Tag Archives: Jesus

Hope in the Darkness of Winter

Tomorrow is the shortest day of the year. On Monday, the days will begin to grow longer and we will have more light. So I thought I would share the revised version of a poem I originally posted here. This revised version is included in my book Light in My Darkness. I’m also sharing this for Open Link Night over at dVerse Poets Pub.

Hope in the Darkness

Sun sinks below the horizon
Darkness envelopes all life in my view
Each night darkness comes sooner
Lengthening twilight my heart does rue

This season, winter, brings darkness
It engulfs the light of my soul
Sometimes the darkness is deeper
And blacker than the deepest mine of coal

But winter does not last forever
Spring and summer bring sun ever near
Hope of a Light everlasting
Is all my darkened soul needs to hear

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Without a Wound?

I don’t usually reblog stuff. There is enough bouncing around in my own head that needs to get out onto my blog. But I just reread Without a Wound? on the Broken Believers blog. I cry every time I read it. This thought that “Without your wound where would your power be?” is so powerful. This post could easily have been the preface to Light in My Darkness.

If you are wounded or in darkness, read this post and find meaning in your struggles.

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Come, Baby Jesus

Claudia is having a little fun tending bar at dVerse Poets Pub today, so I thought I’d join in. Her Meeting the Bar prompt today is to write about a character in a book coming alive or someone ending up in a book. I love the creativity of this prompt. And since it is the Christmas season I decided to write my first Christmas poem of the year.

Come, Baby Jesus

I set it up just yesterday
My favorite little nativity
Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus
surrounded by angels and kings

My mother-in-law made it
The year of my birth she created it
Each ceramic piece of the scene
hand painted, even the angels’ wings

I set it up just yesterday
But where could it have gone
It’s no longer on the china hutch
where it really does belong

Oh my, I see what has occurred
My favorite little nativity
has come alive in my dining room
It’s really quite absurd

I guess I should be more careful
what I pray for as just today
I asked the Lord Jesus
to come into my home to stay

 

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Jerusalem

The Poetics prompt over at dVerse Poets Pub today is to write about a city or cities. I tried to think of something to write about my own city or about trips I’ve made to other big cities, like New York or San Francisco. But my mind wouldn’t stay there. I kept coming back to Jerusalem—a city I’ve never been to but would love to visit some day. A friend was recently there and her pictures on Facebook made me want to go all the more.

Jerusalem

Jerusalem, Jerusalem
City where my Savior died
I pray you find His peace

Jerusalem, Jerusalem
Ancient city from of old
I pray God’s blessing on you

Jerusalem, Jerusalem
A city exiled to Babylon
I pray your safe return

Jerusalem, Jerusalem
The city with many enemies
I pray protection for your people

Jerusalem, Jerusalem
A new city you’ll one day be
I pray the Lord’s return

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Worth the Wait!

Book coverWaiting is a part of life. It seems like I’ve been experiencing a lot of it lately, and been learning patience in the process.

Some things are worth the wait. Cookies baking in the oven are worth the wait, especially if they are made with love and good ingredients. A visit from a good friend or family member is worth the wait, especially when the time together is precious. A trip to a warm and sunny destination is worth the wait, especially when one is tired of the cold.

The Israelites learned that waiting for the tabernacle to be finished was worth the wait. And it was a long wait. It took a year for all of the work to be completed. But when the tabernacle was completed, the Lord came to dwell with them and His Glory filled the tabernacle. See Exodus 40.

The birth of Jesus was also worth the wait. Hundreds of years before His birth, the prophets foretold of His coming and that He would be a ransom for the sins of many. The Israelites had waited a long time for His birth; some are still waiting. But for those who know the Lord Jesus, the wait was worth it.

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I’ve been experiencing a lot of waiting lately. In my last two posts—here and here— I mentioned some of this waiting. But now the waiting is over! (Well, sort of. I’m still waiting for my author copies to come in the mail).

My poetry book, Light in My Darkness: Poems of Hope for the Brokenhearted, is now available on Amazon.com! I just approved the proof this morning and it’s already available for sale. It took over a year, longer than it took the Israelites to build the tabernacle, but the work God set out for me to do is finally completed. And one of my favorite parts is that my son designed the cover, drawing the original cover art in Photoshop.

My hope and prayer is that the Lord will dwell in the hearts of those who read it and be blessed by the Light in my darkness.

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More Waiting

Well, I said yesterday I’d update you all when my files were approved by CreateSpace, and they have now been approved. (It actually happened yesterday afternoon, but I didn’t have time to post an update).

What now? More waiting! I was able to look at a digital proof and even a 3D digital model of my book, but CreateSpace recommends that authors that are new to working with them get a print proof before approving their book for distribution. I thought this was a good idea so I ordered a print proof. It should be here by next Monday. I can hardly wait!

But wait I must, and maybe pray that it will get here earlier.

This book is just the first to be published by my new company, John 14:6 Publications. I already have the next book of poetry partially drafted and organized. And I have a daily devotional planned after that. So I guess I better get used to waiting because there is a lot of that in the publishing business, even if you self-publish through CreateSpace and Amazon.

I’ll let you all know when the book is available for purchase, which will hopefully be some time next week.

I’m just so excited! I know the poetry God helped me write is going to be such a blessing to others, so it’s hard to wait for it to be ready. But if I’ve learned anything about God over the years, He has a plan and timeframe for everything, and it’s often much different than my plan and timeframe.

And so I learn patience. I could definitely use a little more of that.

