Monday, December 22, 2014

For What it's Worth

Common fallacy,
you see what you want to see.
Call it disillusionment,
but is it permanent,
this anger burning up inside your soul?
Get a wider lens, adjust the picture,
and see the whole.
Is it depravity that leads us to fight,
and to crave, and to desire?
Lord knows, we've all been burned by the fire
of someone's lies, or someone's pride,
or our own dignity.
How do you walk on, or sit down,
or fight the good fight
when no one will agree with what's wrong
and what's right?
If it's a moral code, let's get the facts straight.
I'm tired of your theories.
Your theories lack weight for such an argument
as the condition of the heart.
Why is there hate?
Why is there pain?
Why are there lies and trusts betrayed?
Can we get to the source?
Can we get to the cure?
Psychologists scratch their heads
while the media flashes more of the same.
What's the end game?
Can a person truly change
when history acts like a road map
to the same tired road?
Let me lighten that load.
It was never yours to bear.
Over coffee, a few will gather
to make sense of a world turned so cruel.
You can hear them try to reason,
and process, and explain it so neat and tidy.
It's Christmas, you know.
Let's not forget to wrap everything up and tie it with a bow.
That would be swell if only it was a permanent mend;
If every heartbreak would heal and every heartache would end.
If the colors of the season and the merriment and good tidings
could foster an exuberance for life that all could know,
we'd be a character of a Charles Dickens novel,
vowing to remember to spread cheer wherever we go.
The harsh reality is that sometimes even a smile is a hard thing to offer.
In a world so twisted can we cling to hope?
Would that help us cope?
Can we cling to a phrase sung out by choirs of angels,
echoing, "Peace on Earth"?
In view of His mercy, can we cling to what is good?
For what it's worth, it would be worth it if we could.

AEJ 12/22/14

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Rejection of "The Self"

I tried to write my own story:
All the characters defined,
A perfect setting, a happy ending
All wrapped up and tied with a bow.
Isn't that how it's supposed to go?
A life considered marketable-
You can grab one right off the shelf.
Consumers stand in line,
Consumed with "The Self".
All shiny and neat,
just like everyone else,
Why help your neighbor
When you can help yourself?
But, it's so twisted,
The way we think we're so mighty-
Pristine castles, all clean and tidy
Until the tide rushes in and we're exposed
In the ruins of our homes made of sand.
"There's got to be a better way",
We all repeat as we head for drier land.
In the stillness, it hits me,
And my lips can not keep quiet.
His love runs deep and His grace is free.
We never have to buy it.
"There's got to be a better way!"
We say it like we mean it.
For clarity sake,
We're dealing with a monster.
It's the product of the lies we're told.
It's the little girl without a home
And the memory that haunts her.
It's the man who has to always win
Because his reputation is all that matters.
It's you and it's me,
Comparing what we have
As we climb Society's ladders.
It's strange, but I hear the echo now,
As if we've all had time to notice.
And, in my weakness, I cry out
"You are The One. You are The Way.
I'm the one in the way.
You are The One. You are The Way.
I'm the one in the way."
I kept my receipt.
I hope you'll let me return it.
"The Self" is a beast.
I'd rather live for The King.

AEJ 10/5/14

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Far From Lackluster

Sometimes it takes some space
to see the worth in the mundane:
the seemingly lackluster
day to day deeds that evoke
a cringe, or a moan,
or a desire to be rescued.
Sometimes it takes some space
to evaluate the assessment
of your current state:
the overwhelmingly crippling thought
that your thoughts
have actually been skewed.
A little room to breathe
allows for a fresh assurance that
now is not forever.
Yet, we dig our feet in the ground
and just endure, as if this
is all we've got, and we think
we're so clever when we make excuses
to avoid the acceptance that
our tiny haphazard lives
were actually meant for more.
So, we hit the grind,
full speed ahead,
trying to find some sense of
attachment and worthwhile meaning
for our daily encounters,
but we still miss the point
at the end of the day.
Amongst ideas like
"Follow your passions" or
"Dream big", do we leave room
to simply trust and obey?
Limitations set aside,
can we thoroughly abide?
Could I jump ship,
knowing He will fully equip,
or could I stay the course;
would I stay on task,
if that is what He'd ask?
In the spirit of complexity,
how could I reduce
the one who made the stars
to a list of things
that I would or would not
be willing to try?
Far from lackluster, I can't deny,
yet, present in the mundane,
His plans are perfect.
He will forever reign.

