Poems, Personal Stories, and Observations

Archive for the ‘Faith’ Category

Rejoice with Me / Love Is Worth It!

Rejoice with me, for my cat was lost and now is found! (paraphrase — see Luke 15:6, 9, 24).

Last night our younger indoor cat (Pepper), a male, escaped during a thunderstorm. We’ve had him less than a year and he doesn’t know the neighborhood, which possibly has coyotes. I know that many cats do return, and sure enough, he was back in the morning, not even wet!

On the grand scale of what happens to people, this event was not a big deal, but nevertheless I was praying and asked others to pray, was somewhat anxious, and didn’t sleep much. It did make me consider many things, one of which is how God pursues us relentlessly when we are lost. He is an awesome God!

In Matthew 18:10-14, Jesus says, “Take care that you do not despise one of these little ones; for, I tell you, in heaven their angels continually see the face of my Father in heaven. What do you think? If a shepherd has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. So it is not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.”

The morning after my night of poor sleep, I considered how I would lure Pepper back. Since we have another cat that I didn’t want to escape, I put her in a room and shut the door. I opened the back glass sliding doors about eight inches, then put some wet and dry cat food near the door. Soon he appeared at the door, after I had heard a bit of meowing, but he wouldn’t come in right away. I backed off to about 30 feet away, and after some more meowing, he rushed into the house towards me. I scooped him up and hugged him like a baby!

So my heart was full after a rotten night. This brought to mind another passage from the Bible, John 16:20-22 (No, I do not have these passages memorized; I cut and paste them from websites.): “Very truly, I tell you, you will weep and mourn, but the world will rejoice; you will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy. When a woman is in labor, she has pain, because her hour has come. But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy of having brought a human being into the world. So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.”

It’s hard to believe in joy while we’re going through sorrow, but when Pepper returned, I certainly experienced that the sorrow had been worth it! It hurts at times to love God or others, but we suffer because of the love that we have, and the love is worth it!

The Reason I Garden

I have a passion for plants and gardening. Perhaps this video will explain why:

Please pray for the boy in the video.

Jesus Waiting

I wait for you in long, dark days,

In silent places far from crowds.

 

I wait for love’s most tender words,

For glances with your love so full.

 

I wait, and do not force myself

On hearts that are not ready yet.

 

I wait until that day you come

And we will then be one at last.

Send the Rain Again

Lord, please send the rain again

Upon the dry and dusty land.

Send it down so we can drink;

Send it on the sea and sand.

 

Send refreshment that we need.

Desperate, we await Your plan.

Hungry, needing nourishment;

Thirsty, knowing that You can –

 

Bring beauty out of ugliness,

Bring joy from sorrow extreme,

Bring order out of great chaos,

And bring alive our dreams.

 

Why do You tarry, oh so long?

How long before Your plan matures?

Teach us to follow Your commands;

That You will triumph, is sure.

 

Without You, we are frozen still.

Without You, we are lost.

But with You, there is hope and light;

I look upon Your cross.

Mercy

How the wind is moaning,

And how the trees are groaning.

The cold wind, it is roaming

To find its place of rest.

 

How my heart is yearning,

And to the light is turning.

Every day, I’m learning

To find my peace at last.

 

The wheels of time are turning;

So many people hurting.

The millstones, they are grinding

Until the end of time.

 

The flowers, they are flourishing,

The Word of God is nourishing.

With many people perishing,

God’s mercy we must show.

 

Come Down, Come Down

Come down, come down, Lord Jesus,
And feed your hungry sheep.

Come down, come down, oh Father,
Bring water from the deep.

Come down, oh Holy Spirit,
Refresh our weary souls.

Come down to earth,
And give new birth,
Let sin and sadness
Transform to gladness.

Cast doubt and fear
Away from here.

Let dark deeds die
And hatred lie
Lifeless
And defeated.

Lift up our souls
And take control.
Forgive our sins;
Bring life within.

Let parch-ed tongues
Your wine imbibe —
Refreshing pools
Bring on the cool
Of souls made bright
Within Your light.

The Existence of Evil Proves God’s Love

This came to me a few days ago.  A friend said that it was good as far as it went,
but that there wasn't enough about God's chastisement.  I added one sentence about
that later. At any rate, here it is.  Comments are welcome.

---------------------------------------------------------

The title statement may seem shocking or incomprehensible.  Evil brings much pain
and suffering to this world.  Bitterness, hatred, trauma, violence, and it goes on
and on.  History is littered with the consequences of evil.

But we need to know this:  Love is something that can never be forced.  You cannot
MAKE someone love  you.  You can attempt to make yourself more attractive to them
perhaps, but attracting the person doesn't necessarily mean they love you; they 
may be out for their own pleasure, or trying to fulfill a need.

God's love, however, is totally pure.  God IS love.  He will never force us to 
choose Him, and if He did, it wouldn't be real love; it would be a lie.  Therefore,
God allows us to accept or reject Him.  He doesn't want false love.  He knows that
real love is a totally free decision.

Don't confuse what people may have presented to you as God's love; there may be
a confusion in your heart and mind between how people may have treated you,
how some bad things have happened to you, and what you would consider love.  
Instead, go read the Bible and see how merciful God is to the woman caught in 
adultery (John 8:1-11), or the book of Judges, where over and over God rescued 
His wayward people, or the books of Ezra and Nehemiah, where God mercifully brings
back His people to Israel after a period of exile for their grievous sins.
Notice the story of Peter in John 18:15-18, 25-27 and 21:15-19, how Jesus gently
draws Peter back to Him after denying him three times.  You will notice that God
is always offering love, even when people are doing wrong things.  

You may not be aware of the things you are choosing.  It may even be that some 
people unconsciously choose or reject God's love.  I am not the one to judge 
whether you have accepted or rejected God.  But, I do believe that if you reject
His love, evil will grow.  Maybe you don't even realize you're doing it.

So, God allows us incredible freedom.  He gives us real love, and He wants only
real love from us. It is our choice to accept His love or not. [His love can 
include chastisement, but it's a loving chastisement designed to guide us back to
His truth.] The consequences of our choice are huge.

Tale of the Rat: Two Sequels

THAT FEARFUL THING

That fearful thing did quiet lurk.
It disappeared into the dirt.

I dreaded to that thing go near;
With apprehension I did fear.

I set a trap to catch that thing.
I’d catch it good, with trap to sting.

I knew it must a monster be.
I knew it lurked to get at me.

What wonder did my eyes behold —
‘Twas not a rat, but lizard bold.

It looked benign, it stared at me.
It did not jump — sat quietly.

And now I’ve given the thing a name.
My fear misplaced — it’s not to blame.

—————————————————————————————————————————

IN DARK SHADOWS

In dark shadows live our fears;
In half-seen pictures, fear comes near.
In hidden places lurk our doubts;
In darkest alleys, doubt comes out.

Our thoughts get twisted, tied in knots —
Contorted, garbled — truth it’s not.
Imagination — it runs wild.
We’re fearful like a little child.

Until the light of love turns on,
Until God’s truth shines like the sun.
Until we give Him all our fears —
And then He calms and dries our tears.

The Wanderer

Lost in the desert,
Mouth parched and dry,
Wandering always,
Wondering why.

Shadows approaching;
Must keep at bay —
Walk toward the sunlight;
On the path stay.

Desperate searching,
Cold from the chill.
Is all this wandering
Really Your will?

Increase my faith,
My sins forgive.
Make my path straight,
So I can live.

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