Sunday, May 28, 2017

if i do not stop...

i've often heard it said, "he's on a mission". i suppose the saying has lingered over the years as it's message transcends the boundaries of a specific incident. i know i've used it numerous times myself. as i diligently worked on my "to-do" list today, my mind wandered back to scenes from my youth. before the age of part-time jobs and driving, my weekend social outing consisted of hanging out with the guys in the neighborhood. looking back, i was richly blessed with quite a diverse assemblage of "friends". we would set up our camper in the back yard and Friday night would be spent with marshmallows on a campfire and stories shared till nearly dawn. most of those nights ended with devotions. i didn't realize it then, but for most of the guys, that was the closest they would ever get to church.
some four decades later i wonder where some of the young men ended up on their journey. knowing a few of them have already begun their tenure on the other side of the horizon, i can only pray they reconciled any issues with the conductor before stepping off the train. as for my journey, if you've followed these posts with any regularity, you already know the mercurial atmosphere of my condition...
to close this post, i refer back to another memory from earlier today - a song that stuck in my head from my days as a Nazarene. the words seem fitting as i remember those that remain. each day we wake up is truly a blessing - another chance to share words of hope and forgiveness with others lost along the way. realizing, at some point, putting it off until tomorrow is no longer an option, i choose to embrace each opportunity - never forget - a charge to keep i have...

  1. A charge to keep I have,
    A God to glorify,
    A never-dying soul to save,
    And fit it for the sky.
  2. To serve the present age,
    My calling to fulfill:
    Oh, may it all my pow’rs engage
    To do my Master’s will!
  3. Arm me with jealous care,
    As in Thy sight to live;
    And O Thy servant, Lord, prepare
    A strict account to give!
  4. Help me to watch and pray,
    And on Thyself rely,
    Assured, if I my trust betray,
    I shall forever die.
[A Charge to Keep I Have | Charles Wesley, 1762]
 

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: “If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?” But … the good Samaritan reversed the question: “If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?” — Martin Luther King Jr. [Luke 10: 30-37]

 

this amazing life

this moment -
borrowed,
short -
precious...
it hangs on - briefly;
a breath held in anticipation -
skipped beat of a heart -
first babies cry...

awesome - don't you think -
this journey called life?
it seems so many times -
we get caught up in the - want -
involved in expectation;
preoccupied with - when -
so much that we miss out on the - now...

my - is -
this - moment;
all i need,
and all i'm guaranteed -

you may choose another agenda -
fill your days,
your - moments -
with - what if...

but -i,
i choose - acceptance,
gratitude,
appreciation -

each breath -
each moment -

sweet gift of life -
amazing!

Saturday, May 27, 2017

defined by the space between.

if someone were to ask what punctuation will be used to end the sentence of your life, what would you say? most likely, or perhaps most common response would be a period. simple statement signifying the end. i suppose, those of us with altered perceptions of ourselves might choose exclamation mark. the fireworks at the end of a life lived on the edge. i personally feel compelled to close the book of me with a hyphen. of all the choices available, it seems most fitting. having never traveled past the breakers to where the sky meets the sea, i can only imagine the peace -the serenity. why should i feel this life is merely filler for the space between is, and is not. my conviction leads me to a more profound realization than offered by the simplicity of that assumption. i believe this - living - is prelude for the story of our forever. i cannot justify with signature of complete, the ending of my time with one small insignificant dot.
surely all we do - all we see, and feel - everything we consider - necessary experiences to provide options - alternatives - choices designed to determine the content of our character. and when our train pulls into the station of forever, ultimately guarantees which exit we are allowed... 

"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God." [Romans 12:1,2 (KJV)]




so softly the summer rain falls


when yesterday was today,
surreptitiously culled from could be,
to become,
you and that version-of-the-day me, did interact.
now i find your - is -
no more.
and realizing my inability to continue my journey
with you,
into your was,
makes me pause...
 
how apropos - on such a day as this;
hummingbirds and seraphim's!
and as your you ascends from the tomb of could not,
the universe itself is moved to tears -
so softly the summer rain falls...

Friday, May 26, 2017

the reward is perfect peace...

and then,
without notice,
no pretense,
no consideration of intent - a life altered...
how carelessly we pass our time. indifferent to the implications of our actions - or even perception of our intent. we all too often choose to linger on stage long after the spotlight dims - the curtain falls. in spite of opportunity given to segregate ourselves from conformity, we give away our individuality in an effort to achieve the "status quo".
tonight - while sharing conversation with a soldier - i realized the significance of commitment. in a world determined to be defined by deconstructed definition, reading testimony that spoke with authority to faith reaffirmed my pursuit of peace. and in those few shared moments of solidarity, i understood the significance of acceptance.
amazing - how difficult the endeavor to belong. exhausting ourselves to build temples - monuments extolling our investment - shrines to celebrate our deliberation to become. if only we would take the time to read the words rather than exploit the value of owning the book. while cliche', proclamations of life defined by virtue and foundation of moral fortitude are only believable if supported by tangible existence of conviction -
actions,
really do speak louder than words...


"For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast".[Ephesians 2:8-9]


undeserving

entangled in
my now -
entwined within 
my what-will-be,
you...
an anchor fastened to my heart -
essential as even -
air.

 
what was life before
you -
who drew the line
between indifferent -
and necessary?

 
was there sunlight -
or did the night - so nonchalant
just close his eyes -
allowing day...

 
i cherish moments
filled with oh-so--much of you,
grateful -
yet undeserving...

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

that which does not...

and once again, Wednesday night. stormy weather. rain for days. as i prepare for my journey into tomorrow, i say goodbye to the struggles of my day. loose interpretation - struggle. when measured against the scale of things important, my deficiencies - minuscule. i choose instead to walk away from the threat of accommodation. commiseration - i've never worn well. perhaps passage from one level of self-discovery to another requires learning acceptance. believe me, i've researched the subject and found there is no promise of placidity. nowhere is it written we are justified nor guaranteed ownership of joy. if encountered, it should be considered the greatest blessing. as i turn off the light in this room of reflection, i leave you with one thought - while we may not be able to say what it would take to make us happy, all too familiar we have become with that which does not...

(excerpt from an earlier season...)
 
[Monday, May 9, 2016     stopping by the well of grace...]

"closing the door to the world for a while now so i can regroup, and gather up the thoughts scattered haphazardly across the coastline of my mind. so very close, it seems, we sometimes walk along the shore of unable... how precarious we find ourselves; balanced between what we think we know, and what will never be revealed. just when i think i've made it through the rapids of uncertainty, i find a waterfall ahead. for my friends that are dealing with issues i can never understand, i send support. and even though you may think your darkness never-ending, please know there has never been a midnight not followed by day.
even in the smallest things, there has been devised a master plan. and if our journey keeps us from walking home together, please know if i enter the forever first, i'll hold the door ajar..."
 


in dreams

to venture out past the breakers -
find that water - calm.
float with the tide toward dawn...

to feel the wind against my back.
let the current carry me away.
to greet the sunrise -
face to face.
no fear of retribution -
no remorse for nights demise...

to reach right out -
when one with the horizon -
touch the very face -
of God...

(in dreams i find the paradise
my waking mind can't see.
my open eyes too used to darkness -
my heart too broken - to believe.)