Too Many Voices in his Brain

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Going on a Short Writing Sabbatical

I’m going on a short writing sabbatical,

Even though I know it may sound radical.

But I’ve got stuff to deal with and if I do not,

Then all it will do is stir up the pot

Of things I must juggle. For me, it’s too much,

And though writing can help me, it’s not the best crutch.

So, please understand if I’m not here as often,

My website is not going into a coffin.

But I cannot be here as much as I’d like.

So please understand. This is not about “Mike.”

And I will be back here as much as I can,

Though for now I’ve my hands full, I’ve too much to plan.



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Be of Good Cheer

“My son, I say, be of good cheer. Your sins have been forgiven.”

Oh, what uplifting words to the poor paralyzed man were given!

No more sack cloth or ashes, for God’s strength was found in joy.

God’s grace did not depend upon him being a good boy.

 

His clapping friends above upon the shattered roof were smiling,

The righteous man had seen their faith, though others were reviling.

Their inward thoughts heaped tons of dirt upon the Lord of glory.

What happened next put even more excitement in the story.

 

The startled crowd that stood inside the house began to mumble,

With voices too hushed to be heard, “Our teacher isn’t humble!”

“To think that he can pardon sins! His mind must not be steady.”

Before the words had left their lips, he had his answer ready.

 

“What’s easier? To forgive him or to tell him ‘rise and walk’?”

With confidence and truth, he answered their unspoken talk.

The quiet murmurers drew back in shock. How could this be?

How did he get inside their minds? It came so suddenly!

 

His unexpected “snappy answer” took them by surprise.

They fell off their proverbial chairs and rubbed wide open eyes

To find themselves thrown off their high and mighty babbling tower

As Jesus, with one bold, swift move, made His Word known with power.

 

“Arise, pick up your mat, and go back to your house today,”

He told the man, who saw he had no choice but to obey.

He stood up with a shout, all smiles, jumped up off the floor,

Picked up his mat, sidestepped the cat, and walked straight out the door.

 

To those who say God ruins fun, I beg to disagree.

See how He healed the crippled man and made the blind to see!

For, if the Son shall set you free, you shall be free indeed.

Or must somebody wreck a roof that you might see your need?

 

 

 

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Who Cares What the Bird Thinks?

(Immersing in God’s Word, Part II)

Who cares what the bird thinks when you’re dipping in God’s Word?

Don’t let it snatch the seed of faith that you have recently heard.

Protect your head if you don’t want that bird to snatch the seed.

Stop chasing birds and meditate. On Bible you should feed.

Yes, Jesus said to look at birds, but only to discern

The fact that God provides for them. Yes, look at them and learn

How carefree those little flying creatures seem to be.

God cares for them in every way. How much more you and me?

It doesn’t take an animal rights activist to see

That there are times to leave a bird alone. Yes, let it be.

What the bird thinks doesn’t matter, nor do other people’s views

When you’re reading Jesus’ words (so much better than other news).

 

 

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Medicine for an Insane World, Part II

Rough living under Pharaoh’s whip,

Backbreaking toil in his grip.

To free the people, God sent Moses,

With whom the king would not touch noses.

 

“Allow the Jews a day of rest

Just so that they can have a fest?

You sure do have a lot of nerve!

Hard labor is what they deserve.”

 

“Deliverance I shall not grant,

No matter how you rave and rant.

The lazy bums shall have no peace.

Their burdens I shall now increase.”

 

“They are in bondage to my laws.

To make bricks, they must grasp at straws

But still produce the same amount.

My men shall not reduce the count.”

 

He was a very unfair king

Who left his subjects suffering.

The “go-fers” scattered everywhere

To glean the grain he would not share.

 

So much confusion, panic, fear,

A sad career devoid of cheer.

No matter how well they behaved,

From his wrath they could not be saved.

 

That’s what it’s like when ruled by sin.

You always lose and never win.

To live that way is scatterbrained.

You just exist but aren’t sustained

 

Upon the tread mill you will run,

A life of strife that’s never fun.

One joins the rat race to survive,

Gains worldly goods but doesn’t thrive.

