Pearls Before Swine

To give truth to him who loves it not is but to give him more mul­ti­plied rea­sons [plen­ti­ful mate­r­i­al] for misinterpretation.”

George Mac­Don­ald, Min­is­ter, poet, and nov­el­ist (1824 — 1905)

I am com­ing to believe that this quote suf­fers from the same symp­toms with which Jim Elliot’s “He is no fool” quote is beset, in that there are many vari­a­tions float­ing around out there and lit­tle to sug­gest which has greater verac­i­ty. Anoth­er pos­si­bil­i­ty is that the author may have com­mu­ni­cat­ed, in print or per­son, the same mean­ing­ful phrase mul­ti­ple times and per­haps not the same way every time. The first time I heard Ravi Zacharias relate this quo­ta­tion it was with the “more mul­ti­plied rea­sons” word­ing and that remains my favorite, but I’ve sub­se­quent­ly heard him quote it as “more plen­ti­ful rea­sons” and so I am left in doubt if one or the oth­er is real­ly more accu­rate. Search­ing the inter­webs I find both ver­sions in sim­i­lar abundance.

Words of a skeptic…

The char­ac­ter of Jesus has not only been the high­est pat­tern of virtue, but the strongest incen­tive in its prac­tice, and has exert­ed so deep an influ­ence, that it may be tru­ly said that the sim­ple record of three years of active life has done more to regen­er­ate and to soft­en mankind than all the dis­qui­si­tions of philoso­phers and all the exhor­ta­tions of moralists.” 

— William E. H. Lecky, “The His­to­ry of Euro­pean Morals from Augus­tus to Charlemagne”.

Him­self not a believ­er (Ravi describes his as a skep­tic) but unable to draw any con­clu­sion but this.

~ “Let My Peo­ple Think: One God Among Many, Pt 2 of 2”, Ravi Zacharias, April 20, 2013

The “Progressive” Man

Clive Staples Lewis

First, as to putting the clock back; Would you think I was jok­ing if I said that you can put a clock back, and that if the clock is wrong it is often a very sen­si­ble thing to do? But I would rather get away from that whole idea of clocks. We all want progress. But progress means get­ting near­er to the place where you want to be. And if you have tak­en a wrong turn­ing, then to go for­ward does not get you any near­er. If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walk­ing back to the right road; and in that case the man who turns back soon­est is the most pro­gres­sive man. We have all seen this when doing arith­metic. When I have start­ed a sum the wrong way, the soon­er I admit this and go back and start again, the faster I shall get on. There is noth­ing pro­gres­sive about being pig-head­ed and refus­ing to admit a mis­take. And I think if you look at the present state of the world, it is pret­ty plain that human­i­ty has been mak­ing some big mis­takes. We are on the wrong road. And if that is so, we must go back. Going back is the quick­est way on.”

— Clive Sta­ples Lewis, Mere Chris­tian­i­ty, Chap­ter 5, “We Have Cause to be Uneasy”

A Gem to Store in my Hearthoard

With great joy I now real­ize that I would much rather spend the remain­der of my life know­ing, desir­ing, hav­ing found, but nev­er hav­ing, than instead reach the the ter­mi­nus know­ing that for all my seek­ing, I nev­er found it, nev­er knew it, and yes, per­haps ques­tion­ing if I had done all that I could have done to find and if I had been faith­ful to myself and that which is truth.

Creed” — by Steve Turner

Lis­ten Mp3: Ravi Zacharias’ read­ing of “Creed” by Steve Turner

We believe in Marxfreudanddarwin.
We believe every­thing is OK
as long as you don’t hurt anyone,
to the best of your def­i­n­i­tion of hurt,
and to the best of your def­i­n­i­tion of knowledge.

We believe in sex before, during,
and after marriage.
We believe in the ther­a­py of sin.
We believe that adul­tery is fun.
We believe that sodomy is OK
We believe that taboos are taboo.

We believe that every­thing’s get­ting better
despite evi­dence to the contrary.
The evi­dence must be inves­ti­gat­ed, and
you can prove any­thing with evidence.

We believe there’s some­thing in horoscopes,
UFO’s and bent spoons;
Jesus was a good man just like Buddha,
Mohammed, and ourselves.
He was a good moral teacher although we think some
his good morals were bad.

