The Perfect Center – A Sestina

In Bible Study Fellowship we are studying the Life of Moses. One of the great truths about God that we are learning in Leviticus and Numbers is that God desires to be at the center of our lives, and that when He is at the center He provides for His people. I decided that I wanted to write a sestina about God as the perfect center of my life. Unlike the first sestina I wrote, this one is patterned after the original sestina so that each stanza has lines of 8, 11, 11, 11, 11, and 11 syllables, rather than each line being in iambic pentameter (not that I was successful with achieving iambic pentameter in my first one).

The Perfect Center

You desire to be my center
O God, You alone are worthy of my trust
Yet the deceit of this world plunders my faith
Where would I be without your immense mercy
Show me, Lord, clear direction I might follow
Guide me in Your perfect ways that I obey

Forgive me when I don’t obey
Bring me back, Lord, to You my perfect center
Never let me stray as Your will I follow
O Lord, You are the only one I can trust
Because of Your great compassion and mercy
I will forever believe, cling to my faith

I marvel at the strength of faith
That some days makes it effortless to obey
Resting in the bosom of Your great mercy
Focused on the cross, Your Son my center
Considering Your perfect decrees, I trust
With reckless abandon Your will I follow

Headstrong, my own will I follow
I marvel at the fragility of faith
Prone to trust in worthless things I cannot trust
On my own it’s too difficult to obey
Worldly possessions, Lord, become my center
I’m lost, alone without Your perfect mercy

I am thankful for Your mercy
Leading me back to the One I must follow
O Lord, You deserve to be my soul’s center
I pray this day I will attain perfect faith
I pray someday I’ll learn to always obey
You have proven, Lord, You are worthy of trust

Correct me when I fail to trust
When I do wrong, but then repent, have mercy
Grant me Your Holy Spirit, then I’ll obey
Fill me with Your perfect grace, then I’ll follow
Remind me You are faithful, then I’ll have faith
Make me desire to keep You as my center

When I follow I learn to trust
Growing faith feeds on Your mercy
You, the Center, help me obey

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God’s Condo

The prompt over at dVerse Poets Pub yesterday was to write a poem inspired by the art of Danny Gregory. I wrote one yesterday based on a sketch of dogs here. Then this morning getting ready for work I had an idea for another one.

(c) Danny Gregory

(c) Danny Gregory

God’s Condo

Some say God just hangs out
in His high-rise condo
not caring about us down here on the ground

Or that He’s dead
maybe never existed at all

But I’ve seen Him
seen His compassion and caring

At Shepherd’s Door
where He lifts up broken women
and sets them on a path of healing

In Haiti
where He lifts up the poor
and gives them an education, goats, clean water, and more

In India
where He calls His people willingly
into danger so they may care for the out caste

In my heart
where He changes me
to be more loving and forgiving

God may have a high-rise condo
but I suspect it’s getting pretty dusty
because He is never there

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Unconditional Love

The prompt over at dVerse Poets Pub today is to write a poem inspired by the art of Danny Gregory. I picked one of Danny’s sketches that appealed to me because it was of dogs. I love dogs!

(c) Danny Gregory

(c) Danny Gregory

Unconditional Love

Love abounds
It can be found
most anywhere you look

But unconditional love
is hard to find
except in the Good Book

and in the wag of a dog’s tail
no matter now long
your quick trip to the store took

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Cardboard Evangelism (Miracles)—A Found Poem

This morning in church we had a visit from a group of men from our local Teen Challenge ministry. The sermon was about how God still performs miracles and these men shared how they are each a miracle. They did so in a very unique way; they called it their cardboard evangelism. Each man walked in front of the congregation with a cardboard sign. On one side they had written who they saw themselves as before they came to Teen Challenge; on the other side they had written who they are now—a miracle of God.

After the service I asked if I could write a found poem based on their cardboard evangelism and they said I could. So with the help of a few of the men I took pictures of the signs so that I could transcribe these miracles into this found poem.