 

That’s why the Father sent His Son

Into the world. His work is done.

Upon a cross, He took our place

And paid for our sins with His grace.

 

They placed his body in a cave.

Within three days He beat the grave.

Death bows to him and so should we,

Because He is our victory.

 

If we believe, then we’ll be saved

No matter how well we’ve behaved.

Do you have battles you can’t win?

Would you escape the yoke of sin?

 

The Lord in His great sovereignty

Says, “All ye weary, follow me.

I’ll keep you safe and set you free.

Let Me be your security.”

 

 

 

 

 

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Afraid to Forgive

Tormented, grieved, forsaken. Oh, what pain he felt inside,

Beset by views of ugly news, from which he could not hide!

He knew he should dismiss past hurts still screaming to avenge

The wrongs that so besieged his heart, but he desired revenge.

 

“It’s closure I must have,” he said. “That is the path to peace.

For only then can I enjoy the fruit of sweet release,

And satisfy the anger which has locked me in this cage.

To free myself from prison, I must first appease my rage.”

 

Such thoughts, like sharp two-edged swords, clashed wildly inside his mind;

Chaotic clangs, with violence tinged, set to a beat unkind.

He did not see the torturers whose pitchforks, dipped in fire,

Stirred coals of shame inside his heart to magnify his ire.

 

“It’s not your fault,” they told him, “for the way they treated you.”

“Your hatred’s justified. Those were such awful things to do!”

But still the guilt kept hounding. He could not escape the blame.

“You too have sinned horrifically, and ridiculed God’s name.”

 

Fear gripped his heart with condemnation he could not ignore.

If God was mad at him, then there was nothing to live for.

He knew he must forgive and must forget but was afraid

That he’d get stolen from again and never be repaid.

 

He didn’t trust the sovereign Lord to care for all his needs,

But bought the lie that debt forgiveness rests upon good deeds,

He said, “I’m doomed to earn my bread by my own toil and sweat,

Let him who owes me foot the bill. Let him repay the debt.”

 

But what a yoke to put upon an ordinary man!

He knew it wasn’t right, and yet he had no better plan.

His blood pressure was through the roof, he wasn’t feeling well.

Then suddenly a light shone in the darkness of his cell.

 

The Son of God was standing there. His glory filled the room.

“I paid your debt in full,” He said. “Why all this gloom and doom?”

“I thought you were a hard man, Sir,” replied the man, amazed.

“I thought I must fend for myself, for that’s how I was raised.”

 

“But now I see it isn’t so. There’s no cause for alarm.

For, though you’re greatly to be feared, you’d never do me harm.”

“That’s right,” said Jesus. “All I ask of you is to believe,

In my unfailing goodness trust, and of my grace receive.”

 

“Remember how I shed my blood to wash away your sin.

In me, there’s life. In man, there’s death. Stick with me and you’ll win.”

“Why ask a man to pay you back for all the things he stole,

When, by my stripes, you can be healed?  For I will make you whole.”

 

And the moral of this poem is that forgiveness involves trusting God to pay back what the enemy stole from you, instead of demanding that some fallible human being supply your need. Yes, God can use people to provide for you, but they’re just tools in His hands. Our trust must be in Him, for He alone is faithful to the end.

 

 

Continue reading “Afraid to Forgive”

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Killjoys

Once upon a time there was a boy named Roy. He liked to read his Bible, especially stories about Jesus and the miracles he did. He read it like a child and believed every word. One day he was sitting under a tree, reading the passage in John where Jesus said, “He who believes in me will do the same things I do, and greater things.” Roy got all excited.

“Maybe God could use me to heal people too,” he said excitedly. “I could even open blind eyes, and raise the dead.” There seemed to be no limit to the miracles God could do through him if he believed.

Unknown to Roy, two men in black suits were standing by a fence nearby, listening to him talk and plotting. They sneaked up on him with a balloon and popped it in his face.

Roy was so startled, he dropped his Bible. “What’s going on?” he said.

“You’re taking the Bible too literally,” they replied. “God doesn’t do miracles anymore, so stop acting like a fanatic before we really make you jump.”