We believe that all reli­gions are basi­cal­ly the same;
at least the one that we read were.
They all believe in love and goodness.
They only dif­fer on mat­ters of creation,
sin, heav­en, hell, God, and salvation.

We believe that after death comes The Nothing
because when you ask the dead what hap­pens they say Nothing.
If death is not the end, if the dead have lied,
then it’s com­pul­so­ry heav­en for all
except­ing per­haps Hitler, Stal­in and Genghis Khan.

We believe in Mas­ters and Johnson.
What’s select­ed is average.
What’s aver­age is normal.
What’s nor­mal is good.

We believe in total dis­ar­ma­ment because We believe
there are direct links between war­fare and bloodshed.
Amer­i­cans should beat their guns into tractors
and the Rus­sians would be sure to follow.

We believe that man is essen­tial­ly good.
It’s only his behav­iour that lets him down.
This is the fault of society.
Soci­ety is the fault of conditions.
Con­di­tions are the fault of society.

We believe that each man must find the truth
that is right for him.
Real­i­ty will adapt accordingly.
The uni­verse will read­just. His­to­ry will alter.
We believe that there is no absolute truth
except­ing the truth that there is no absolute truth.

We believe in the rejec­tion of creeds
and the flow­er­ing of indi­vid­ual thought.

*Post Script*

If chance be the father of all flesh,
dis­as­ter is his rain­bow in the sky,
and when you hear:
‘state of emergency’,
‘sniper kills ten’,
‘troops on rampage’,
‘youths go looting’,
‘bomb-blast school’,
it is but the sound of man wor­ship­ing his maker.

— Steve Turner

Chapter One of the Great Story


“All their life in this world
and all their adven­tures in Narnia
had only been the cov­er and the
title page: now at last they were
begin­ning Chap­ter One of the
Great Sto­ry which no one on earth
has read: which goes on forever:
in which every chap­ter is
bet­ter than the one before.” 

—C. S. Lewis,
The Last Battle

James 1–3 NASB

James 1

1James, a bond-ser­vant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes who are dis­persed abroad: Greetings.

2Con­sid­er it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter var­i­ous tri­als, know­ing that the test­ing of your faith pro­duces endurance. And let endurance have its per­fect result, so that you may be per­fect and com­plete, lack­ing in nothing.

5But if any of you lacks wis­dom, let him ask of God, who gives to all gen­er­ous­ly and with­out reproach, and it will be giv­en to him. But he must ask in faith with­out any doubt­ing, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, dri­ven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive any­thing from the Lord, being a dou­ble-mind­ed man, unsta­ble in all his ways.

But the broth­er of hum­ble cir­cum­stances is to glo­ry in his high posi­tion; 10 and the rich man is to glo­ry in his humil­i­a­tion, because like flow­er­ing grass he will pass away. 11 For the sun ris­es with a scorch­ing wind and with­ers the grass; and its flower falls off and the beau­ty of its appear­ance is destroyed; so too the rich man in the midst of his pur­suits will fade away.

12 Blessed is a man who per­se­veres under tri­al; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempt­ed, “I am being tempt­ed by God”; for God can­not be tempt­ed by evil, and He Him­self does not tempt any­one. 14 But each one is tempt­ed when he is car­ried away and enticed by his own lust. 15 Then when lust has con­ceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accom­plished, it brings forth death. 16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 17 Every good thing giv­en and every per­fect gift is from above, com­ing down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no vari­a­tion or shift­ing shad­ow. 18 In the exer­cise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.

19 This you know, my beloved brethren. But every­one must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not achieve the right­eous­ness of God. 21 There­fore, putting aside all filth­i­ness and all that remains of wicked­ness, in humil­i­ty receive the word implant­ed, which is able to save your souls. 22 But prove your­selves doers of the word, and not mere­ly hear­ers who delude them­selves. 23 For if any­one is a hear­er of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his nat­ur­al face in a mir­ror; 24 for once he has looked at him­self and gone away, he has imme­di­ate­ly for­got­ten what kind of per­son he was. 25 But one who looks intent­ly at the per­fect law, the law of lib­er­ty, and abides by it, not hav­ing become a for­get­ful hear­er but an effec­tu­al doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.

