselves or jump in front of the cameras to get credit because they do what they do because they love God first and their neighbor as themselves. Being a member of a local SBC church and born and raised in Arkansas, I’m proud of them and glad a portion of what I tithe to my church goes to them and to whoever needs their help.  God desires for each one of us to act on behalf of those in need. I pray He helps me to do more and you to do more. Read more at SBDR

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Time Magazine Article on CliFi Thrillers

See today’s time article on Cli Fi Thrillers  Read the first Christian Cli Fi Thriller – Malevolent Tide

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Malevolent Tide Lauded by Dan Bloom the man who coined the term Cli Fi

Dan Bloom’s Blog about Malevolent Tide

Dan Bloom’s review per Amazon.com “Malevolent Tide is a cli fi novel that goes where few Christian-themed novels have gone before. R.H. Rauschenberger has created a tour de force that not only explores man’s relationship to his God but also explores the intricate issues of global warming and climate change and hopefully this kind of book will have an impact on our policy makers. Before it is too late and a real “malevolent tide” engulfs every nation on Earth. We have 30 generations to fix things. I read this book and I see a vision here. Bravo!

goodreads includes Malevolent Tide on it CliFi list

Malevolent Tide: watch the trailer, read the synopsis, order your signed copy now!

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