(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 11) There comes that day in early June, when Mary and I seem to exclaim in unison, "Wow! The wild roses are in bloom." Most of the small 5/8 inch (1.5 cm.) wild roses at Sleepy Hollow Lake and the surrounding area are white, or white with a slight pink blush, but every so often this pink variety catches our attention.  It's as though God is saying to us, "Because you appreciated my white roses, let Me show you My pink ones."
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 06) In our ministry to help make this a more sensitive, loving and compassionate world, we also encounter the most horribly cruel and inhumane treatment of animals that anyone could imagine.  The torture, pain, suffering and death that occurs every day in the animal agriculture industry, particularly on factory farms and in slaughterhouses, can drive a sensitive person into a deep depression, if it were not for these times when we can stop and "smell the roses", and come to realize that our efforts are not in vain, and that we must continue our peaceful endeavors.  These are the thankful and quiet times when we can rest in the Lord, and then go forth refreshed.   It's very much like going forth with the assurance that the buds will open to reveal more roses, but unlike the roses which wither, the Lord and His encouragement is always present.
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 07) When we "take the time to smell the roses", we also should be able to appreciate the wonder of God's creation. If we don't blind ourselves to the truths before us, we can smell the perfume; we can see the buds; we can see the unfolding of the 5 petals and the numerous stamens balled-up around the pistil; and we can see the magnificence of the the fully developed flowers. And, if we do not blind ourselves to these truths, then we should also recognize the pain and suffering in this world and do everything possible to put an end to it.
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 08) Everything in our environment presents us with something wonderful to behold. Each type of plant is different from others, such as the flowers of the Rosa multiflora are produced in large corymbs (clusters on a single stem), and within each type, each stem, leaf, leaflet (of which there are 5-9 on each leaf), and bud and flower present further uniqueness, just as every person and animal has his or her own individual appearance and personality. Isn't it time we begin appreciating what God has given us instead of destroying our environment, our fellow creatures and each other? We believe it is!
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 09) Our "macho" world is more interested in watching wrestlers bash each other over the head with folding chairs than it is in watching the beauty of the wild rose and God's other creations.  The world calls us to take up a weapon and kill an animal instead of picking up a camera to preserve moments such as this one of a small pink wild rose bush.
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 10) In this bee's eye view of the small pink rambling rose, we can easily see the five slightly heart shaped leaves, the single pistil, and the numerous stamens. This kind of beauty needs to be preserved, for far too long a time, unscrupulous people have been trying to convince us that the evil and cruel things we do are actually good. If someone deliberately causes pain or suffering to a fellow human being or to an animal, or destroys the environment, it is evil, and the time has come for us to recognize this fact, and put an end to it. It's time we begin to praise the gentle, kind and compassionate acts we witness, and follow these examples. It's truly time for all of us to pause to "smell the roses" and profit from the experience. It's time for us to make Isaiah's words a reality: "They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea." (11:9)
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 01) In this photo, we can see the light pink blush that we mentioned previously. Is it really a light pink colored pink rose, or is it a slightly pink white rose? We don't know, but we do know that these roses are beautiful to see and smell.
(Wild Rose, Small Pink Rambling - 01a) In this closer look at the previous photo, we can more easily see the five saw toothed leaflets that are on each leaf (2 pairs opposite one another, and one terminal).  There can be as many as nine leaflets on each leaf.