26 If any­one thinks him­self to be reli­gious, and yet does not bri­dle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s reli­gion is worth­less. 27 Pure and unde­filed reli­gion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to vis­it orphans and wid­ows in their dis­tress, and to keep one­self unstained by the world.

James 2

1My brethren, do not hold your faith in our glo­ri­ous Lord Jesus Christ with an atti­tude of per­son­al favoritism. 2For if a man comes into your assem­bly with a gold ring and dressed in fine clothes, and there also comes in a poor man in dirty clothes, 3and you pay spe­cial atten­tion to the one who is wear­ing the fine clothes, and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and you say to the poor man, “You stand over there, or sit down by my foot­stool,” 4have you not made dis­tinc­tions among your­selves, and become judges with evil motives? 5Lis­ten, my beloved brethren: did not God choose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the king­dom which He promised to those who love Him? 6But you have dis­hon­ored the poor man. Is it not the rich who oppress you and per­son­al­ly drag you into court? 7Do they not blas­pheme the fair name by which you have been called?

8If, how­ev­er, you are ful­fill­ing the roy­al law accord­ing to the Scrip­ture, “You shall love your neigh­bor as your­self,” you are doing well. 9But if you show par­tial­i­ty, you are com­mit­ting sin and are con­vict­ed by the law as trans­gres­sors. 10For who­ev­er keeps the whole law and yet stum­bles in one point, he has become guilty of all. 11For He who said, “Do not com­mit adul­tery,” also said, “Do not com­mit mur­der.” Now if you do not com­mit adul­tery, but do com­mit mur­der, you have become a trans­gres­sor of the law. 12So speak and so act as those who are to be judged by the law of lib­er­ty. 13For judg­ment will be mer­ci­less to one who has shown no mer­cy; mer­cy tri­umphs over judgment.

14What use is it, my brethren, if some­one says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? 15If a broth­er or sis­ter is with­out cloth­ing and in need of dai­ly food, 16and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is nec­es­sary for their body, what use is that? 17Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.

18But some­one may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith with­out the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” 19You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shud­der. 20But are you will­ing to rec­og­nize, you fool­ish fel­low, that faith with­out works is use­less? 21Was not Abra­ham our father jus­ti­fied by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? 22You see that faith was work­ing with his works, and as a result of the works, faith was per­fect­ed; 23and the Scrip­ture was ful­filled which says, “And Abra­ham believed God, and it was reck­oned to him as right­eous­ness,” and he was called the friend of God. 24You see that a man is jus­ti­fied by works and not by faith alone. 25In the same way, was not Rahab the har­lot also jus­ti­fied by works when she received the mes­sen­gers and sent them out by anoth­er way? 26For just as the body with­out the spir­it is dead, so also faith with­out works is dead.

James 3

1Let not many of you become teach­ers, my brethren, know­ing that as such we will incur a stricter judg­ment. 2For we all stum­ble in many ways. If any­one does not stum­ble in what he says, he is a per­fect man, able to bri­dle the whole body as well. 3Now if we put the bits into the hors­es’ mouths so that they will obey us, we direct their entire body as well. 4Look at the ships also, though they are so great and are dri­ven by strong winds, are still direct­ed by a very small rud­der wher­ev­er the incli­na­tion of the pilot desires. 5So also the tongue is a small part of the body, and yet it boasts of great things.

See how great a for­est is set aflame by such a small fire! 6And the tongue is a fire, the very world of iniq­ui­ty; the tongue is set among our mem­bers as that which defiles the entire body, and sets on fire the course of our life, and is set on fire by hell. 7For every species of beasts and birds, of rep­tiles and crea­tures of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by the human race. 8But no one can tame the tongue; it is a rest­less evil and full of dead­ly poi­son. 9With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the like­ness of God; 10from the same mouth come both bless­ing and curs­ing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. 11Does a foun­tain send out from the same open­ing both fresh and bit­ter water? 12Can a fig tree, my brethren, pro­duce olives, or a vine pro­duce figs? Nor can salt water pro­duce fresh.

