Too Many Voices in his Brain

Starve Out the Spirit of Death

Starve out the spirit of death.

Don’t give it any glory.

Focus not on tragedy

But on the gospel story.

Easier said than done sometimes,

But joy comes after mourning,

Although we know it takes a while

When grief strikes without warning.

Because so many questions: “Why?”

Wage war against belief,

And when folks offer platitudes

It magnifies the grief.

However, when Jesus was born,

Angels proclaimed His glory.

They starved the spirit of death

By dwelling on the gospel story.

“Joy to the world” they sang,

Prompting the shepherds to rejoice.

Then later in the temple,

There were just two who raised their voice.

Two prophets, Simeon and Anna,

Recognized and spoke of Him

Right under Herod’s nose

When Christ was in Jerusalem.

Then wise men came and brought their gifts,

But Herod was distressed.

His life was soaked in tragedy.

He wanted to be blessed.

No king would rule over him.

This babe was going down!

God warned Joseph, who fled with him,

Escaping his hometown.

But Bethlehem knew tragedy.

It was a sorry day:

Rachel weeping for her children,

Grief that wouldn’t go away.

And yes, there is a time to mourn,

As when Jesus died,

Our sins to nail upon a cross.

Behold His bleeding side!  

He died to set us free,

But He was also resurrected.

For joy He did endure the cross

Though nobody suspected

That he could really do that.

Yet it happened. Can you see?

Amid your tragedy, can you

Behold His victory?

Though you might have to sing through tears,

Just aching to survive,

By praising Him you give the

spirit of death No room to thrive.

Consider Him who reigns on high

And wields the two-edged sword,

Proclaiming “Starve the spirit of death

And magnify the Lord!”

Through the Valley, Not Much to Say

I’m going through the valley now and don’t have much to say, after trying for so very long to just obey. So much I tried, but no success. I didn’t understand. Everywhere I looked I seemed to see a reprimand. The trials have been torturous, I’m trying to look up. I’ve stared death in the face now and I’ve drunk the bitter cup.

All I really want is to reconnect with God. Everything else is window dressing.

Who cares about popularity or hitting that top spot? It seems to be way overrated. So much uncertainty with the plot.

I had so much to share, but few people seemed to care. But God used my loneliness to lead me to more prayer. How hard must be this valley for people in despair! Now that I have entered it, I have found you there.

You weren’t supposed to be here, confused about your calling, wondering what you’re meant to do, feeling like you’re falling. I was the one who felt as if she had failed to connect with friends and family, but I never did suspect

What happened just this week. It came so sudden, a low blow. When you, my friend, lost everything, I knew that I must go and stay right with you where you were to share the bitter cup.  This simply wasn’t fair to you, why must you drink this up?

I’m the valley with you now and haven’t much to say. I know that we both know It wasn’t supposed to happen this way. But I’m glad I can be here for you right to the very end, because I care about you. On this earth, you’re my best friend. 

I’m in this valley with you. You don’t have to walk alone, as we both seek our Lord Jesus who sits on the throne. Though happier days lie ahead, right now we live in grief. So let’s help one another overcome our belief.


By His Stripes I’m Healed: What This Means to Me


By His Stripes I’m Healed: What This Means to Me

“By His stripes I’m healed” means so much to me, For I am the one who caused His injury, bruising Him for how I’ve hurt myself and others; Failing to do good; revenge I took on brothers; Idle words I’ve spoken, idols I have built, So easily offended, Crunched by sin and guilt. With my own needs consumed, rarely giving glory To the author of this awesome Christmas story.

By His stripes I am healed.


Sin parted me from God, for I was so hateful, At war with my own self, rarely acting grateful. But the Father sent His only Son for me. Men jabbed His head with thorns, whipped His back savagely. Nails pierced His hands and feet. That’s how He broke the wall Of hostility dividing me from God. Blood poured from His wounds to give me liberty. As I drink it in, He enables me to see

In those blessed stripes, God reveals His will for me.


