Category Archives: Devotions

Gentle Answer


 A Gentle Answer

 “A gentle answer turns away anger, but a harsh word stirs up wrath.”

Proverbs 15:1 HCSB

 I witnessed a beautiful example of someone standing on the promises of this verse just last night at the soccer field. My son was playing against one of our friends. Her son was purposefully pushed down during a scuffle for possession of the ball where the referee immediately blew the whistle on the play. Every player on the field took a knee as the ref checked on my friend’s son as it appeared he’d hurt his shoulder. Parents were spread out sitting in the bleachers all the way down the sidelines in folding chairs. I looked up to see my friend walking in the opposite direction of where her son was on the field headed my way. She was walking quickly with a disgruntled look on her face and as she approached me I asked, “Is he okay? Did he hurt his shoulder?” She said, “I don’t know. I think he’s alright but I had to walk away from the stands before I got myself into real trouble.” My friend shared she’d heard a grandparent sitting in the stands shout “That was just payback! He got everything he deserved!”

 In the heat of that moment my friend had every right to lash back at that man. She was hurting as every parent does when their child is hurting and all that grandparent did was add fuel to the fire of pain. However, in order to prevent a wildfire, my friend chose to walk away.

 My friend provided a perfect picture of grace for everyone within an earshot distance of that grandparent to witness. I was in awe of her strength and impressed by her decision.

 How would you have handled that situation? To be honest, I can picture myself as a fire breathing dragon that probably would have turned in that moment to burn him down with single flame.

 How many opportunities do we miss to make a statement for Christ rather than for ourselves? My friend swallowed her pride and pain and had a greater purpose in mind.

 Let’s not have a Firing Back Monday, instead let’s have a Forgiving Monday, offering the same undeserving grace to others that Christ offers us daily. It will certainly impact a greater number for HIS kingdom!

 Only by HIS grace,
Melanie Kern




In 1969, my dad was the pastor of a little church in the little town of Windsor, Missouri. Our TV area was in our basement and our antenna didn’t go up very high, so when Apollo 11 astronauts were landing on the moon, we went next door to the church. There was a TV on the 3rd floor in the youth room and the antenna was in the attic, so it did better at picking up the live broadcast from Kansas City 90 miles away.

 As a 9-year-old, I saw Neil Armstrong on live TV deliver those famous words, “That’s one small step for man; one giant leap for mankind.” I don’t think Neil realized at the time how those words would mark a major shift in human history any more than I realized the impact that event would have on my own life. Half a century later, I remember it vividly, along with the black and white Tang juice commercials. Since then, I looked at the world as a place where ingenious things can and do happen. I have always looked outside the confines of what we think are limitations.

 Today and in days to come. you might not change the course of human history, but it is highly likely you will have the opportunity to change one human’s history. You might be the first person to extend forgiveness to someone. You might be the first person to give someone else grace, or the first to help them overcome debilitating circumstances, or the first to regularly treat them with kindness. The Apollo 11 crew made it to the moon because of an entire team doing something for the first time ever. What innovations will you and your team do together? Something revolutionary? Follow your passion today with wild abandon.

 Neil Armstrong said, “I guess we all like to be recognized not for one piece of fireworks, but for the ledger of our daily work.”

 Mark Mills, Chaplain / Director of Spirituality

Signature HealthCARE of Warren
2473 North Rd., NE
Warren, OH 44483



Go Back

Go Back

Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Rev 2:4

Last week as I was having Bible Study with the Residents at Signature Healthcare at Tower Rd there was a question I asked them to ponder. And it goes a little something like this. Do you remember when you first met the Lord? How did you feel? What did you do? Many began to share with me how they witnessed for God without fear. Others stated how they prayed for their enemies without hesitation. That’s good was my response, but the final question I asked them left them speechless.  Simply put, I asked them, “Are you still doing the things you just mentioned to me. You could hear a pen drop.

Well, I assured them that although life and circumstances can cause us to lose our focus there is still hope. I challenged them to go back and do what God has purposed for them to do.  Chaplain Army/Revolution, this is my challenge for you as well. We need to go back and do the things God has placed on our hearts to do at the facilities he has placed us in. Sometimes we get discouraged from lack of support or some other distraction that keeps us from accomplishing a task we desire to undertake in our facilities.  However, there is hope. I leave you with this promise.  Matthew 21:22: And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.


Lord thank you for another day.  Thank you for each individual that shall read this devotional. Lord, be with us as we go back and do the things you have placed on our hearts to do in the facilities you have placed us in. Amen.

Chaplain Robert Lee White III
Signature Healthcare at Tower Road
Marietta, Ga 30060


Are you “junzi”?