13Who among you is wise and under­stand­ing? Let him show by his good behav­ior his deeds in the gen­tle­ness of wis­dom. 14But if you have bit­ter jeal­ousy and self­ish ambi­tion in your heart, do not be arro­gant and so lie against the truth. 15This wis­dom is not that which comes down from above, but is earth­ly, nat­ur­al, demon­ic. 16For where jeal­ousy and self­ish ambi­tion exist, there is dis­or­der and every evil thing. 17But the wis­dom from above is first pure, then peace­able, gen­tle, rea­son­able, full of mer­cy and good fruits, unwa­ver­ing, with­out hypocrisy. 18And the seed whose fruit is right­eous­ness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

The Way of Wisdom-James MacDonald-WitW

Excel­lent ser­mon series that cov­ers the premise of “Deci­sion Mak­ing and the Will of God”.

These are the pod­casts, cre­at­ed of seg­ments of the orig­i­nal mes­sages, so there is a lot of repetition. 

  1. Does God Have a Will for Me Pt 1
  2. Does God Have a Will for Me Pt 2
  3. Does God Have a Will for Me Pt 3
  4. Does God’s Will for You Pt 1
  5. Does God’s Will for You Pt 2
  6. The Way of Wis­dom Pt 1
  7. The Way of Wis­dom Pt 2
  8. Deci­sion Time Pt 1
  9. Deci­sion Time Pt 2

Singleness, Marriage, and Wisdom

Should I or should­n’t I?

Indeed, if the coun­sel sin­cere­ly offered by Pas­tor Thomp­son is cor­rect, the impli­ca­tions for Ted’s mar­riage deci­sion are very sobering:

  1. In all the world, there is either no per­son or only one per­son who is eli­gi­ble to be his wife.
  2. If God wants him to remain sin­gle and he mar­ries any­one at all, he is out of God’s will.
  3. If God has a par­tic­u­lar wife cho­sen and he mar­ries some­one else, he is out of God’s will.
  4. If the woman God has select­ed for him mar­ries some­one else, he can­not enjoy God’s will not mat­ter what he does.
  5. If either of the pair mar­ry out of God’s will there is noth­ing they can do to reverse the deci­sion and return to the cen­ter of His will.  They are per­ma­nent­ly strand­ed in the bar­ren ter­rain of God’s “sec­ond (third, fourth,…) best.”


Chap­ter 17: Sin­gle­ness, Mar­riage, and Wis­dom — Pg 283–284, Deci­sion Mak­ing and the Will of God, A Bib­li­cal Alter­na­tive to the Tra­di­tion­al View, 1980, Gar­ry Friesen with J. Robin Maxson.

I Want to Fit into My Birthday Suit

Oh I was much cuter than this even!
Oh I was much cuter than this!

I want to fit into my Birth­day Suit.
It used to be small and soft and cute.
It fit like a glove with room in the boot.
Yes, I want to fit into my Birth­day Suit.

I could buy an ensem­ble off Sav­ile Row;
Dou­ble-breast­ed with waist­co’t; gold but­tons in row;
Fash­ioned and tai­lored with savoir-know;
It’d cost lots of mon­ey and con­tain all my dough.

Gone are the days when first it was fine;
Now stretched, dis­tort­ed, all bezi­er lines.
The vol­ume inte­gral I can­not define.
Rem­i­nisc­ing my sal­ad days [pureéd], when first it was mine.

Stretched thin in places, and dart­ed midway;
Taut on the ends, sup­port cate­nary sway.
Avian foot­prints imprint both my eyes;
and invert­ed horse­shoe lack­luck­sters my smile.

Twice the compliment;
Allot­ted just one.
My beard-hold­er’s doubled;
With more like to come.

Fur­ni­ture Dis­ease, diag­nosed not in time;
No treat­ment or ton­ic may halt the decline.
Grav­i­ta­tion. Migra­tion. Direc­tion? The floors;
What once was my chest, occu­pies now my drawers.

I sup­pose I’ll just have to love what I’ve got;
Con­tent with evi­dences of bat­tles well fought.
Sure, right, tat­tered, bat­tered, in places threadbare;
The darned thing a patch­work of sewn notions of care.

The elbows gone shiny; cuff but­tons not there;
I know not the when, less know I the where.
Rum­pled and crum­pled with creas­es and tears;
Rump fab­ric well felt­ed where pos­te­ri­or meets chair.

I real­ize it now. I have all I’ve sought;
A life­time of love, won­der­ful mem­o­ries wrought;
My Birth­day Suit giv­en, but this one, I bought;
I don’t miss what I once had, near much as I thought.