TC Frown TC Smile

Cardboard Evangelism (Miracles)

Walking in a world of darkness
Found the Light in Jesus Christ

Lost cause; No foundation
Redeemed child; New creation

Chained down by addiction
Set free in Christ

Suicidal depressed broken spirit
Miracle Overcomer Healed

Young homeless lost with no hope
Found by Jesus who gave me hope for a better life

Abandoned, Dad was in prison
Found and free through my ultimate Father

Addicted to cutting myself; Hopeless, in pain
Christ bled enough for me. I am healed inside and out

20 years running with the devil
Now . . . running with GOD

Introduced to meth; it was killing me slowly. I hit my rock bottom
Repented to God. Now praying to be faithful

Bitter outcast looking for acceptance in a needle and a spoon
Passionate Jesus freak

Godless dirtbag
Fresh and clean with the Lord

Lost everything to alcohol
Gained everything through Christ

Overwhelmed by darkness
Overcome by Truth

On the street homeless, shooting meth, feeling hopeless
Overcame all with God’s love & forgiveness

Felt misled
Now have purpose

Had everything; wasn’t enough
Have Jesus; more than enough

Lost, broken, and hopeless
Found, healing, and hopeful

Junkie running to the needle every day
Delivered running to my Sword †

Imprisoned by drug addiction
Bailed out by Jesus Christ

Drinking away the past and the hurt
Trusting in Jesus to heal it all

Chasing dope daily, just to get high
Chasing God daily, and lifting Him high

Afraid I could do nothing right
I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!

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The Candle

Forgiveness is a candle burning bright
In it resides both heat and light

Just as one cannot divide the flame
To forgive and let go are one and the same

Forgiving does not mean the offender was right
But means we trust God will win the fight

Though we know who is to blame
We also know our own deep shame

When revenge is what we have in sight
Letting go is beyond our might

But when we trust Jesus is the only name
Great forgiveness we do proclaim

Then our candle burns hot and bright
Love and mercy are our delight

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No Snow

We’ve had no snow this winter
We’ve had no snow at all
I’d say it makes me sad and blue
But I haven’t got the gall

 

A silly poem for the dVerse Poets Pub prompt today. It’s actually the opposite of what we were supposed to write about, which was being snowed under or iced in, but I really dislike cold and winter and am happy that we have had mild weather this year.

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Friends

We are in the middle of a sermon series at church called Faith by the Numbers. We are on number 4, True Friendship, based on the story in Mark 2:1-12 in which the 4 friends lower their paralyzed friend down through the roof to Jesus. During the sermon this poem started to form in my mind. On the theory that it’s better to just write, even if what you write isn’t the best every time, I decided to finish it up and share it here.

Friends

Friends go the distance
When friends are in need

Friends find great blessing
When friends each other feed

Friends trust in Jesus
When friends plant a seed

Friends are friends forever
When friends in Christ are freed

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Standing

Emotions
Massive crashing waves
Fear, anger, jealousy, doubt
I’ll weather this epic storm standing
On the Truth

 

At dVerse Poets Pub Meeting the Bar, Tony Maude has created a new form, the expanded Cinquain. This form has five lines of 3, 5, 7, 9, and 3 syllables, in that order. I had a short poem already written that I hadn’t quite finished. I decided to revise it to fit this form.

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Change

The change in me
when in Christ I believe
should be as noticeable as when
I dye my hair Love Apple Red

 

The prompt at dVerse Poets Pub yesterday was to write a poem about hair, using it as a metaphor or as the topic of the piece. At first nothing came to mind and I had decided to skip the prompt. But then this morning I remembered this post that I wrote some time ago about hair and decided to reduce the gist of that long post to a short poem.

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A New Creation

I’m not a sinner and nothing more
I’m also a saint who Christ restored

I live each day a new creation
The Holy Rock my firm foundation

Though I have sinned, falling short of God’s glory
My life of sin is not the end of the story

I live each day a new creation
Relying on the Spirit to resist temptation

Christ died to redeem a sinner like me
Now I have His sweet victory

I live each day a new creation
Secure and free in my salvation

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