“How? With more balloons?” asked Roy, shocked beyond belief.

“No, but as God’s thought police, we’re here to correct you,” said the first man. “God frowns on having fun, you know. To follow Christ, you must take up your cross.”

“You mean, like, ‘Nose to the grindstone’?” asked Roy.

“Yes, you have to strain your brain to do God’s will,” said the second man. “Don’t expect to be suddenly empowered by some unknown tongue or prophecy from above. God dispensed with things like that a long time ago. Today He’s given us much more mysterious ways to His will, through mind-boggling inventions such as television, telephones and the Internet.”

“Raw human intellect is His current tool for reaching the masses,” added the first man. “He doesn’t need to use signs and wonders anymore.”

Roy hung his head. He felt as if the rug had been pulled out from under him. To think that God didn’t do miracles anymore made him so depressed, he stopped reading his Bible. Soon he found himself attending the balloon poppers’ church, which had many rules for pleasing God. You had to dress a certain way, talk a certain way, and if they happened to stop by your house you had to entertain them while they inspected every room. Any hint of dust or clutter earned you a sharp rebuke. Strict obedience to one’s “shepherd” was required. Any hint of rebellion was a sign that you weren’t saved. To “honor those who reign over you in the LORD” was the main law. To attend a different kind of church was to be branded a heretic, and to promote the free exercise of spiritual gifts earned you the title of “false prophet.”

That was why Roy was so afraid to leave the church. He feared that if he did, he’d go to hell, but he couldn’t stand to stay because the regulations were killing him. Then he remembered a book he’d read one time about praising God amid the worst of circumstances. Desperate to reconnect with God, he began to do just that. As he was searching for things to rejoice over, he happened to find his Bible. He opened it up and found himself staring at the passage in Matthew 7:15, which warns believers to beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing, “but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.”

The next verse said, “You will know them by their fruits” (meaning the results of their teaching). Roy cross-referenced that verse with the passage in Galatians 5:19-22, which compares the works of the flesh to the works of the Spirit.

According to verse 22, the fruit of the Holy Spirit is “love, peace, and joy.”

Roy realized he hadn’t experienced much love, joy, or peace in a very long time. All he felt in his church was fear, but Jesus promised comfort to his followers through Holy Spirit whom He said would teach them “all things.” (John 14:26).

The fruit of his church’s teaching, which was that spiritual gifts were no longer relevant, had made Roy very sad, but he knew God didn’t want him to be sad.

“These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full,” Jesus told his disciples in John 15:11.

To the lukewarm church in Revelation 3:14-21, Jesus said in verse 20, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hears my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.”

In other words, it was all about having a personal relationship with Him, not about obeying man. Roy also read the scripture in Hebrews 13:8, which says that Jesus Christ “is the same yesterday, and today and forever.”

If so, then He hadn’t changed His mind when it came to doing miracles, Roy decided.

His original disciples took Jesus at His Word and bore good fruit. The wonders they did in His name caused many people to be saved.

“That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” (I Corinthians 2:5)

The moral of this story is that, when in doubt about any sort of teaching or statement, you should examine it in light of God’s word and look at the results (fruit) of it. For example, if you have been taught that God doesn’t do signs and wonders anymore, then ask yourself what has been the result of that teaching in your own life. For many of us, such teaching has been extremely discouraging, but when we discovered that God still does those things our faith was built up and our confidence in Him was restored.

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Oh, Be!

When Jesus says “Obey,” I hear “Oh, be,”

As in, “Behold the lamb, Abide in Me.”

“Sit in my presence. There, my child, you’ll see

What all I have designed for you to be.”

 

“It’s not about your own ability,

But finding your identity in Me.

To walk by grace requires humility.

To do God’s will means to believe in Me,”

 

“So listen to my voice, know I am He,

And lay your will down voluntarily.

For many busy buzzing bees there be,

But rare the heart whose eyes stay fixed on Me.”

 

“Submitting your desires unto Me

Is THE best way to find security,

To break the chains of strife, I hold the key.