Spiritualizing Words — “Who are you…?”

Clive Staples Lewis

Peo­ple ask: “Who are you, to lay down who is, and who is not a Chris­t­ian?”: or “May not many a man who can­not believe these doc­trines be far more tru­ly a Chris­t­ian, far clos­er to the spir­it of Christ, than some who do?”

Now this objec­tion is in one sense very right, very char­i­ta­ble, very spir­i­tu­al, very sen­si­tive. It has every ami­able qual­i­ty except that of being use­ful. We sim­ply can­not, with­out dis­as­ter, use lan­guage as these objec­tors want us to use it. I will try to make this clear by the his­to­ry of anoth­er, and very much less impor­tant, word.

The word gen­tle­man orig­i­nal­ly meant some­thing recog­nis­able; one who had a coat of arms and some land­ed prop­er­ty. When you called some­one “a gen­tle­man” you were not pay­ing him a com­pli­ment, but mere­ly stat­ing a fact. If you said he was not “a gen­tle­man” you were not insult­ing him, but giv­ing infor­ma­tion. There was no con­tra­dic­tion in say­ing that John was a liar and a gen­tle­man; any more than there now is in say­ing that James is a fool and an M.A.

But then there came peo­ple who said — so right­ly, char­i­ta­bly, spir­i­tu­al­ly, sen­si­tive­ly, so any­thing but use­ful­ly — “Ah but sure­ly the impor­tant thing about a gen­tle­man is not the coat of arms and the land, but the behav­iour? Sure­ly he is the true gen­tle­man who behaves as a gen­tle­man should? Sure­ly in that sense Edward is far more tru­ly a gen­tle­man than John?” They meant well. To be hon­ourable and cour­te­ous and brave is of course a far bet­ter thing than to have a coat of arms. But it is not the same thing. Worse still, it is not a thing every­one will agree about. To call a man “a gen­tle­man” in this new, refined sense, becomes, in fact, not a way of giv­ing infor­ma­tion about him, but a way of prais­ing him: to deny that he is “a gen­tle­man” becomes sim­ply a way of insult­ing him. When a word ceas­es to be a term of descrip­tion and becomes mere­ly a term of praise, it no longer tells you facts about the object: it only tells you about the speak­er’s atti­tude to that object. (A ‘nice’ meal only means a meal the speak­er likes.) A gen­tle­man, once it has been spir­i­tu­alised and refined out of its old coarse, objec­tive sense, means hard­ly more than a man whom the speak­er likes.

As a result, gen­tle­man is now a use­less word. We had lots of terms of approval already, so it was not need­ed for that use; on the oth­er hand if any­one (say, in a his­tor­i­cal work) wants to use it in its old sense, he can­not do so with­out expla­na­tions. It has been spoiled for that pur­pose. Now if once we allow peo­ple to start spir­i­tu­al­is­ing and refin­ing, or as they might say ‘deep­en­ing’, the sense of the word Chris­t­ian, it too will speed­i­ly become a use­less word. In the first place, Chris­tians them­selves will nev­er be able to apply it to any­one. It is not for us to say who, in the deep­est sense, is or is not close to the spir­it of Christ. We do not see into men’s hearts. We can­not judge, and are indeed for­bid­den to judge. It would be wicked arro­gance for us to say that any man is, or is not, a Chris­t­ian in this refined sense. And obvi­ous­ly a word which we can nev­er apply is not going to he a very use­ful word. As for the unbe­liev­ers, they will no doubt cheer­ful­ly use the word in the refined sense. It will become in their mouths sim­ply a term of praise. In call­ing any­one a Chris­t­ian they will mean that they think him a good man. But that way of using the word will be no enrich­ment of the lan­guage, for we already have the word good. Mean­while, the word Chris­t­ian will have been spoiled for any real­ly use­ful pur­pose it might have served.

We must there­fore stick to the orig­i­nal, obvi­ous mean­ing. The name Chris­tians was first giv­en at Anti­och (Acts 11:26) to ‘the dis­ci­ples’, to those who accept­ed the teach­ing of the apos­tles. There is no ques­tion of its being restrict­ed to those who prof­it­ed by that teach­ing as much as they should have. There is no ques­tion of its being extend­ed to those who in some refined, spir­i­tu­al, inward fash­ion were ‘far clos­er to the spir­it of Christ’ than the less sat­is­fac­to­ry of the dis­ci­ples. The point is not a the­o­log­i­cal or moral one. It is only a ques­tion of using words so that we can all under­stand what is being said. When a man who accepts the Chris­t­ian doc­trine lives unworthi­ly of it, it is much clear­er to say he is a bad Chris­t­ian than to say he is not a Christian.

