Joseph Herrin (01-13-2011)
Parables Blog – New Look
This new year is turning out to be one of many changes in my life. Having spent the last two months of 2010 converting a school bus into a motorhome, I was able to move into the bus on the first day of the year. Having moved in, I am continuing to be met with more changes and transformations.
If you receive the Parables Blog through e-mail, as approximately 700 people do, you may not have noticed the new look of the website. The image at the top of this post shows what the blog re-design looks like. One of the main elements to change is the header graphic at the top of the blog. A brother in Christ from Germany, Angelo Becker, created the image to be used on the Heart4God website that he has been laboring on to produce a new design. I liked the image so much, I decided to use it at the top of the Parables Blog as well.
Angelo created the image without any input from me. I am very pleased with it. It includes numerous elements that are found in my writings, and in the particular ministry the Father has called me to. The tagline under the word Parables reads, “Bringing hidden things to light.” Angelo took this tagline from my previous header graphic, combining it with visual elements to portray it.
In the graphic he has included an image of the sunlight shining forth through a forested scene. He has also included an image of a well used Bible in the hand of a man. These things relate to the common themes of this website; perceiving hidden things in the Word of God and in the world about us. Our Father speaks in many ways, but His message remains hidden to most. Some do not have eyes to see, while others have been granted spiritual sight but rarely use it.
The butterfly, found on the man’s sleeve, is an image which I am fond of. I used the image of the butterfly on the cover of my first book, The Remnant Bride, and its symbolism is discussed in a number of writings found on the Parables Blog and Heart4God website.
Angelo will also be moving the newly designed Heart4God website live soon, though there is still content to be added. The old Heart4God website will continue to be available at the same web address, at least until the new site is completed. I am VERY pleased with the new look of the website. Angelo has a great eye for design, and has created a very clean and intuitive display. I believe everyone who sees it will be pleased with the new interface. It should be online next week. I will announce when it is available.
The changes continue as this year is starting out with many transformations. I have been spending time the past two weeks getting things organized in my motorhome. Not only does it serve as my residence, but it is my office where I carry out the writing and other tasks that are part of this ministry.
I do a large volume of printing in order to send material to shut-ins, and men and women in prison. I have printed hundreds of the Parables Bookshelf Newsletters since I was led of the Father to create them last year.
You can access these newsletters online and print them out to share with others. They contain all fourteen of the books I have posted on the Heart4God website, and numerous other writings. I have created additional newsletters that are not yet posted which I will be adding to the website soon.
I had been using an HP Officejet Pro 8500 All in One Printer. This inkjet was reasonably quick, and did automatic printing on both sides of the page. The ink costs were exorbitant, however. HP, as do all printer manufacturers, makes the majority of their profit selling ink cartridges. A single cartridge may cost a dollar to manufacture and fill with ink, but it is sold for $25 to $40, depending on which cartridge I was buying. I was going through a set of cartridges a couple times a month, costing hundreds of dollars, so I looked for a less expensive alternative.
After doing a fair amount of research, I settled on a Continuous Ink Supply System (CISS) that replaces the HP cartridges with ones designed to be fed a continuous supply of ink from a large reservoir. Following is an image of the system I purchased.
CISS Continuous Ink Supply System
This system cost $180, but it was paid for the first month I used it. I can purchase a bottle of ink for $20 that would have cost approximately $800 if I had continued to use HP cartridges. This type of system is available for nearly every model of printer sold today, especially the more popular ones.
I have printed thousands of pages since purchasing this system, and I am very pleased with it. The printhead on my HP printer recently went bad (they have a limited lifespan and are made to be easily replaced.). The all in one unit I had was really too large for my bus as the copy and scan assembly on top of the printer made it hard to find a suitable spot in my bus. The Father has blessed me with a number of financial gifts since the first of the year from brothers and sisters from near and abroad (as far away as Australia). I was therefore enabled to upgrade a number of components I use for my work, and set the motorhome up in a very orderly fashion.