AEJ 7/20/2014

Monday, June 09, 2014

Time Travel

The other day I was pondering the notion of time machines...
Someone's unrealistic devotion to be set into motion to a time other than now,
Begs me to question which tense, in all logical sense, would I prefer my existence?
Would you visit the past if you're still living in it?
Maybe, for the sake of closure and tact,
if you took a trip back, you could tie up some loose ends,
and make some amends.
Then, would you feel content to live in the present?
Presently, the future appears more intriguing.
Yet, how can you know what the future will hold?
Will it be bright and bold filled with all of the things
from all of the dreams you ever had hoped to see through to fruition?
Would you trust your intuition
to abandon the here and now for something not promised?
If life is but a breath, just breathe.
Breathe it all in while the world will still spin,
not trapped in the current because of where you've been,
and not too far ahead that you miss out on your surroundings.
With a cautious heart, hold on to what you know,
but with a fearless soul be ready to let all of that go.
Moments of trouble are great cause for digging in and finding your groundings.
Though, my foot was slipping and I cried out in distress, a hand lifted me up.
Now, I know where I stand.
Within reach of your hand, I live and move and breathe.
Like some great mysterious plan unraveling,
would it be too much of a stretch to accept
that maybe we are all made for far more than time traveling?


Psalm 94:18, Acts 17:28, Hebrews 13:14

Thursday, May 01, 2014

As Busy As You Choose To Be

You're as busy as you choose to be;
You're as free as you'll allow,
pleading to buy more time,
when the time is now.
Isn't it strange the way things change
when you see the grand scheme of it all?
Just as shadows prove there is still some light,
when your world goes dark,
do you have someone to call?
Have you burnt the last bridge?
Is this the last straw?
Your insecurity is bred by the lies your fed.
I'm as confident as the truth
that all of your strife and busyness
is just a sugar-coated "eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth."
Soon, you'll learn the significance and the peace of letting go,
and then you'll recognize the need to be more aware.
Someone else's world is crashing down,
will you be the one to care?
Remove self-doubt. Remove the need to control.
Time is of the essence when you see the kingdom here and now.
Here, in every heartbeat, in those who express a need,
and in those who don't know how.
I can feel it in my soul.
I can sense it in the eyes I've seen
as I look around.
If desperation had a face,
we would meet it anywhere we turn.
If we would return to grace,
then, how quickly we might learn!
You're as busy as you choose to be;
You're as free as you'll allow.

AEJ 5/1/2014

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Never Forsaken

He said, "never forsaken"
and, yet, I've taken
for granted
the very things that He has handed me.
reaching for more of whatever I can get a hold of.
Hoping to breathe a little easier,
but are these walls closing in now?
Isn't it funny how
it seems a boulder sits upon my chest
as I recall saying, "I'll do my best."
Such a struggle to catch my breath,
and somewhere beneath the weight, I gasp.
Collapsing lungs, He knew the full extent.
Equal status with the Father,
yet He considered that not something to grasp.
He said, "never forsaken",
and I disregard how he became nothing for me.
What a notion! What complete devotion!
Another breath is granted,
and I can feel the load begin to break.
Breathing again, it becomes clear
what is meant by His kingdom;
by His kingdom here in this place.
Letting loose of clenched fists,
hearts awaken to give instead of take.
He said "never forsaken".

AEJ 03/23/2014

Thursday, January 02, 2014

As I Am

Quick to speak; quick to throw out my opinion
on matters of life and strife and someone else’s hurting.
Flirting with the idea that what’s good for some
may not be good for all,
but all we really want is to feel set free from something.
Dodging the bullet by dancing around the truth,
pushing the limits, as shouts of “YOLO!” ring out from our youth.
A resounding theme of “If I do this, life will be grand”,
but before you start, look at your heart.
Crazed from getting from point A to B, looking the part,
accepting what we’ve been taught along the way,
are we numb to the pain?
Do we even realize that we’ve been shot?
Call a doctor! Some solid advice,
considering we’ve all got some problems,
which makes me stop and consider
that maybe the advice that I pride myself in dishing out
could be reserved and better served
up on a platter for my own good and benefit.
Then, again, what’s the use of it
if I turn away like nothing was said.
Deaf ears need more than moving lips.
Show me a passion
and a reaction that would move a mountain
and stir up a fire so bright.
Hues of orange, yellow, and red would ignite
and fill the sky.
But, if it takes heat to start a fire,
better bring some blankets.
Frankly, it’s so cold in my heart,
how could a fire start unless you break through and break it?
Tell me, does that sound about right?
Then, I’d step back and watch you move
as this stone begins to crumble
and this charade gets put on blast, as you take me as I am.
I’ll stand amazed by your willingness to overcome my foolishness
as I question why you even care.
All the while, you give reason to rejoice as I lift my weary voice,
And if this is my cross to bear, may I carry it with honor,
For your glory goes ahead of me and guides each step I take.
Teach me Lord, for your sake, to have some wisdom and some tact
as this world tries to beat me down and reminds me of all I lack.
I’m enough, because you’re more than enough, oh, teach me to repeat it.
Your ways are above my ways. You’re the freedom that I needed.