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My Dove
by Lance Gargus
12/01/07
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I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest-
Psalm 55:6

Listen, sweet Dove, unto my song, And spread thy golden wings in me; Hatching my tender heart so long, Till it get wing, and flie away with Thee. Author: George Herbert

Wings Of A Dove (Hymn)

On the wings of a snow white dove, He sends His pure sweet love
A sign from above, On the wings of dove.

When troubles surround us, When evils come
The body grows weak, The spirit grows numb
When these things beset us, He doesn't forget us
He sends down His love, On the wings of a dove.

On the wings of a snow white dove, He sends His pure sweet love
A sign from above, On the wings of dove.

When Jesus went down To the river that day
He was baptized In the usual way
And when it was done, God blessed His Son
He sent Him His love, On the wings of dove

On the wings of a snow white dove, He sends His pure sweet love
A sign from above, On the wings of dove.

When Noah had drifted, On the flood many days
He searched for land, In various ways
Troubles he had some, But wasn't forgotten
He sent him His love, On the wings of a dove.

On the wings of a snow white dove, He sends His pure sweet love
A sign from above, On the wings of dove.

The Dove was, by far, one of the most important birds in the Bible. For it was the poor man’s sacrifice and widely kept as a domestic bird. Various cultures and religions conceived of birds, the denizens of the heavens, as divine revelations, and the bearers of heavenly messages of guidance. The bird was man’s soul or spirit as it was released from the body in ecstasy or in death. It was seen as the embodiment of liberty and the transcendence of the soul, the victory spirit over matter.

In Judaism, the dove signified the love of God for His Chosen People, the Israelites. White doves, signs of purity, were sacrificial offerings offered for purification at the Temple in Jerusalem. The Old Testament symbolized the dove in various forms. The dove was frequently used in the "Song of Songs," largely to convey terms of endearment: in their behavior, the doves paired for a long time. "Oh how beautiful, your eyes are like doves ..." (Songs 1: 15).

The Hebrew word for dove is Yonah, coming from the root meaning of a moaning sound, "I moan like a dove" (Is 38: 14). This would explain the call of many species of doves.

"My dove, that hides in holes in the cliff or in crannies on the high ledges" (Songs 2: 14) is a confirmation of their nesting habits. Doves make nests of twigs and scraps of debris, sometimes on rocks or in holes in cliffs, but mostly in trees and bushes. Jeremiah’s simile in the "Judgment of Moab," telling the people "to be like a ‘dove’ that makes its nest inside the hole’s mouth," confirms the nesting habit of the bird in ancient times.

In Christian lore and tradition, the dove is usually the symbol of the Holy Spirit or "heavenly messenger," particularly found in portrayals of the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary. It is also seen denoting the Holy Spirit descending on Christ at His Baptism: "He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove to alight upon Him ..." (Matt. 3: 16-17). Later on, in Matt. 10: 16, "be wary as serpents, innocent as doves," seems to imply the meaning of gentleness.

Christian art depicts the dove as hovering over the Virgin Mary’s head, symbolizing Mary’s submissive innocence. Numerous saints have also been depicted with hovering doves (sign of Divine inspiration), such as St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Fabian, St. Gregory the Great, St. Louis, and St. Dustan. In early Christian paintings, the dove’s head is surrounded by a "Golden Nimbus," frequently seen in the form of a cross or of seven rays terminating in seven stars to symbolize the seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

The dove also became the Christian symbol of "Peace" as seen in the catacombs of Rome. Figured on tombs and sarcophagi, the dove also represented grief and martyrdom.

It has been stated that no birds were more persecuted than doves — yet the Bible regarded them as worthy of being offered upon the altar.

Doves were also the only domesticated birds kept in large numbers by the Israelites. It became fashionable, at the time, to build huge dovecotes on the ledges inside the walls. King Herod was referred to as a breeder of doves, as recorded by Josephus the Jewish Historian. During the Roman period, historical references mentioned that these dovecotes sometimes housed as many as 5000 birds. Even large caves were adapted for this purpose. E.g. An example can still be seen in the Judean Hills near Beit Guvrin.

Relationship of doves within the flock, as well as with man, inspired images of love. The representation of lovers clearly was a reflection of the monogamous faithfulness of a dove couple that jointly raised their brood. The homing instincts of doves suggested the image that the bird was a harbinger of good tidings — like the dove in the story of the Flood. "She came back to him towards evening with a newly plucked olive leaf in her beak ..." (Gen. 7: 11).

This characteristic is why doves served both as navigational functions as well as message bearers. And in my moment when I needed an answer to a prayer, He sent his messenger a dove. I prayed for peace in my heart and with others. As I raised my head, I seen the dove appear from nothing. It flew straight at me at what seemed slow motion. I was able to see every detail of the dove in flight. This dove landed on the church top after this. As I started my vehicle to leave this dove followed me. It went to the house across the road from the church to wait on me. It acted as if it wanted me to follow it. I went on. And it went back to land upon the church.

The next few days I seen my pure white dove. It shone with a brightness I had never seen upon anything before. It flew in a continuous circle like it was waiting for someone. I looked up and it landed a short distance from me. As I entered the building the dove walked back and forth outside, continuously looking at the building. It felt like its eyes were upon me. I can't explain it.

I had never seen a white dove before in my life in the wild. This one seemed to have taken up with me. I don't know if it's the holy spirit, my father's spirit permitted by God to watch over me, or just a dove. But I know one thing it was sent to me by God regardless. At a moment when I needed to see His love. There are no coincidences in life. God plans each step. We may not understand it now but one day we will.

Oh, how wonderful, this soul searching has become with its ups and its downs. Blessed be Your name for the ages.

by

Lance Gargus
at
www.lancessoulsearching.com

If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW

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