God’s only Son will gladly set you free.”

 

 

 

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Sickness: a Crutch, not a Cross

I don’t know about you, but it’s easier for me to serve Jesus when I’m well. When I’m sick, depressed, or down-in-the-dumps, I don’t have energy to do anything for Him. Contrary to what some may teach, sickness is not a cross. At least, it was never my cross. It was my crutch. Much as I hated being sick, I loved the sympathy. When I was sick, no one expected me to be strong or do exploits. They expected me to take my meds and rest in bed.

When I was in first grade, I was very short and very shy. The teachers were mean and school was traumatic. I hated it so much, I would use any excuse to avoid going. Sickness was a great excuse. I got sick to protect myself, not to glorify God.

That’s why, when I see people equate “suffering with Christ” to being sick, it makes me want to gag. It certainly wasn’t the case with me. Besides, it isn’t Biblical. The lame man healed in Acts chapter 3 is a case in point. The way he walked and leapt and praised God drew an awesome crowd. Then Peter gave a sermon and about five thousand men get saved. Was it “suffering for God by being sick” that persuaded them to trust in Jesus? No, it was a miracle, done in Jesus’ name. Did it involve suffering? Well, any time you tell someone they’re healed in Jesus’ name, you take the risk of being wrong. To do it, I’m sure Peter and John had to die to themselves. Peter had to “take up his cross” by yielding to the Holy Spirit, who gave him words to speak to heal the crippled man. Afterwards, they both suffered persecution for preaching through Jesus the resurrection of the dead.

There are many instances throughout the book of Acts where the apostles and those associated with them suffered persecution for the Word. After all, not everybody likes a healing, or any other type of miracle for that matter. Those sorts of things are too convicting. They get people saved.

Once I began to grasp the truth about God’s healing power, I stopped getting sick so much. When it comes to believing God, I’m making progress. Granted, I don’t always have perfect faith for healing. But I know that when the perfect comes – the “perfect” being Jesus when He comes back for his church – that what is imperfect will pass away, for He makes all things new.

Fearing Death

Fearing death unseen,

Just like a leper in quarantine,

He sits alone, bound in chagrin,

While his unhappy world caves in…

Due to heartache and tied to shame,

Because he can’t get past the blame.

For, unfortunately, he wandered

Which explains the way he squandered,

Due to ravenous lust driven,

All the money he was given.

Because he dreads the quarantine,

But – even more — fears death unseen,

He sits alone, bound in chagrin,

While his unhappy world caves in.

The clock’s unnerving ticks and tocks

Cause him to cry out, “Shield me, rocks!

Protect me from the sudden shocks

That come with perilous hard knocks.”

Like a leper in quarantine,

Fearing death unseen,

He sits alone, bound in chagrin,

While his unhappy world caves in.

And so he makes the rocks his god,

Escape that clamors to be shod

In his own blood. “Steal, lie and kill,

A captive to addiction’s will.”

Like a leper in quarantine,

Fearing death unseen,

He sits alone, bound in chagrin,

While his unhappy world caves in.

Why spend gold on crushed rocks

To inhale a false cloud?

“I will be what I will be,”

He declares in ecstasy.

Like a leper in quarantine,

In fear of death unseen,

He sits alone, bound in chagrin,

While his happy world caves in.

Pride borne of useless fantasy,

However, leads to poverty.

But euphoria breeds disease.

This task master he cannot please.

Like a leper in quarantine,

In fear of death unseen,

Alone he sits, bound in chagrin,

Because his world is caving in.

When the smoke lifts, though, he sees

The one to whom he bent his knees

Bowing at the feet of Jesus,

Who gave His life to save us.

Once a leper in quarantine,

Fearing death unseen,

He sits alone, bound in chagrin.

His world, you see, was caving in.

But now at last he yields his life

To the one who calms all strife

And makes his sorrows cease

By offering a sweet release.

Because no shame lurks, he can win.

Therefore, he has no more chagrin,

Because the stone rolled from Christ’s grave

Declares how He came to save

No longer bound to ticks or tocks,

The man has found a better rock

Which can protect him from the shock

Of withdrawal he must endure,

Because God’s love for him is sure.