My life is in His blood, which shields me from God’s wrath, For, like a sheep I’ve strayed but He makes straight my path. Abel’s blood cried “Vengeance. Justice must be done.” But Jesus’ blood declares “The battle has been won.” He bore my punishment to bring me victory. So now, when anger comes, it needn’t rest on me. No longer must I eat the fruit of misery, For His blood gives me hope and immortality.


By His stripes, my fate is sealed. 



His righteousness is mine. For shame I have relief, Because He bore my sorrows to blot out my grief. His love drives out the fear that used to cleave to me. The Father has accepted me. I have security, With hugs that say I’m His, and in His house I’ll dine, For He Himself provides both the bread and wine. Fruits of the Holy Spirit make His presence real, Because it is His nature to save, restore and heal.





Feasting on His goodness, resting in His joy. The heavy yoke has lifted, no longer to annoy. All bitterness gives way to blessings that sustain,  Love beyond all reason, peace I can’t explain. To make me rich in faith, my Jesus became poor, And those who trust in Him He saves forevermore. His grace has set me free to dance, rejoice, and sing, And with cheerfulness to give an offering.

  

His stripes reverse the curse as if it never came to be.  Joy to all the world, for He brings us liberty.



Because I have the mindset of my sovereign Lord, And as I lean on Him, my vision is restored. Nobody can condemn me; no weapon can succeed Against me because I am following His lead. In Jesus I have access to every miracle Because in Him all of God’s promises are possible.  In boldness I can speak and know they will come true, Because the things He’s spoken He will surely do.


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Act With Tact to Bring Things Back Intact, Part I

To act with tact can certainly help bring things back intact.

The prophet Daniel knew this. Therefore he did not react

When King Nebuchadnezzar sent his hatchet man to him

With news that did not bode well and in fact was very grim.

“All wise guys in this entire kingdom will be cut to pieces,”

Warned the executioner. “Because they do not please us.”

“I’ll turn their homes to rubble to atone for their abuses,

Because this king has had it with their miserable excuses.”

Now, Daniel could have gotten worried, thrown a great big fit,

Torn out his hair and hopped inside a pit party pit.

However, he refused to stew but acted with great tact,

Asking why the king had been so hasty to react.

“They said they didn’t know his dream but gladly would lay bare

Their own interpretation of it if he cared to share

A clue or two about whatever thoughts had filled his head

While he lay sleeping peacefully upon his comfy bed.”

“Well, don’t blame me,” is how I’d probably answer in that case.

“You never asked what I thought. How ‘bout giving me some grace?”

“If the king does not control his temper, he may go insane.

Sometimes that happens to a guy with vengeance on the brain.”

Despite the sudden notice, though, he didn’t get offended.

Nor did he panic like a guy who’s suddenly rear ended.

Instead of claiming ignorance, he went straight unto the king,

Not waving crazy protest signs but with an “offering.”

“If you will give me time, I soon will have an answer for you,”

He told the king of Babylon. “I surely won’t ignore you.”

Then he went home and told his friends that it was time to pray.

God answered him and he went to the palace the next day.

He had an answer for the king, but first, “Please act with tact.

Don’t shoot the men who let you down. The Lord will pay you back

For pain they caused by failing you, and He will not be slow.

So, please forgive their ignorance. Your dream I’ve come to show.”

To Survive This Christmas Season: My End of Year Goal

To survive this Christmas season,

Ending the year with a good reason,

Has become my current goal.

Because I want to be made whole.

But December has proven to be a rough month. Get out your snow boots.

Because I feel a drift coming on.

Thanksgiving was nice,

A time to celebrate

Family, friendships, happy times.

Success is a different story though. The lack of books sales says it isn’t ending with a bang.

As for writing, I don’t feel motivated.

Trials have gotten me down.

Encouragement came, followed by false accusation.

It’s all I can do not to drown in it.

I can’t really tell you how or when or who, but when I feel the heaviness pressing down on me,

I know It’s more than winter blues. It’s what others choose,

Not just what I read in the news,

But other worldly views. Can’t lie in bed

Because it’s hard to get the words out of my head.

Then they come back to haunt me, to taunt me. If you’ve ever had an angry finger pointed at you

Then maybe you know how I feel.

