Chaplain Larry Randolph’s beautiful white Labrador Retriever, Gracie, and Chaplain Steve Kesler’s Greyhound/shepherd,Bruce have achieved Royal Ambassador Distinguished for achieving over 5000 visits to various places all over the country. These amazing therapy dog’s have brought joy, happiness, comfort, love and peace to thousands of people and opened a door of opportunity for us to tell people about God’s love, compassion and forgiveness. There is no way to officially register these visits, however it is believed that these two are included in a handful of therapy dogs in the world that has reached this level. In that context, there have been many incredible experiences that have been registered by us in the mist of these visits.Dogs can teach us a lot about life, loss, and merciful grace.
Currently, there are five Canines for Christ therapy dogs that have achieved over 1,000 registered Community visits. These dogs are amazing ambassadors for Christ in their community and deserve special recognition.
Did she really see angels?
“The March morning was crystal clear and beautiful. One of God’s most gorgeous days in Florida as the rest of the country was experiencing cold and wet weather. Friday’s was our usual day to visit the James A Haley Veteran’s Hospital in Tampa Florida and for several years we had been visiting the veterans that are in the spinal care unit, traumatic brain injury unit, hospice units ,intensive care unit and psychiatric ward. As the hospital volunteer in charge of the Animal Assisted Therapy Program in the hospital, my wife, Susan and I with Gracie have been allowed access to almost every ward in the hospital as we visit patients. We had just completed an hour-and-a-half visit and seen dozens of patients, as we entered the hospice unit for our final round of visits. Immediately upon entering one of the nurses came out of a room and at that moment told us that the hospice patient was in his last few minutes and his wife and family were surrounding him and asked if we would come in and pray with them.
What I saw then was an amazing journey into what a dog sees and senses in ways that we cannot because of our inability to focus because our minds are too busy thinking about other things. As Gracie entered the room after the first few steps she froze. Immediately she stared at the man that was dying in the bed and her eyes were fixed on him. That is not her normal meet and greet behavior as her purpose as the therapy dog is to go to each person in the room with her warm nose, wagging tail and soulful eyes to offer her head and back for petting and warmth companionship. In this particular case she stared directly at the man and did not move for what seemed like minutes.
She then moved very slowly forward to the very edge of the bed then placed her nose on the man’s hand and looked very carefully and soulfully into his eyes. She remained there for to seemed like minutes and then she lay down at his feet. I believe what she saw was God’s angels that were surrounding the bed and that we’re getting ready to carry this man into the loving arms of Christ in heaven. Dogs have senses that we cannot comprehend as our minds and visions are clouded with many other things that control the theater in our minds. This amazing dog knew something was different in that room. It was if she was communciating to the man it’s going to be ok, go ahead and let these angels take you and the next time that you will take a breath and open your eyes you will be in the presence of your Lord and Savior Jesus. It’s going to be ok…you can let go. The room , full of family, friends, and hospital staff was overwhelmed at what they saw.You could feel the presence of God’ angels and the comforting mercy of the Holy Spirit, as he let go and passed into his eternal home with his Lord. ”
Did she really see God’s angels? Do you believe?
” Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation”Hebrews 1:14
“Finally, the beggar died and was carried by the angels to be with Abraham.” Luke 16:22
This is a beautiful photo of CFC therapy dog “Skipper” as he brings smiles and God’s unconditional love to this cancer patient at Hope Lodge in Tampa, FL. It seems like the light from Heaven was shining down on them at this moment.
Unconditional love is caring about the happiness of someone without any thought of what we might get for ourselves. It is Love Without conditions and without any limitations. Jesus gave his unconditional love to each of us as he shed his blood on the cross as a sacrifice of agape love no matter who we are or what we have done. In a similar way, dogs share that unconditional love to their human Masters. They love us unconditionally without any limitations as to our wealth, race, health, attitude, political affiliation, or anything else. They are amazing creatures of trust, faithfulness, forgiveness, grace and unconditional love.
” It does not matter where you are in your life…just who is by your side.”
A Single Thought: God’s purpose and plans may seem elusive at times, but are never far from those who seek Him.