Heartless Solutions Can Lead to Isolation

Heartless solutions can lead to isolation.

Why then do we tend to have so little hesitation

In offering our best advice without reaching the heart.

Is it all about our pride, about how great “we art”?

“We gave her some solutions that we knew were a sure bet.

So, why is she depressed, they wondered? Why is she upset?

We want to solve her problems, help her turn her life around,

But she shunned our great ideas and called our advice unsound.”

Perhaps they didn’t understand her need for real compassion,

That no heartless solutions could bring her true satisfaction

Because they never spoke to issues that concerned her heart.

All they seemed to want was, their opinions to impart

But she grew weary of their heartless views and sayings trite,

Possessing no desire for yet one more unsound sound bite.

Before she dared accept their great advice, she had to know

That these folks cared about her heart – not just where she should go.

“Just listen to me,” she would plead. But no one wanted to.

That left her feeling isolated, nothing more to do.

Their inability to hear her voice made her withdraw,

Because they seemed so set on pointing out her every flaw

Instead of showing thankfulness for good things she had done.

How hard was it for them to see the victories she’d won?

Most of us can use at least a little validation,

Because without such cheer we can remain in isolation.

The point is that heartless solutions don’t do anybody any good

Even though our best intentions tell us that they should.

Yet without love, I’m just a clashing cymbal, clanging gong.

I do believe I’m doing right when I’m entirely wrong.

“Love one another” Jesus told his disciples. So maybe we should pray more before offering solutions, because only God has the perfect love we need to give to others.

It’s Pride Month and I am Proud of the Humble Man

During this Pride Month I am most proud of Jesus Christ, the humble man whose awesome work in me has totally transformed my life. I honesty didn’t know who I was until I really got to know Him and understand His grace. Perhaps you too can relate.

Yes, I grew up in church where I saw pride as a bad thing. And I still believe it’s not good to be proud of yourself – at least, not in an arrogant way. For as the scriptures say, God gives grace to the humble. With the humble there is wisdom. But what is true humility? Is it beating one’s self up or putting one’s self down. Is it saying, “Yeah, I know. I’m worthless. Why would anyone care about me?!!”?

For those who haven’t read the Bible, as well as for those who have, Moses is said to have written the first five books. And for what it’s worth, Moses called himself “the most humble man on earth.” (Numbers 12:3) Now, that doesn’t sound like a very humble statement, at least not in the sense that most people see humility. But there is a quote that someone wrote (I’m not sure who), and it states that “Humility is not thinking of yourself less but thinking less of yourself.” Moses was a man who thought more of God than probably anybody of his time. Whenever he had a problem with the million-plus crowd he had to lead, he looked to God for help.

And think of all the protesters Moses had to deal with. It seems all they ever did sometimes was complain.

Moses was indeed probably the most humble person of his time compared to others, but Jesus Christ showed even more humility. “Who, being in the form of God” became a man. And as a man, he “humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

Seeing Christ on Tree Despised Plucks Logs From Blind Men’s Eyes

He did this to save ordinary people like me from death and bring us to God. That’s why, during this Pride month I am very proud of Him.

Have You Been Overwhelmed By Bad Reports?

Have you been overwhelmed by bad reports

Or dismayed by news of horrible aborts?

If so, you’re not alone. For the Israelites couldn’t enter

The promised land. That’s because many a venter

    (i.e. “I need to vent!”),

As in “those who spied the land out”, just saw giants.

You know – gangs of fierce, un-wieldly “self-reliants”

Who, it seems, looked on them with disdain,

Prompting them to sing this sad refrain:

“We look like grasshoppers to such big guys,

To whom we can’t compare in might or size.

Though Caleb may command faith to arise,  

We cannot climb above such mighty lies.”

(Our forms, you know, they truly do despise)

“Their bad reports are too much to endure,

Bombarding us with thoughts that are impure

And that hit us in the face like pizza pie.

However, when that pizza hits your eye,

You know it’s not AMORE but Amor-ITES,

The guys that have a knack for un-sound bites.