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The Waiting Game

I’ve had butterflies in my stomach since I woke up this morning. Last night, around 9:00, I uploaded the cover art for my poetry book—Light in My Darkness: Poems of Hope for the Brokenhearted—to CreateSpace. Now I’m just waiting for CreateSpace staff to finish the review process and let me know if my files fit their technical specifications. I’m supposed to hear back within 24 hours, so I’ll know soon, but the waiting is hard.

In the meantime I thought I’d share the cover art with you all. This PDF—Light in My Darkness cover- Final flat—is both the front and back cover. This is the actual file uploaded to CreateSpace. It was created by my son, Benton R. Kruschke, who is an amazing artist and is currently an art student at the Art Institute of Portland. I just love how it turned out.

I also want to take a moment to thank Bryan Lowe of Broken Believers blog for writing the foreword and to share here what he wrote:

Never underestimate the sheer power of poetry. It is formidable. Linda knows this, and she has compiled this book from direct experience. And that is remarkable. I hope you’ll read this with an inquisitive heart and an eager mind. Good poetry should carry a weight of truth wherever it might lead. All that it requires is all of you. Poetry requires your full attention, at least to appreciate it fully.

Linda honors God in what she has written. I know her intention is to bring Him glory, and she does it fearlessly. What you read here comes from life’s furnace— things will be imparted through these poems. I pray the Lord’s blessing on this little book.

Read this book. Squeeze out the truth each poem has. I know that the author would appreciate it immensely.

Anyway, now I’ll go back to waiting. I’ll let you all know when the waiting is finally over.

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The Greatest Winner

The Tuesday prompt over at dVerse Poets Pub today is to write a poem about winners or losers, or both. Mary noted these attributes of winners from an article she read (and linked to): “Winners are driven, winners take responsibility, winners are eager to learn, winners are positive thinkers, winners are humble.” These attributes reminded me of the greatest winner in all of history and so decided to write a poem about him using these attributes as my guide.

The Greatest Winner

The greatest winner in all history
was executed for crimes
He did not commit

Yet He was driven
by love and by grace
to take the punishment for all

He was not responsible
for our great sinfulness
but took responsibility nonetheless

Though He knew everything
since He was God, still
He longed to learn what others knew

He had the positive thinking
of a man of great faith and power
calming storms and healing the sick

But despite His greatness and majesty
He humbled Himself for our sake
was gentle like a Lamb to the slaughter

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Heaven Is My Home

The Poetics prompt over at dVerse Poetry Pub today was to write about a fantasy world. Being ever the rebel, I decided to write about a real world that many think is mere fantasy.

Heaven Is My Home

Streets of gold
No sun, moon, or stars
because Jesus himself is
all the Light that’s needed

Some say it’s a fantasy
Pie in the sky when you die
but I know in my heart it’s real
Heaven is my home

Joy abounds
No pain, tears, or sin
because Jesus himself paid
the price and made all right

Some say it’s a fantasy
Pie in the sky when you die
but I know in my soul it’s real
Heaven is my home

God’s throne of
ruby and jasper, flashes
of lightening surround Jesus
the Lamb upon His throne

Some say it’s a fantasy
Pie in the sky when you die
but I know in my heart it’s real
Heaven is my home

Cherubim, seraphim
Living creatures like lions,
ox, and eagle covered in eyes
singing Holy, Holy, Holy

Some say it’s a fantasy
Pie in the sky when you die
but I know in my soul it’s real
Heaven is my home

And forever I will sing
Holy, Holy, Holy
to the Lamb who was slain
because Jesus is my King

 

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Patience in the Homestretch

It’s been awhile since I posted anything. October 30 was my last post, to be exact, so it’s been 25 days. I blame it on being in the homestretch of finishing my poetry book.

I finished the final edits of the poems and decided on how to break it into chapters two weeks ago, but then I agonized over format, font, and what Bible verses to include after some of the poems. I thought I had it all done, then I read the specs on CreateSpace for how to format the final PDF and realized I hadn’t done something right. That required changing the font size and paragraph formatting of each individual poem.

Two days ago I uploaded the final PDF to CreateSpace and set up all the necessary book information. I also registered my new publishing company, John 14:6 Publications, with the Oregon Secretary of State as an Assumed Business Name to be the publisher of this and future books I have planned. I’m all ready to publish!

Except, I don’t have a cover yet. My cover designer, who is my son, is still working on designing my cover. I’m trying to be patient, but it’s hard, because I’m anxious to be done with this project. I feel like an overdue pregnant woman. (And trust me, I know how that feels because my son was overdue.)

But in Bible Study Fellowship we recently studied a passage that reminded me of why I asked my son to draw the cover art in the first place. Exodus 31:1-5 (NIV) says:

Then the Lord said to Moses,
“See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills—to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts.”

I know that God has gifted my son with artistic skill, the ability to draw beautiful designs. I’ve seen the concept sketch he did for my book cover—which only took him 10 minutes to sketch while I read him some of my poems—and I know it was truly inspired. I know that God gave me this resource so that I didn’t have to pay someone else to create my cover.

I also know that God told Moses to make sure the skilled and gifted workers, who fashioned the tabernacle exactly according to God’s pattern shown to Moses, got their Sabbath rest. Even though the work of building the tabernacle was important, regular rest in the Lord was more important. And I knew when I asked my son to create my book cover that he had other responsibilities, including art school and work, and that he also needs his rest.

And so I am being patient. The book will be done soon and available on Amazon.com and other online retailers. My goal was to have it published by year’s end and by the grace of God that will happen.

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