Thank You For Not Trying to Change This Tree

Thank you, peeps for not trying to change this little tree,

Because it was created with originality.

Thanks for accepting it the way that God meant it to be –

Because, you see, it has been put together carefully.

 

This tree did not amount to much until somebody hung

Some ornaments to highlight its green branches so far flung.

They’re reaching out in hopes that they might get a little lift

From presents down below, as each supporter gives a gift.

 

We do not need to change this tree, but help each drooping branch

By recognizing what it’s worth. Let’s give this tree a chance,

Through waters of encouragement, with bells to make it sing

And – wrapped around its little trunk – a joyful covering.

 

For, you can’t really change a tree, but you can give it care

And if you nurture it, who know what beauty it will share?

It may not fit your concept of what you think it should be.

Perhaps it will not hold big ornaments reliably.

 

But if it fills the purpose for which God chose it to be,

Then who are we to treat its branches superficially?

Because, like trees, we all fall short and we don’t always see

That God accepts us as we are but wants to set us free

 

Of wrongs we’ve done to damage one another’s destiny.

He wants to change those hurts into a bright reality.

And I believe He wants to do it supernaturally.

So, let’s thank Him for grace instead of trying to fix that tree

 

Because it’s kind of like a peep in that you tend to get

The good you give to it and the example that you set.

So, thank you, peeps, for trying not to change this little tree

Because to help it may involve some creativity.

Once Upon a Rooftop: Four Men and a Mat

When You’re Born Different: Identity Crisis

I. When You’re Born Different

When you’re born different, people look at you funny – like you’ll never measure up to their perfect standards. I should know. From a young age I struggled with self-worth. At school I had to wear a “pirate’s” patch to correct my lazy eye and plates in my shoes to help flat feet develop arches. Shorter than most of my peers, I had a painful shyness that kept me from telling the so-called “beautician” not to crop my locks to match my height. No other girl in my kindergarten class had a pixie cut. I hated that boyish look and the way my teachers tried to fix me.

“Why don’t you keep a tidy desk like other girls?” they asked.

“What TV programs keep you from getting your homework done?”

“Don’t be afraid. I won’t bite. Why won’t you talk?”

Maybe I clammed up because I felt so messed up inside – identity crisis city. My hair could not grow fast enough to hide the shame I felt. Why didn’t this late bloomer fit in with everybody else? I tried to please them but all I got was frustration. That’s where all this garbled chicken scratch came from: multiple ideas bottled up inside, exploding like warm soda once the cork is popped. Piles of unorganized papers strewn everywhere litter my office space. This makes no sense.

CRINKLE, RIP, SHRED!

II. Identity Crises Caused By Peer Pressure

Tears roll down my cheeks as hours of exhaustive research get flushed down the drain. At least, that’s how it feels sometimes. But perhaps I can salvage this mess. Meanwhile, this is what it feels like:

Pearls before swine. Fruit rotting on the vine plops into a sinkhole for creativity. What a waste of time and ink and trees! Identity crisis. Who am I? Help!

Living to meet others’ expectations is like the Israelites gathering stubble to make bricks. It doesn’t blunt the crack of Pharaoh’s whip. After you’ve been under it a while, you start to wonder, “Who am I anymore?”

Aaron tried to please people, and look what happened. Caving to peer pressure, he cast aside faith more precious than gold in favor or worldly gold. He took wealth plundered from Egyptians – God’s favor so richly poured out on His people – and from it formed a killer calf which caused three thousand deaths – all because they had their eyes fixed on absent Moses. Tired of waiting for his promised return, they sought an excuse to reconnect with old bondages.

Like Esau, they squandered their birthright on temporary feel-good pleasures. Then there’s Samson who was born different – meaning, he had a special purpose. Yet he yielded to Delilah’s badgering. Close-up and personal peer pressure foisted upon him an identity crisis of major proportions.

Snip, snip! There went his locks.

Back to the hair thing again.

I wear it the way I want to know, rather than how others want it styled.

III. Free to Be Different

Because I’m different. I don’t need to wear my hair the way they say I should. Instead of giving in to others, I’ll fight to keep it long. I’m not changing it to fit their mold, or other aspects of my personal appearance for that matter. And when it comes to personality, I’m free to be myself – which means, I’ll gladly be the person God wants me to be. Because that’s what’s it’s all about for the Bible believer – believing who God says you are in Christ.

“For if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. All things have become new.” (II Corinthians 5:17)

So, don’t let your identity crisis define you.

I pray that this article blesses someone.

https://atomic-temporary-102676306.wpcomstaging.com/poetry/afraid-to-forgive/

God’s Creative Anesthetic Produces Miracles

Creative Anesthetic: the original “While You Were Sleeping” Saga

 

Creative Anesthetic,

A painless surgery,

Miraculous results,

God did it supernaturally.

 

The name of the creative anesthetic: “Rest in Me.”

 

God hid the work from Adam

So he didn’t have a clue,

Because

For him to help with this creative work

Just wouldn’t do.

 

For him to get a miracle

Required a deep sleep,

– And (I might add) –

The surgery that God performed

Went off without a bleep.

