Our homes were never meant to harbor hell,
And none but this one did so quite so well.
Just past these doorposts lies a darkened world,
And past these portals, horrors are unfurled;
And hopeless are these walls, for want of light
Doth plague this home inhabited by night.
A broken staircase hides the higher realms,
The faded family portrait overwhelms,
And traces of the life that could have been
Are broken on the floor, this devil’s den.
The ghosts of my forefathers walk these rooms.
This dwelling place is home to many tombs,
Memorials to tragedy and pain.
The curse of ages past has left its stain.
Corruption reaches to the cornerstone.
This house was built of blood and born of death.
This history still haunts the present time.
The forlorn fate of this dead wood and stone
Is to keep from its occupant the breath
That urges him to flee, to fight, to climb.
Photo by Daniel Olah on Unsplash
Soul, be silent. Listen well.
Hope in God, and pray.
He who saved your soul from hell
Will bring you through this day.
Worry never. Doubt him less.
Know that he is God.
Learn to live in humbleness,
And trust your Shepherd’s rod.
Fix your focus. Do not shirk.
Stand as he has stood.
He will cause all things to work
Together for your good.
If this day should end in death,
Sing the last refrain.
Faithful to the final breath,
At last, to die is gain.
Photo by Artem Sapegin on Unsplash
Oh know your place, my soul.
Remember that your days are few.
To live with just this age in view.
Relinquish your control.
Eternal God most high,
Provide perspective to my days.
To live in conflict to your ways
As death draws ever nigh.
Stained with sin but for your grace, I
Long to look upon your face. Thy
Never-failing word commands my
Failing heart to focus. Faith is
Crying, “Father, stoke us. Take this
Weakened will in your hands.” Of his
Life and death and life again, I
Sing, a breath midst strife and sin. Thy
Son resplendent understands my
War with this temptation. Such is
Life till death’s cessation. In this
Hope my salvaged soul stands, all his.
Do we then dare to look within
These hearts inhabited by sin
That we, by looking well, might win
Our lives from this dark gamble?
Or is the truth too much to take
For all the ways it makes us shake
When bones and promises do break
And lives are seen in shambles?
For when we peer behind the screen,
And our reality is seen,
We cannot claim that we are clean
But must confess conviction.
We spurned the fountainhead above
And killed the son who came in love.
Our hands still bear his blood like gloves.
Our innocence is fiction.
We dare not let ourselves believe
That we could e’er our sins retrieve.
Christ’s righteousness we must receive
If we would walk in freedom.
So take no chances with this life
By gambling yours ‘gainst certain strife.
Embrace the Word, the surgeon’s knife,
And leave the liar’s kingdom.
Jim Elliot has done it again. Continue reading
“Pokemon Go” came out this past week in app stores, and, consequently, twenty-somethings all over are reliving their childhood calling to “catch ‘em all!” By using smartphones, we can now see the teeming masses of Pidgeys and Rattatas that pepper the landscape as we hunt the elusive Scyther on campus (no exaggeration; NOBTS is covered with Pidgeys and Rattatas). I have to admit that I’m sucked into the craze. For a simple enough game, “Pokemon Go” delivers hours of fun.
The day is overcast
I see in skies ahead
The birds and copters flying fast
My heart is filled with dread
The city lies below
From there not few have fled
For therein winds of death do blow
And therein walk the dead
Awake but not alive
Consumed to flesh and bone
The corpses feed to just survive
Together and alone
Detached from what is life
A hunger overgrown
With tragedy their days are rife
Their hearts as good as stone
And such were some of you
But you have been redeemed
The promised cure has proven true
Beyond what man has dreamed
The sleepers now awake
The lifeless voices screamed
And war ensues to fin’lly break
The end the cursed one schemed
Counted righteous, yet we sin
Broken, but He lives within
Dying daily while we live
We are paupers, yet we give
Owning, but cannot afford
Wealth belonging to the Lord
Rich beyond all human dreams
In the desert finding streams
Walking from the state of death
Lungs of dust inflate with breath
Weakness shows a deeper might
Faith replaces eyes for sight
Hope endures when hope has died
Tortured souls in peace abide
Counting joy the deepest strife
Dying Son; eternal life
Have you ever read something that made you second guess your level of devotion to the Lord? I recently started reading through The Journals of Jim Elliot, and I’ve started wondering if I even know the Lord at all. Ok, that’s probably an exaggeration. But Elliot’s heart for God, his concern for holiness, and his bold prayers challenge my weak faith. He follows a simple model in journaling: he simply reads a chapter in Scripture, finds a point of application, and then prays for growth in godliness. His method isn’t complicated. Even the youngest Christian can follow his format. And yet, by his simple faith and obedience, Elliot models a vibrant walk with the Lord. I’m currently reading through his thoughts on Exodus (which have been incredibly sobering), and I’ve found myself speechless before his testimony. As I was reading through his journal entries, one entry in particular struck me.