— C.S. Lewis, Mere Chris­tian­i­ty, Preface

Boxed it All Up and Put it Away for Good


No longer strewn across my life,
Men­tal dross to trip and fall.
Reminders of the long ago,
Hang not upon each wall. 

Gath­ered in a card­board box,
Packed and ordered well.
Flaps fold­ed in and interlocked,
Form cor­ru­gat­ed shell. 

Place upon a stor­age shelf,
Away from thought and mind.
Dis­card­ed not, dis­turb­ing not,
From now till end of time. 

Redeem for Joy (unfinished)

Redeem for Joy (Work­ing title, work in progress)

An econ­o­my estab­lished, most fragile;
Nay Smith, nor Fried­man, but God.
Bespoke of His heart, when time became time;
In gar­den where feet divine trod.

A bal­ance con­trived by holy design;
In pairs to be joined one to one.
Nev­er again to be sep­a­rate, till death us do part;
Togeth­er until life is done.

Untouched it would remain perfect;
The GDP both joy and life.
These prod­ucts; har­vest of such union;
When man doth cleave he to wife.

Now enter a ser­pent most deadly;
With him lies and cor­rup­tion of heart.
Emo­tions, desires, self­ish­ness inspires;
That serve to tear them apart.


And here inspi­ra­tion fails me… I’m think­ing that it may be that in God’s econ­o­my, we are giv­en but a sin­gle mar­riage token to wise­ly invest. I see in Gen­e­sis that God estab­lish­es Man and Woman and Mar­riage… all a sim­ple straight­for­ward plan for which He had to make Man and Woman. I see that man devi­at­ed from that plan often in the Old Tes­ta­ment by prac­tic­ing plu­ral­i­ty, but nev­er ever does God endorse that devi­a­tion, and usu­al­ly in every exam­ple there’s a lit­tle moral­i­ty tale of that devi­a­tion caus­ing no end of heartache and trou­ble. When Christ speaks of mar­riage in the New Tes­ta­ment he basi­cal­ly says, “The mod­el you were giv­en was…” and then quotes the estab­lish­ment of mar­riage from Gen­e­sis. He men­tions that because of your hard hearts, devi­a­tions were tol­er­at­ed (but nev­er endorsed… mar­riage was nev­er ‘rat­i­fied’ to include man’s amend­ments). The the addi­tion­al treat­ments of this top­ic by Paul speak of the ide­al and then he goes on to pro­vide some per­son­al thoughts on how to han­dle the prob­lems that come from sit­u­a­tions that fail the ide­al… He takes pains to say that he’s not speak­ing words giv­en him by the Holy Spir­it, so even that advice is not ‘canon’ or mod­i­fi­ca­tion of the orig­i­nal design. I real­ly strug­gle with this top­ic… espe­cial­ly because near­ly the entire world tells me that I’m dead wrong on this, but I keep com­ing back to these things in scrip­ture that seem to me… to me… to say otherwise.

Unbegun Symphony of Promise

Hand Dirt Seedling Gift Refrain:
They saw the har­vest inside me.
They saw what was not there to see.
Pur­pose which God embed­ded within;
Cre­at­ed with promise to be.
The seed the farmer rejected;
Hull and husk long fall­en and gone;
The sur­face pit­ted and battered;
Dis­card­ed, deemed worth­less and done.

So small the seed hold­ing promise;
Which for lack of nur­ture and sun;
For rich soil nev­er embracing;
Ger­mi­na­tion nev­er begun.

Giv’n them­selves as His instrument;
Samar­i­tans on the stark lane,
Upon which lay, dis­card­ed kernel,
Hope­less. Wretched. Con­sumed by pain.

God’s sor­row-filled heart apparent;
The song He put there unsung.
Yearn­ing to see the seed planted;
The pre­lude well writ­ten begun.