Here is some simple advice from a Chinese man who has been dead for 2,600 years.  The advice focuses on bosses and employees.  It worked then; it can work now.

According to this sage, a boss should treat his employees with kindness, and the employees ought to give the boss their loyalty.

How does your nursing facility stack up against this lofty relationship?

How much of this principle is working at your place?

Simply put, those nursing homes who use these principles, are humming right along, moving from victory to victory, while those who don’t spend most of their time slogging it out in internecine warfare, both overt and guerrilla, with often very, very messy results including a high casualty rate.  Where is your facility right now on the loyalty/kindness scale?

Kindness and loyalty in the workplace, what a surprising way to build a great company.

Superior Signature Stakeholders consciously practice these.

And those who practice them are more often not what Confucius would call “junzi”, or a superior man and woman.

Are you “junzi”?

I enthusiastically aspire to be “junzi”.  What about you?  Is it possible that it may start with you today?

No waiting is necessary.


Chaplain Larry Limbaugh
Signature Healthcare of Gainesville


Stick to the Plan

Stick to the Plan

Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Rev 2:4

Ladies and Gentlemen, I LOVE SPORTS!!! I LOVE WATCHING A GOOD GAME THAT GOES DOWN TO THE WIRE. Yesterday was no exception. The Atlanta Falcons were playing against the Buffalo Bills at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta Georgia. I enjoyed how both teams played throughout the game until the fourth quarter.  In the fourth quarter the Atlanta Falcons had an opportunity to win the game, but they did not stick to the plan. In the first three quarters of the game they mixed the plays up by running and throwing.

Unfortunately, when the game came down to the wire they decided to implement a new plan instead of the one that was working for them. The sad thing in all of this is they had the opportunity to win if they just stick to the plan. Well, what about you. Are you going to be like the Atlanta Falcons and implement in new plan when you need to stick to the one that has been working for you. There is a saying that some quote but in my opinion do not really apply it.  It goes like this “If it’s not broke don’t try and fix it.


Prayer: Lord, thank you for another day of life. Thank you for the many blessings you have bestowed upon us. Help us Lord to stick to the plan. Amen

Chaplain Robert Lee White III
Signature Healthcare at Tower Road
Marietta, Ga 30060





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Stand as Tall as You Can


 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Isaiah 41:10

 My physical therapist told me last spring that when we injure any part of the spine, we tend to compensate with bad posture. We bend over, we stoop, we hunch … we try to feel better by standing in a way that actually makes it worse.

I wonder if we don’t do that in emotional, mental, and spiritual things. Somebody says something hateful and so we emotionally stoop, not holding our heads high, and maybe eat unhealthy comfort foods. Work or family life becomes extremely demanding and so we hunch and hunker down, crunching mentally. Maybe we get discouraged or depressed. Physical, mental, and emotional stress impact your spiritual posture and cause spiritual pain as well.

 The best answer, he said to me, in addition to stretching and strength-building, is to stand as tall as you can. He said if I do that, everything else will align and fall into place. Can we do that emotionally, spiritually, and mentally as well? When life smacks us down, we should stand as tall as we can in the face of adversity so that everything falls into place. We can do that when we stand tall in faith. The Creative Power of God will align everything so that the pieces of life fall into place.

 H.G. Wells said, “If you fell down yesterday, stand up today.”

 Mark Mills, Chaplain / Director of Spirituality

Signature HealthCARE of Warren
2473 North Rd., NE
Warren, OH 44483




Pray for us. We are sure that we have a clear conscience and desire to live honorably in every way.” Hebrews 13:18 (NIV)

You’ve probably heard the saying that you can measure your own integrity by what you do when no one else is looking. Most people can present the face of integrity in front of other people. It takes an honorable person to continue doing the right thing when they are the only witness.

I pass several church signs on my way to work and sometimes they have thought-provoking messages. One of them has read for the last few days, “There’s never been a right way to do a wrong thing.” I like that it reminds me at least twice a day the importance of integrity.

I like that that message is simple. If you’re ever confused about whether to do something that seems wrong, just measure it against whether it requires you do a wrong thing for something justifiable. If so, it’s still wrong. Living with a clear conscience is priceless, something we can only buy with integrity. We may not be perfect, but we can always strive to do the right thing.

Zig Ziglar said, “With integrity, you have nothing to fear, since you have nothing to hide. With integrity, you will do the right thing, so you will have no guilt.”

Mark Mills
Chaplain / Director of Spirituality
Signature Healthcare of Warren
2473 North Rd., NE Warren, OH 44483

God’s “Math” for Making a Difference

Matthew 5:16 (ESV)  “… let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

While exiting my car this morning, I noticed a bright shiny penny in the parking spot next to me. Hesitant to retrieve it, I thought to myself, “What the heck.” I rationalized that a penny really wouldn’t make a big difference, but then the Holy Spirit corrected me. God’s “math” unfolded in my mind and I realized that if 3,000* people contributed one penny – just for today, we would have $30 dollars. If 3,000 of us did that for 3 days, we would have enough money to buy a goat for someone in a 3rd world country.

