This year, the Lord revealed truths about Himself to me—
Not in grand gestures and excessively dramatic style,
Not in the form of a burning bush or a speaking donkey,
Not even in the guise of an angel in a dream.
But He showed Himself to me in the little, everyday things—
in verses daily read, in hymns often sung,
in casual conversations, in trivial tasks—
which I think is even more majestic and astounding.
 
This year, He taught me He knows me inside out
And that He’s the best person to teach me lessons—
Never too hard so I’d inevitably fail,
But also never too easy so I’d get too comfortable.
He taught me to fully let go of my life’s steering wheel
And wait on His every turn with patience and complete trust.
He taught me to never doubt His loving care,
To never question why He puts me in situations,
But simply to ask how to best glorify Him there—
How to best bloom in the garden He has placed me.
 
This year He revealed to me matters of the heart,
Teaching me to love more unconditionally His people,
And let go of things that aren’t meant for me.
This year He taught me that letting go doesn’t always have to be painful,
And that painful breakage can be beautiful too.
Like a vessel breaking and showing up cracks,
Only to reveal golden light inside.
 
Yes, this year, God broke my heart—a lot.
But it all turns out to be a beautiful breakage
And, dare I say it, may He prepare me for more heartbreaks.
Because it was when he broke me that I’ve seen—
I am in need of nothing and no one else but Him.
 
This year I learned to be more honest with the Lord—
With how I feel, what I hope for, what I’m confused about,
Things I want to know from Him and of Him.
My relationship with Him grew so much deeper as He taught me
That I can really and literally talk to Him as I would an esteemed friend.
And isn’t He the best person to be friends with!
 
This year I learned to laugh more heartily—
Not because I have no more cares and concerns,
Not because I can see the solution in every problem,
But because I’ve clearly seen how God is very intimately involved in my daily life—
And with a loving and Almighty God writing your story,
Who needs to fret on the plot development and ending?
 
This year I found myself singing along with Horatio Spafford when he wrote,
“Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, ‘It is well, it is well with my soul.”
Has God spared me from traumatic trials?
It is well with my soul.
Has He kept me from getting things I thought I’ve wanted?
It is well.
Has He told me countless times to let go?
It is well. It is well.
 
Because what He ultimately taught me this year
Is that I may never be enough,
But He always is. Always will be.
And I guess that’s the best lesson of all.
 
And so, yes, I’m now facing a new “turn” in the road.
And I can only smile excitedly as I wait to see,
just right there at the corner, what He has in store for me.
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We’re in the valley of tears.
We’re walking through death’s shadow.
We live a life full of threats and fears.
We’re passing through a dangerous meadow.
 
We’re in this dark vale of tears,
Where there’s toil, hardship, and pain,
Where at times light does not all appear,
Where some days bring none but heavy rain.
 
We’re in the dark, but not for long.
We tremble at night, but dawn is coming.
Light shall come save all of God’s throng
And out of this vale we’ll come victoriously smiling.
 
This is the thought that will bring us through
Jesus our Lord is at the highest station.
This is our life’s most comforting truth–
Christ rules, forever seated on the throne.

Clueless Judgment

Posted: December 19, 2016 in Poems
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They have no idea…
Of how dark my road has been,
Of how dark it still is,
How dark I think it will be.
 
They have no idea…
Of how deserted the road has been for me,
Of how I had to feign strength,
because I had to face the night alone.
 
They have no idea…
Of the sighs, of the hopeless prayers at night.
They know nothing of my reasons for silence,
Nor the excuses for my excessive laughter.
 
They have no idea…
Of how the darkness almost swallowed me up,
Of how I had to steel-proof my heart,
Because I was left to fight alone.

Imperfect

Posted: December 6, 2016 in Poems
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Running out of patience.
Running out of love.
Mind falls short of understanding,
Heart’s getting too onion-skinned.
 
Hands and feet lacking the diligence
To render selfless service from above.
Thoughts of care turn to accusations
Instead of loving considerations.
 
One trigger piles after another
and the day doesn’t get any better.
Every word and thought reveal my defects,
Every action proclaims I’m imperfect.
 
Running out of patience.
Running out of love.
And as my soul seems to go astray,
Tears of self-contempt run hurriedly away.

Peter’s Cross

Posted: December 4, 2016 in Poems
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I feel like a Peter and I see a John.
I see him reclining at Jesus’ bosom,
and I want to ask, “Lord, what about this man?”
What of him? Is he to suffer as I am?
 
I feel like a Peter as I see my fate;
I know I’d be much willing to suffer
and through toil and hardship glorify His name.
But as I see my life’s John, I start to wonder:
 
 How much more pain will I have to endure,
how much longer will I, for His name, shed tears?
How many more triumphs will my John treasure
while I face all my deepest pain and fears?
 
I feel like a Peter as I fall apart
and, as I see the dark path before me,
I can’t help but secretly wish in my heart
that God wrote my fate quite differently.
 
 I see that I have my burden to bear–
for the glory of Christ, for the crown of life.
Yet even as I trudge forward willingly,
my heart follows quite questioningly.

“At Sunrise”

Posted: December 4, 2016 in Poems
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Away from laughter, away from the crowd,
In a shelter that remains to be seen —
Without a single noise, without a sound,
My soul is settled; I have peace within.

Amidst the stillness of early morning
With nothing but the birds’ singing to hear,
I opened His word, sincerely hoping
To know more of God and to know Him near.

With a fluttering heart, His word I read:
“The one whom the Lord loves, He disciplines.”
Thus, though with tear-stained face, my soul is fed.
With this I’m settled. I have peace within.

Swing

Posted: October 9, 2016 in Poems
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The next time you talk to me,
please don’t be a swing,
indecisively moving back and forth
between yes and no,
between thoughts of love and “maybe not,”
between “I like you that much” and “not quite.”

But please, when you decide to notice me,
either slide down my arms,
falling hard and sure,
or don’t slide down at all.

Either tell me plain and clear
that you love me, completely and without fear,
or tell me outright and directly so
that your decision has to be a no.

Because the more your heart-pendulum swings,
the more mine aches.
The more your heart-switch turns on and off,
the more irreparably mine breaks.

So once you tell me again your stories,
go down your swing.
Stop playing.
And for once tell me-
if I should stop waiting.