Redeemed by hand of a stranger.
Exam­ined through lens of God’s love.
Found there what oth­ers were missing,
Hid­den in quo­tid­i­an shell.

Warm embrace of earth enclosing;
Show­ered with unde­served love;
Radi­ant grace of acceptance;
Infus­ing the core from above.

Slow­ly the shell starts to soften;
New growth break­ing free from within.
The process now set into motion;
God’s sym­pho­ny of joy begins.

Secure roots of hope descending;
Sup­port­ing as shoot starts to raise;
Bursts forth from cocoon­ing seedbed;
Lift­ing dicotyl arms in praise.


This is writ­ten as a poor attempt to express bound­less grat­i­tude to my friends and fam­i­ly, the love and accep­tance of which, have tak­en me from the bro­ken, hope­less, joy­less, and rather feck­less man of recent past, to some­one who is begin­ning to embrace life and full of joy and the knowl­edge that God has a pur­pose for him.

A dear friend of mine, Allena Volk­say Yates, blessed me by putting this to a tune, which may be heard here.

Looking Back

Look­ing at him the way she used to look at me.
I knew that look was only for me.
Could only then be for me;
Could only ever be for me.
That look told me that I need nev­er doubt
and would nev­er need to seek or fear again.
The words under­scored and rein­forced the look.
The look is no longer turned upon me.
I look upon the emp­ty void, and I sorrow.

It’s good to be able to share this here on PoaM in the now and indeed, be able to Look Back and see the ter­ri­ble hurt I was expe­ri­enc­ing then, whilst being able to Look Now and see the heal­ing God has blessed me with, and hav­ing con­fi­dence as I Look For­ward that, even if there are more such sor­rows, there will be more such love, heal­ing and blessing.

Tatterdemalion Mended

Left but vapor, will-the-wisp in air.
Tat­ter­de­malion rem­nants; trans­par­ent, ethe­re­al, hard­ly there.

Gath­’ring in what’s left, a soul misplaced;
A scrap, a shred, a cast-off trace.

So light, insub­stan­tial, in hands cupped safe.
Away from harm in Sav­ior’s grace.

So gen­tle must the gath­er be; Crush not to dust, the frag­ments frail.
Care­ful. Find each tiny piece.  Over­look but one and fail.

Nur­ture spark in tin­der bed, fuel for growth now being fed.
Gen­tly blow, give life by breath. Fan the flame that coun­ters death.

Place back with­in the hol­low shell. Seam the tear. Mend it well.
Mas­sage full well ’till felt to beat. Restored now soul and heart complete.

My heart may not remain bro­ken with God’s heal­ing touch.

Con­tin­ue read­ing “Tat­ter­de­malion Mended”


    Play­ing at house; pre­tend hus­band and wife.
    If this works out well, we’ll make it for life.
    And if it unrav­els, at least we had fun.

                                                              Did­n’t we?
    We said pret­ty things to cap­ture a heart;
    Sin­cere for the moment, play­ing a part.
    The thresh­old passed, no path­way back.
    Joined and committed.

                                                            Weren’t we?
    But where have you gone? The fan­ta­sy lost.
    Sum­mer’s warmth over, panes crazed with the frost.
    The silence now speaks, in deaf­en­ing voice.
    But we’re still in love; still each oth­ers’ choice.

                                                             Aren’t we?
    Fun while it last­ed. But mov­ing ahead.
    Find­ing new play­mates to pre­tend to wed.
    What we had was spe­cial, no one could replace.
    Our dream plays again.

                         Now with­out me.
    Anoth­er wound, to hide deep inside.
    So many scars, tears of flesh, tears of eye.
    Betray­al of heart; pain rend­ing wide.
    But we’ve healed.

                                                            Haven’t we?
Inspired par­tial­ly by Joshua Har­ris’ “I Kissed Dat­ing Good­bye” and “Does Any­body Hear Her” by Cast­ing Crowns. June 23, 2011
I don’t usu­al­ly wri… I ‑don’t- write poet­ry. This rather came on it’s own. Not fan­tas­tic prose, but it was mean­ing­ful for me. June 27, 2011

[I guess I did start writ­ing poet­ry after this first out­pour­ing. I don’t know if it’s good, but it makes me hap­py and it helps to take it out and fash­ion some­thing from it rather than leav­ing it block­ing things up inside. July 30, 2013]