 

No scanners or heart monitors,

No medical device,

Or man-made things were needed.

God required no advice.

 

All He needed was for Adam to lie down and not think twice.

 

For if he’d been awake,

He surely would have messed things up.

“What are you doing to me, God?

I’m feeling swallowed up.”

 

“I need that rib. Don’t take it!

What? You call those ‘brush strokes’ art?

I don’t like how you’re shaping it.

I want to have a part.”

 

“What are you doing to her face?

I think she should have wings.

I’m hurting from this cut you made

And all the pain it brings.”

 

God didn’t want the man to worry ‘bout those sorts of things.

 

So He used His anesthetic

To eliminated the grief.

For when you’re mind’s not racing,

There’s no room for unbelief.

 

Before then, man was lonely.

For him, no helper could be found.

Although he checked each animal,

Searching all around.

 

“I’m looking for a miracle.

Oh, God, how can it be?

I’m feeling so alone in this.

Is there no help for me?”

 

Before he learned to walk in faith, He needed certainty –

 

An answer that mere flesh and blood had no strength to reveal,

But in the “deep sleep” of God’s rest we find the power to heal.

It isn’t our own sweat and blood that gets us to that place,

But faith in Jesus’ finished work and awesome gift of grace.

 

Scriptures: Genesis 2:18-22, Hebrews 4:9-10, Ephesians 2:4-10; Romans 10:9

 

 

 

Faith’s Journey: From Seed to Shoot to Fruit

I. From Seed to Shoot to Fruit

Faith starts out as a seed that stretches to become a shoot.

That shoot is destined to eventually develop fruit.

 

Along the way faith learns to speak. It shall not remain mute,

Provided it receives good care and doesn’t “get the boot.”

 

Sometimes when Jesus puts a seed of faith in someone’s hand,

That person sees hard ground and simply cannot understand

 

How best to help that seed grow up into a miracle.

Faith is a substance which contains amazing potential

 

But if you wrap it up in rags of your own righteousness

Then you will surely find yourself engulfed by fierce distress.

 

For, like a buried talent, that poor seed of faith can’t grow

Through your own sin-stained toil. You must let God help you sow

 

The faith that works through love, made possible through his shed blood,

A perfect sacrifice for sin. Receive the cleansing flood!

 

Remember: Those who grew their talents did it through a trade,

Replacing their despair with joy for which their Savior paid.

 

His grace given so freely is the soil that will nourish.

Through the power of His Spirit, He enables faith to flourish.

II. Faith Produces Fruit Through Love

“For verily I say unto you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”

Miracles are a fruit of faith, but faith starts as a seed. The important thing here, however, isn’t the seed itself. It’s the  soil in which the seed is planted.

“But that (seed, of faith) on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.” – Luke 8:15

So then, must we strain to bring forth fruit?

“Faith . . . works by love.” – Galatians 5:6

“God is love.” – I John 4:8

“Love (charity). . . believes all things. . .” – I Corinthians 13:1-7

“I (Jesus) am the vine, you are the branches: He that abides in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing.”

“Looking to Jesus,  the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” – Hebrews 12:2

“You shall know them by their fruits.” – Matthew 7:16

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” – John 3:16

 

 

 

 

Mustard Seeds of Multiple Ideas: Book Blogging

I. Mustard Seeds of Inspiration Lie All Around

 

Mustard seeds of inspiration lie all around,

Which in your search for insight you have suddenly found.

But is the knowledge tree they’ve formed too much for you?

Because there’s good and maybe evil in it too.

 

Despite the saying, “He who hesitates is lost,”

To publish involves counting up the cost.

What is the wisest way to use each word?

Without the Lord, your focus will get blurred.

 

When many mustard seeds of faith bombard your mind,

Do you have strength to type them in one at a time?

Or do they seem to lack all reason and all rhyme?

The sorting process does not feel sublime.

 

You feel impressed to type them right away,

But as you do, why not close your eyes and pray?

Ask God for wisdom, let Him show you how,

Instead of sowing those mustard seeds “right here, right now.”

 

II. So Many Mustard Seeds of Faith

So many mustard seeds of faith spring up,

But which ideas go inside each cup

Of the tale you have such fervency to share?

Does each idea belong? If so, then where?

 

You wish you knew where each idea should go,

But sorting through ideas can be slow.

Plus, if they clash, they’re sure to rock the flow,

And who wants to get caught in the undertow?

 

For the author who would not remain obscure,

It helps to have a writing stream that’s pure

And doesn’t feel like rapids hitting rocks

With spray that blinds your eyes and soaks you socks.

(It’s like a quake. You feel the aftershocks)

 

For seeds of thoughts that make your mountain move

Can also make you trip and lose your groove

Unless they’re forged with wisdom from above,

Tried in the fire of God’s perfect love.

 

And though book passion may be easy to ignite,

A novel may take many weeks to write,

But if learning to discern is your delight,

Then God will surely help you win the fight.

 

Cry out for wisdom, cry out for knowledge, cry out to Jesus.

 

https://atomic-temporary-102676306.wpcomstaging.com/healing/tree-life-knowledge-good-evil/