Beyond being cute, according to World Vision at,

One goat can change everything. Her milk provides great protein to help children grow. The family can also sell any extra to earn money for medicines and other necessities. A healthy dairy goat can give up to 16 cups of milk a day. Goat’s milk is easier to digest than cow’s milk and is an excellent source of calcium, protein, and other essential nutrients that growing children need.”

I was reminded that our company’s Compassion Fund operates by the same “math.” One dollar doesn’t seem like it would make a difference (not even for a cup of coffee in most places); yet, each pay period many stakeholders contribute their “insignificant” dollars to make an invaluable difference in the lives of others. The outcome of our individual $1 has impacted other lives into the thousands of dollars given each year to make a difference – and it does.

Sometimes Jesus’ commission to go into all the world or to shine our “lights” can be overwhelming. Too often we over-burden ourselves with thinking that we have to do it all by ourselves. That was never His intention. From the beginning of their training, Jesus sent out the disciples two-by-two (not alone), and told them not to worry about what they would need.

We can accomplish more together. Together we make the differences that we cannot do alone; and every seemingly “insignificant” act is multiplied when we do it God’s way. When we take the time to give a smile, take a moment to listen, or give a $1, we do make a difference. (We were never designed to do life alone.) … In God’s “math,” just think of what our facilities (even our world) would be like if every stakeholder shared a smile, took a moment to listen, or give even a $1. … Now that would definitely make a difference!

Chaplain Basha Zackavich
Gastonia Care and Rehabilitation
“Make prayer your first response, not your final option.”


Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
Matthew 3:10 (NRSV)

A few years ago I helped someone remove a dead, nine foot tall evergreen tree. It was beyond any probability of resurrection. Before a new, thriving tree could be planted in its place, the dead one had to be removed. The dead tree couldn’t be trimmed and it couldn’t be cut off at the soil. For a new tree to be planted, the roots had to be removed, too, so that there would be room for the new one to grow. The amazing thing was that even with more than half the root ball exposed, my little Toyota RAV4 couldn’t pull it out. However, once the roots had been cut and the root ball was about eighty percent exposed, the tree finally let go of its grip on the soil. Even though the tree was entirely dead, its roots ran deep and it was not a simple matter of pulling it out. It took a lot of time and a lot of labor.

Sometimes we realize some part of our lives or workplace is dead or no longer working and we want something new take root. If we want to make fundamental changes when we are not bearing fruit, what is old and outmoded has to be removed by the roots. This involves habits, thought processes, ways of interacting. It may seem harsh to talk about putting the ax to the base of the tree. It is harsher still to prop up an old, outmoded system and harbor false hope that it is going to eventually work.

 Have you ever seen the movie, “Weekend at Bernie’s” with the two guys propping up a dead guy all weekend to make it look like he’s still alive? If you feel like you’re doing that with some aspect of your life, the good news is that the Light of Christ brings the ax to the root of the tree. We can’t make superficial adjustments to things in our lives without removing the old roots and expect to see the results we want. Dig down deep. Make a hole for the new thing you want to grow in your life and the entire universe will conspire to fill it with new growth.

Stephen Covey wrote in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,If you want small changes in your life, work on your attitude. But if you want big and primary changes, work on your paradigm.”
Deepak Chopra once said, “The symbolic language of the crucifixion is the death of the old paradigm; resurrection is a leap into a whole new way of thinking.”

 Mark Mills, Chaplain / Director of Spirituality

Signature HealthCARE of Warren
2473 North Rd., NE
Warren, OH 44483


Have you ever reviewed a conversation in your mind at the end of the day and suddenly realized that what you said to someone was understood differently than what you really intended?

It has been said, “we must listen to understand and not to reply.” It is also imperative for us to speak in such a way which promotes understanding. This includes everything from what we say to how we say it.

There’s a story told which illustrates this point about miscommunication with a conversation between a rich Texas rancher and a poor Tennessee farmer.

The rich rancher wanted to describe his vast land in Texas and remarked, “I can wake up at dawn and hop in the truck and drive till noon before I reach the end of my property.”

The poor farmer responded, “Yeah, I have an old truck that will break down like that too!”

So, remember when we are “communicating,” make sure to take into account the context of another’s life and feelings. What we say and how we say it must promote understanding too.

“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

(Prov. 18:21)

Laws Rushing, Chaplain

Director of Spiritual Care

Nashville Community Care and Rehabilitation