Military veteran, author and businessman Barry Rice is a believer in the power and blessings that are available to everyone on a daily basis.
Yet there was a time when he felt a tremendous “disconnect” that he had difficulty taking to heart which further reinforced a sense of abandonment.
As a child, he had been given up and even though he was eventually adopted by loving, caring parents, he had difficulty shaking off the impact of a verse he had run across in the Bible.
The verse was Deuteronomy 23-2, which stated: “A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord, even unto his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord.”
He internalized the passage, deciding at that point that if God rejected him that he would reject God, even though that caused even greater sorrow.
Throughout his 70 years, he has moved from a number of tests and trials that included being an orphan thinking that God did not care for him, to being a Vietnam Veteran suffering a litany of disorders and conditions from the effects of exposure to Agent Orange, along with other personal challenges and missteps.
As an Army Captain, Infantry Branch, Rice had experienced grief over the loss of a brother-in-combat who saved his life but lost his own in the process.
Rice achieved great success in business with hard work, yet there will still a sense of something missing.
In 1990, he was standing on a beach in Florida late one night looking out at the black waters of the ocean right after he had heard the news that he had cancer that was late stage three or early stage four. It was Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma that was a direct result of his exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam.
Negative thoughts and self-pity began to swirl and spiral until he noticed that the horizon was beginning to lighten.
He noticed that the top of the sun was beginning to rise and then the water reflected the glow of the rising sun all the way to the shore like hands reaching out to warm and heal and inspire. The setting sun represented the need for giving thanks and resting.
The experience sparked a shift in his thinking and feeling.
He began to realize that there truly is a greater power that made the sun rise and the experience began to heal his spirit and way of thinking as he began to truly believe in the God who loves him.
It also set him on a path to building a bridge to recovery, success, responsibility - making a difference and honoring God.
He would beat cancer and he would also find ways to encourage others with his story of faith.
Rice also discovered four pillars that are necessary for building a bridge of recovery and success, with the first pillar being to have a clear specific vision of the future with God’s blessing. The second pillar requires realistic goals and an activity plan. The third pillar requires the willingness to do it and the fourth pillar is the commitment to worshipping and giving thanks for getting things done.
Rice has faced several battles with various forms of cancer due to exposure to Agent Orange, but he has always pressed on.
He is a keynote motivational speaker for veterans and civilians.
He is happily married to his wife, Ann, who shares his faith and commitment to doing the utmost for God’s highest. The couple has a blended family of four children.
Today his trials and troubles have been completely surrendered to the awesome triumphant presence of a loving God that shines through and extends His opens arms of love through a sunrise on the water.
“The Power and Blessings of a Sunrise” is a confessional of fear, missteps, frustration and anger that is turned into strength, commitment, focus, compassion and success in the loving light of God that shines every day as the sun and as His loving Son, Jesus Christ.
Barry Rice, who has also served as president of the Tennessee State Council of the Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA), wants everyone to know that blessings truly do come with each new sunrise.
The book is available in Kindle and paperback through Amazon.com.