But it’s the start of Hanukkah.

I need to light a candle,

Let it shine. Light divine,

It’s Advent Time. Looking forward to Christ’s return. No room to spurn

The memory of His coming.  Much to learn.

He’s coming soon.

Look up, your redemption

Draws near. Have no fear, because this is meant to be a time of good cheer.

To survive this Christmas season

I can’t allow the treason

Of sins past, present, or future

To cloud my way. It’s a good day.

Blessings new every morning, though there come a storm warning.

To survive this Christmas season

Takes more than human reason.

So, lift your eyes. Deny the shame.

It’s time to rejoice. Lift up the name.

Jesus came once. He’ll come again. It’s more than just a season. He’s the reason.

 

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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

Once Upon a Rooftop: Four Men and a Mat

Once upon a rooftop

Four men came with a mat

To lay a man at Jesus’ feet.

But what is up with that?

 

What do these rooftop men stand for,

Who lowered him on down?

Because God always has a plan,

But not for man’s renown.

 

Perhaps the first man’s like the Father,

God of light and love,

Who sent His only Son to earth

From heaven’s throne above.

 

Who knows the heartache He endured

To see Christ on the cross

Partaking of such guilt and shame?

Just think how much it cost!

 

Our burdens Jesus gladly bore,

Though He endured much pain.

For our own sins He suffered loss.

Through Him we’ve much to gain

 

Because the Father gave Him

As a sacrifice for sin.

He let His back be mocked and whipped,

Our victory to win.

 

Therefore His wounds bring us true peace.

Our burdens He did bear

Through the power of the Spirit

Who this truth does share.

 

The Father, Spirit, Son, you see,

That blessed Trinity,

Are like an awesome triangle

That brings us liberty.

 

But one more rooftop man gives you

A brand new faith dimension.

For God’s right arm did all the work,

But we are His extension,

 

The reason for the rectangle

We’re privileged to help carry,

A corner of the sinner’s mat

Which once appeared so scary.

 

But Jesus tore apart the roof

That wouldn’t let us near

To come into God’s presence,

And He says, “Be of good cheer!”

 

To Jesus’ left the Father stands.

They each hold up an end.

The Spirit, also, hovering near,

To God’s Word does attend.

 

Invisibly they wait for us

To take the final part,

Because He’s given us a choice:

“Ignore” or “take to heart.”

 

The Father, Spirit, and Son do long

To help us in our task.

They’re always there to meet our needs,

If only we will ask.

 

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Success Amid Stress Comes From Knowing You’re Blessed

Have you felt the stress that comes from seeing no success?

Perhaps you think you’ve blown it and therefore cannot be blessed.

You want someone to let you know there’s meaning to your life,

But all you feel you’ve gotten for your efforts is pure strife.

 

The pressure to succeed in marketing can cause much stress

If people with ten talents needle you for having less.

The devil says, “Where are your sales? Your gift did not succeed.”

That does present a problem in a world immersed in greed.

 

For success is just an end product by which men seek to measure

How well their strategies have worked to snag desired treasure.

But what serves as the best yardstick for measuring success?

Does it consist of what you eat or how you choose to dress?

 

(And in the end who are you really trying to impress?)

 

To try to serve both God and mammon will not get you blessed,

Because the lust for worldly things leads only to distress.

For what good does it do to gain the world but lose your soul?

And what profit do you get unless what’s broken is made whole?

 

Success is like the end point of a well-established goal.

In order to achieve it, you must climb out of the hole

That sunk you in depression over failed sales strategy

And wants to lock you in a trap of negativity.

 

To climb out starts with little steps you may not want to do.

But if you’ll take the time for them, your strength you will renew.

The first step: Dare to open up your Bible. Start to read.

Ask God to show you passages to meet your deepest need.

 

And, though it goes against your “grain,” give thanks for little things:

Like God’s abundant mercy and the favor that He brings.

Praise Him for sending His own Son to die upon a cross,

So that nobody who believes in Him will suffer loss.