I found that the HP Officejet 8000 uses the very same ink cartridges, and does not have the copy and scanner, which I never use. It is a printer like my previous one, but smaller, and I was able to find a very good place to set it up.
Printer and Supplies
One concern I had in working with the computer in the motorhome, was that I did not want a bunch of cables running all over the place. They not only give a cluttered appearance, but are a hazard when moving about a confined space. I therefore decided to set-up a wireless router to enable communication between devices without cables.
I gave some thought to this matter, and found it would be convenient to combine this with another need I had in the motorhome. I do not have a television as the Father has led me to not have one in my possession. This is one area in which I definitely need to “flee from temptation.” I do enjoy listening to music, and it is one thing I did not do when I was staying in other people’s homes. I had a small stereo in storage, with some small and decent speakers, so I set them up atop the refrigerator which is centrally located in the bus.
Space is an issue, and I had long ago found that it was much more convenient to copy all my CDs into the computer where I could manage them with iTunes, than to keep a stack of CDs on hand. As I as doing some research into wireless routers, I discovered that Apple has one called the Airport Express that will permit wireless networking with printers, as well as having the unique feature of being able to control a stereo remotely through the iTunes program on a PC. This met all my needs, and I was really quite surprised to find such a produce available.
I hooked one up and it works beautifully. I can organize and play all my music from the computer, even controlling the volume on the stereo, and also use the same wireless router to print all the material I publish. I have been using the system for several days now, and I am very happy with it.
One further blessing in the new year is that I was able yesterday to update my computer system. I have been using a Gateway laptop exclusively for the past 6-7 years. I have been very pleased with them, and upgraded to one with Windows Vista about 2-1/2 years ago. I had to replace the keyboard after the first year as I wore the numbers and letters off the keys with all the typing I do. (I cleared 15,000 e-mails out of my Gmail account yesterday. None of these were spam. They were all correspondence I have answered in the past few years.)
Before another year was out I had worn the numbers off the second keyboard, and as it was no longer under warranty, I looked for an alternative to replacing it. I found that Michael’s arts and craft store carried some raised (rounded) letters with sticky backs. I super glued them to the keys on my keyboard, and they have worked very well.
Keyboard with Pastel Letters
About a week ago the touchpad died on the laptop, so I began using a wireless mouse with it. It was beginning to show its age, and my eyes have also begun to feel the strain of working with a 14″ screen. Consequently, I purchased a new computer, and it is tremendously easier to work with. It is an All-in-One system manufactured by Gateway. The monitor and computer are all one unit. It also has a wireless keyboard and mouse, so I am enjoying the lack of tangled wires.
Some of you may have read in my writings that the Father has often used the number 235 to signify His grace for provision. The number 23 relates to Psalms 23 (The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want…) The number 5 signifies grace. I have become accustomed to the Father speaking to me with these numbers in this particular regard.
A couple days ago my daughter Kristin picked up my mail, and she called me with excitement in her voice. She said someone had sent a generous gift. When I got in my van to go meet her and pick up my mail, I looked at the odometer, and the trip meter read 235. I took time to take a picture of it before driving to see her.
I filled up with gas and reset the trip meter, and two days later when I went to Best Buy to purchase a new computer I looked at the odometer in the van and it once again read 235. This time it read 235.8. The number 8 represents new beginnings.
It is as if the Spirit of Christ is testifying that in all the changes of this new year that it is a new beginning for ministry. Things are being renewed. That which is deficient is being replaced. Interestingly, I looked at the processor specifications on the new computer when I got it home, and it is and AMD Athlon II X2 235e. The number 235 once more stood out to me. One thing that arrested my attention even more is the name of the computer. Here is an image I took of the box.
Some of you who heard the message I shared this past year on my trip across the country which was titled “The Gate and the Way” will recognize the significance of this name. There is One Gate, and the is One Way that leads to life, and few there are who find it.
I have much more to share, but this post is getting long and I need to get it on the blog.
May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days!
Heart4God Website: http://www.heart4god.ws
Parables Blog: www.parablesblog.blogspot.com
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063