What’s more, they proudly fuss about wrong ‘rights,’

Just like Hittites, Jebusites and Canaanites.”

(And we’re not talking “knight in shining armor” knights)

And so, the men were overwhelmed by bad reports.

Dismayed by news of possible aborts,

Which tempted them severely to give up

Because they tasted of the bitter cup

That’s mixed with too much doubt to trust God’s Word,

Despite the mighty signs they’d seen and heard –

Such as manna rained upon them from above.

And yet they dared to question God’s great love.

Because they lacked the faith to enter in

To the land God had prepared for them,

He told them not to go. And yet they went.

Sadly, Moses couldn’t get them to relent.

Thus it ended in disaster: soldiers killed

Because they did not do as God had willed

But trusted in their own strength so unjust.

In fact, God knew they lacked the needed trust

To win the battle. Guilt had such a grip

Upon their hearts, it caused their feet to slip.     

But it’s not wise on one’s own flesh to rely,

Regardless of the saying “Do or die.”

  Yet God invites the weary soul to buy. . .

  The food which we can eat and never die. . .

With songs of praise to overwhelm a bad report

So that no one in their right mind will fall short.

Therefore, thank God for His promises each day,

Because Jesus helps us listen and obey.

Due to the fact that He listened diligently,

He has the power to help us hear clearly

So that finally, we too can understand

The awesome things that God for us has planned.

(Based on the story in Numbers chapters 13 and 14)

Relevant scriptures: Isaiah 55:1-3, Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4 (God’s Word: our food), Psalm 7:17, Psalm 8:2 (Psalm 32:7 (songs of deliverance),

Christ’s Eyes Were Blindfolded That We Might See


A foolish man has eyes that remain blind to truth that frees.

He can’t fulfill his calling, for it’s based on what he sees.

But Jesus taught us we must live by faith and not by sight,

Because appearances deceive. They do not always show what’s right.

Samson, for example, had a destiny from God.

The Holy Spirit worked through him although the man was flawed.

He helped deliver Israel from the Philistine’s evil rule.

Because Philistines had giants and ran an iron-fisted school.

Through this man, Samson, however, God brought great victory.

He gave the man great strength. Yet Samson acted foolishly,

By allowing his own eyes’ lust to lead him into temptation.

In falling for Delilah, it seems he had no hesitation.

Because she ruled his life by nagging every single day,

So that the source of his great strength eventually gave way.

Thus the man who once was Spirit-empowered became blind-sided,

Because no one could heal his vision once he had been blinded.

The one he lusted after ended up betraying him.

That’s how he got attacked, and his vision became dim.

Oh, how the enemy works to blind the vessels God does choose

To free His captive people and to offer them good news!

Unfortunately, everyone in this world is born blind,

Yet there is hope for us because we have a God that’s kind.

He sent His Son, far greater than Samson, to bring us liberty.

Despite our own eyes’ lust. Jesus came to set us free.

For on the night of His betrayal, Jesus was denied,

And not a single follower of His stood at His side.

They found a dirty cloth and wound it tightly around his eyes,

Like a stripe to blind the one whose words they did despise

This man did nothing wrong, yet he was buffeted and bruised,

In darkness told to prophesy. “A liar!” they accused.

To say He felt the pain of our shame is to put it lightly,

As He, God-in-the-flesh, atoned for our sins so unsightly,

So that when we feel the mockery that springs from our own sin,

We might be healed by every insult that was placed on him

And see how much the Father loves us, healing each delusion

Can Jesus heal blind eyes? Of course! For He felt our confusion!  

We All Prefer Addiction to Affliction

Nobody likes affliction, we all prefer addiction.

But in the end, who wins? We end up paying for our sins.

The constant dereliction that oozes from addiction

Exacts a terrible toll on the afflicted soul.

Addiction injures others too – and more than just a few,

Although we claim it isn’t true. And yet the guilt we rue.

We don’t wish to confess lest people in our lives think less

Of us and trample our self-worth so that we rue our day of birth.

