Monday, April 30, 2012

Clockwork

I wrote this after reflecting on Romans 8:6- "For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace." In my journal meditations I noted that "Our sin nature is a clock, and the stroke of midnight is the hammer stroke of God's wrath."

There is a clock whose iron gears
Grind slow and sure to midnight's stroke,
The ticking hands mark man's short years
Of toil under mortal yoke.

When clockwork hands draw to their close
And death's knell rings out at the last
The bell is struck with iron blows-
The hammer stroke of final wrath.

For this inexorable fate
Christ did in flesh his glory dim
So that at the appointed place
The wrath of God would fall on him.

Because Christ dealt with death and hell
A new clock has been built for me,
Whose final stroke's a wedding bell
To usher in eternity.




Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Jesus Can Raise Cain

A man returns up from a field
Where his job is to make it yield
Its fruit;
The secret is to work and sweat
For food, so as not to forget
The Fall.
But looking at his hands reveals
The dark-red blood, not yet congealed-
Or silent.
A brother’s blood cries out to God
From underneath the well-tilled sod
For justice.

A man lies dead inside a grave
Whose job it was to die and save
The lost.
He willingly went to his death
And cried out with his final breath,
“It’s finished!”
But looking at his cold hands shows
The dark-red blood and nail-made holes-
Not silent.
The Firstborn’s blood cries out to God
From a fresh-cut graveyard plot
For mercy.

That man now sits upon a throne
Who died to ransom all his own
From darkness.
His blood now speaks a better word
Than him who tended that first herd
Of cattle.
Mercy over justice breaks
For justice kills but mercy makes
A people.
And so now Adam’s greatest Son
Can give the people that he’s won
Salvation.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

"You shouted, and you broke through my deafness"

Foul speech and feral screams
Resounded in my ears,
The ancient sound of blasphemy,
The panicked bleat of fear.

It made me ache for quietness
To hear the loathsome dim.
I wanted simple peace and rest,
Instead of echoed sin.

The noise was my iniquity,
My own orchestral hell,
I knew that it would sound for me
Until the soon death-knell.

The discord of my wickedness,
Though horrid, was surpassed
By a voice from which was no egress-
Old Condemnation's rasp.

In grating, retching, rattled tones
Dripped with infernal glee,
It said I'd stand before a throne
To be pronounced guilty.

O God! Please no! I beg to be
Annihilated now,
Than to join eternally
The wailing damned crowd.

But as I wept and moaned and sighed
Over my wretched case,
The clash began to then subside-
A strong voice took its place.

And what a voice! I'd never heard
Such a manly timbre,
It grew with every golden word
In speech I'll e'er remember.

In rich and polyphonic tones
He spoke of work completed,
He claimed me as his very own-
For me he interceded.

I heard with incredulity
The judge's guiltless sentence,
I strained to hear sin's counter-plea
But praise God! All was silence.

No condemnation? No demise?
I shouted from the earth.
I laughed, and sang up to the skies
Where angels joined my mirth.

My Advocate and I now speak
Of his good mediation
And how he took my future bleak
To give me jubilation.

We sing and talk and laugh and cry
With others whom he's singing
And some sweet day we'll sing on high
A song that's never ending.

Friday, April 6, 2012

"You Touched Me, And I Burned For Your Peace"

Rotten, filthy, loathesome rags
Cling to my blackened skin.
I feel the weight of my regrets,
I'm crushed beneath my sin.
In my great pain and my despair,
A cry rips from my throat,
My guilt burns from my very bones
From head down to my toes.

But as I lie curled on the ground
I feel a gentle hand,
And warmth diffuses my dead frame
From him, the God-like Man.
With strong arms now he lifts me up
Out of that hellish place
And brings me 'neath a waterfall-
A strong torrent of grace.

Cool, cascading, cleansing flow
That washes sins away,
My rags are gone and on my skin
I feel the heat of day.
Here he clothes me all in white,
My deadened day are done,
Where once I was an orphan,
Now I've been touched by the Son.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Jesus Is Worth It

David Sitton's old mentor used to say to him, "Let's go get some for Jesus!" I wrote this poem because Jesus is worth any cost we might pay in global service to him.

Come gospel workers, join the toil,
May God’s great love compel us
To live for him  on foreign soil-­‐
Let’s go get some for Jesus!

Though mighty is the fallen foe
With  power to deceive us;
His light and truth God will bestow-
Let’s go get some for Jesus!

And though the danger is quite real,
We must not let it grieve us,
But forward in the Spirit's zeal
Let's go get some for Jesus!

Someday, believer, you will die,
But long before you leave us
Come sing out the old gospel cry,
"Let's go get some for Jesus!"

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Dangers of Books

Here's another piece I wrote in class last fall- it was a time of great inspiration for some reason. As far as I know, the events depicted in his poem have not yet happened to Kyle. And I pray they never will.


I knew a man whose name was Kyle
Who read from Spurgeon, Frame and Ryle.
Theology consumed his thoughts
He drank from books like one drinks droughts

He read all day from dawn to dusk
Clung to his books like a mollusk,
In fact he’d only read no more
To take a trip to the bookstore.

This man who read with every meal
Was soon to suffer from his zeal
Ignorant of his dreadful fate,
His floor could not contain the weight

Of books so many, piled high
So that one day when he passed by
He accidentally bumped a stack
Which fell suddenly on his back

And followed now by tomes in dozens
Fell on my friend, began to bludgeon
Our dear Kyle on his head
And soon he fell to the ground, dead.

The lesson here that we must see
Is that though words cannot hurt me
The books that broke poor Kyle’s bones
Were heavier than sticks or stones.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Student's Plight

I wrote this in class last Fall after staying up all night. This piece is dedicated to Josh Maloney, who will discuss with me the merits of poetry that I've written, even if they were written during his class.


Didn’t get much sleep last night,
Stayed up from dusk to morning light;
Now I’m going down real fast,
Too bad that I am still in class,
I can’t sleep if I want to pass-
This is the student’s plight.

I cannot seem to concentrate
(It comes from being up too late)
On Petrarch and his lady fair
Or readings from the Canonziere;
Honestly, I don’t much care‐
This nap can hardly wait.

My eyelids feel like sheets of lead,
I can’t even hold up my head;
Therefore, I think that it’s high time
For me to end this tired rhyme
And finally to gladly climb
Into my waiting bed.