 

To do this may take every ounce of courage you possess,

Because to set aside that time means saying no to “Bess”

And chores she wants to tie you to which only give you stress.

But once these truths free up your mind, you’ll surely have success.

 

“This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.” Joshua 1:8

 

“But whoso looks into the perfect law of liberty, and continues therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.” James 1:25

 

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of slavery.” Galatians 5:1

 

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

 

 

 

The Gifts God Gives to us are Excellent

God’s gifts to us are excellent, absolutely excellent!

The gifts that we receive from Him are glorious to behold.

He spoke to what He made and called it good – yes, very good.

And when we trust in Him, we have good reason to be bold.

 

Those who believe in Christ will do the same works He has done,

Because His gifts are excellent, and giving them is fun.

Such gifts, which God dispenses, can result in signs and wonders,

Because, though man may fail you, our Lord Jesus makes no blunders.

 

He never doubted who He was but spoke with clarity.

The teachings that he fed the crowds rang with authority.

“For if you who are evil know to give your kids good stuff,

Your Father who’s in heaven will supply more than enough

 

Of what you need to live a joyful life upon the earth.

The love He lavishes is of immeasurable worth.”

In order to accept it, though, you need to know it’s real,

That using spiritual gifts does not depend on how you feel.

 

They are not based what you feel or think that you deserve.

The strength you need to offer them does not require raw nerve,

But a love for excellence you know can only come from God.

So, let that be the shoe with which your gospel feet are shod,

 

With praise poured through an earthen vessel resting on His Word,

And acts of faith well-grounded in the truths that you have heard.

For healing comes by being fortified in His great might,

So, take the time to edify yourself before you fight

 

By knowing that’s He’s excellent. His gifts to your are excellent.

The gifts that you receive from Him are glorious to behold.

He spoke to what He made and called it good – yes, very good.

And when you trust in Him, you have good reason to be bold.

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The Christian Writer’s Genesis, First Three Days

  1. To begin with, God made the Christian writer and began to pour through her a creative work – a glimpse of heaven delivered through an earthen vessel.
  2. The foundation of her work had no discernible form, however, and lacked wisdom. Darkness overshadowed the depths of her potential. But God’s Spirit moved upon the living waters of His Word.
  3. God said, “Shine revelation,” and revelation shone.
  4. He saw that the revelation was good, and divided the revelation from the condemnation.
  5. God called the revelation “fresh inspiration,” and he called the darkness “blind inclination.” Joy followed mourning to form the first step of a masterpiece.

 

It Had Begun. This Was Day One!

  1. Then God spoke to the Christian writer, “Your story needs a firm plot structure to divide the creative truths inside this work from one another, as each one has been designed with a unique purpose in mind.”
  2. And God designed a detailed plot structure for the Christian writer to follow, to separate lesser elements from her work’s highest goal. It was so happening!
  3. God called the plot structure “writer’s heaven” – hard work well worth celebrating. For, though difficult to write, this outline led to a new dawn. The second step toward a masterpiece had begun.

 

WOOHOO!

  1. And God said, “Put the work’s most refreshing elements into one spot, so we can see the parts that are more “down-to-earth.”
  2. God called the down-to-earth elements a “reality check” (drama) and called the refreshing elements “pure enjoyment” comedy. And God saw that the story was easier to follow.
  3. And God said, “Let down-to-earth readers produce constructive feedback, yielding seeds of inspiration to sow into the work. May these ideas grow into trees that bear great fruit – inspiring seeds for brand new stories. (Believe me, it was happening!)
  4. So, the Christian writer went for feedback, and down-to-earth readers provided it. It started with “grass-roots” – people that she knew. Writing became more than a hobby as ideas matured and in turn inspired more ideas. God saw that it was good.
  5. Enthusiasm overcame writer’s block, the third step toward publication.

Hence Day Three, Start of a Victory!

And thirteen became a blessed number because God created it! It’s not a jinx, but it can be pivotal. For with the information given, you have a choice: to give up writing (jinx it) or continue in the process and receive the many blessings that come from persevering to the end.

 

Blazing Trails Through Jungles of Writing Rejection