You say you can’t take any more because you’re tired of the war,

Temptation you could not ignore has left you feeling battle-sore.

But entering God’s rest requires heeding His behest

To run to Jesus when you’re tired because HE knows how you’re wired.

He felt the thorns of your affliction as he paid for your addiction,

And knows the mind games in your head that have been filling you with dread.

Upon his back he bore the weight of your unwieldy staggering gait

For like a sheep you’ve gone astray. He felt your sin in every way

And He has paid the penalty with grace poured out so full and free,

Redeeming you from your addiction. Although withdrawal brings affliction,

With humility comes grace as Jesus takes His rightful place.

Humbly admit you have a need for which your Savior dared to bleed.

Let others love you through the pain that you’re too battered to explain,

Because in Jesus there’s no shame. Believe the power of His name

To rescue you from your addiction which seems more fun than affliction,

But in the end it bites much worse. Let Jesus free you from that curse!

No matter how great the extent of your “unsolvable” addiction,

It can be cured through Christ who understands all your affliction.


Success Amid Stress Comes From Knowing You’re Blessed























Jesus Christ Will Soon Return; Let This Word Sink In

Jesus Christ will soon return.  

Let this Word now sink in.

For it’s been a hard time with some things,

I have taken it “on the chin.”

And yes, there have been days

When I believed I’d never win;

So many trials and tribulations

In a world that’s filled with sin.

The doubts seemed to take over,

Faith stuck in sinking sand,

Still wading through this trial,

On Christ the solid rock I stand.

The scriptures give me comfort,

They are my source of hope

Especially when I feel like I’m hanging

On the short end of a rope.

The cliff lies straight beneath me

But the Lord will lift me up.

He is my manna, my reward.

Behold the bread, the cup.

I overcome by Jesus’ blood

And by my testimony.

Trust Him to come through each time.

His words are never phony.

Though weeping may last for a night,

Joy comes after mourning.

We must prepare for Christ’s return,

Which will come without warning.

Now is the time to heed the warning.

The Heart That Won’t Pretend May Mend

The heart that won’t pretend may mend, but when will mourning end?

Everybody in the world needs a good friend.

If we want to heal, we must be real and learn to feel.

But when others cry or laugh, what message does it send?

The heart that won’t pretend may mend. Have you a hand to lend?

For reality bites, though it does produce insights,

And through pain we may be set free,

Even though we fear it may last an eternity.

A flood of emotions pours into the sea

Of this broken earth in all gravity.

Some chase after strife to give them life,

But such running ends in bitterness, distress.

“By Jesus’ stripes we are healed”

Is not a platitude or simple attitude.

Our griefs He bore, so let us not ignore.

Life in His blood has power to heal,

The question is: Can you feel?

Seeds of faith that fall on rocks

Bear no fruit in the end.

For the heart that does not pretend

Eventually may mend.

But woe to the one who rejects a true friend.

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My Husband Loves My Latest Post

My husband loves my latest post. I am so happy to hear that. He loves the rhymes, especially the part about “Mike”! Now that’s the kind of review I can always go for! Soon I think I will start writing more again.

To me this goes to show that, contrary to some writing advice, what friends and family say about a writer’s work DOES matter. When my husband likes my work, it means the world to me!

If you’ve ever done any writing – with the idea of being published – then you will quickly come to realize that writing can’t be done in a vacuum. Every writer needs support from someone, preferably those closest to them. Even non-writers need support. We like to feel like we are heard. So when someone shares an idea with you, even if it’s off the wall, taking the time to listen and encourage them can work wonders.

True, that doesn’t translate into automatic success. But it can encourage a person not to give up, that with excellent coaching and perseverance the battle can be won. If you want to do well as an author, then share your work with someone. Put it out there. See what works.

If you keep going, you will get somewhere. But don’t forget to pray, because God is our greatest source of encouragement. Jesus said in John chapter 15 that “Without Me, you can do nothing.” He also told his followers to love one another, and encouragement is a form of love.

Readers feel free to weigh in. When your spouse (or other family member) believes in your writing, does it or does it not inspire you to persevere?

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