Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Order, order!

God wants our hearts before our hands.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Welcomed Home

God is the faithful Father,
I am the prodigal son.
He loves and waits and provides,
yet I run and run and run.

God is the faithful Father,

I am the wayward child.
He cares and cries and invites,
Yet I abuse His grace and go wild.

God is the faithful Father,

I am the sorry son.
He welcomes me and rejoices.
I realize the wrong that I've done.

God is the faithful Father,

He sent His only Son,
To mend the relationship,
To forgive me for what I've done.

God is the faithful Father,

I am the thankful guest.
He gives me a fresh start in life,
And shows me His presence is best.

God is the faithful Father,

I am the happy slave.
In obedience I've found freedom.
For good works He me did save.

God is the faithful Father,

I am the hopeful heir
To enjoy heaven with Him
To celebrate forever there.

-Inspired by Jesus' story found in Luke 15

Monday, 29 September 2014

Our God

He is
holy, holy, holy!
And He looks to the
lowly, lowly, lowly.

Friday, 5 September 2014

on souls and soles

In the morning
when you are choosing shoes,
don't snooze
and overlook the most important shoes of all.
And no, I'm not talking about those new name brands from the mall.

I'm talking about the ones the One talks about -
the ones that carry peace to every place,
the ones that you wear that don't wear out,
the ones that help you run the race before you -
Gospel shoes.

These shoes don't go out of style,
and they last mile after mile,
and they must not get lost in the pile.

These shoes don't walk with the tide.
They work worldwide.
They cannot choose to hide.
They talk of the Guide
on the ride of life
through sun and through strife,
down valleys,
up hills,
down alleys,

... and into offices,
where the ladies have their high heels on
and the men their slick, polished shoes -
(those brand names from the mall)
walking tall,
toes pointed
the ward
for ill souls,
soles worn out,
souls worn out,

You see, 
that's why you need to put those Gospel soles
first on your feet,
so that when you meet
those low souls in high heels,
those dirty souls in polished boots,
those important souls in cheap flats,
you can tell them where to look -

to Him Who came from on High to low -
to Him under Whose feet we live,
Who came under to wash our feet -

to Him Who walked and talked among us,
Whose sandal straps we were unworthy to untie -

to Him Whose bare feet were nailed to a tree
on a hill called Calvary,
where He bore our sin and shame -

to the Name worthy of all fame -
the Lord God -
because He is holy
and He wholly conquered death
so that we might truly live.

In Him, through Him and to Him be the glory
for this Story
though gory, but great,
because our sin-sick souls can be repaired
by His payment.

This Lord Jesus -
Who crushed Satan's head with His heel!

So how do you get these new souls...
these new soles?

And what about a wardrobe change?
It's available to all -
and no, you can't get it at the mall.

Here's how -

Christ came,
To give us (so that we might live)
His robe of righteousness -
a radiant robe, a required robe,
a blood-bought robe.

We receive this robe
in exchange for our rags
full of snags, full of tears and tears -
our rags that we have tried to wash clean
(with our rule-following
and sermon-swallowing
and guilt-wallowing)
to no avail.

You see there was this veil
(this separation because of our sin)
between the Creator and creature
that the only good God-Man came to tear.

And now we wear
this bride's veil,
clean, pristine, proper,
bought by His life-blood -
free to us but cost Him everything,
free to us but cost Him everything.

And the payment He made was complete
Because He rose back on His feet
And ascended back on high to the sky.

Now do you see
that these costly clothes
and these Gospel shoes
are the most essential items we need?

He is 
more vital than Vera Wang
more pricey than Prada
más dulce que Dolce and Gabana
more gorgeous than Gucci
more special than Kate Spades.

So, my sister, 
forget that dress for now
and address your absolute need of His blood-bought covering.
Forget that diamond ring right now
and look at the Kind King, radiant in all His sparkling splendour.
Forget those red nails and pierced ears for now
and see His nail-pierced hands, red with blood.
Forget that accessory's price
and consider the price He paid for your life.
Forget that new handbag for now,
and see His hands beckoning you, "Come!"
Forget the latest designer
and get to know your Designer.
Forget what you think you need,
because what you absolutely need is the Redeemer.

Realize that you don't just own a bunch of soles,
you are a soul.
You don't just have a body,
you are meant to be part of the body of Christ.

All of humanity
in all of our depravity
need all of His grace
poured out upon the human race!

Sisters, we're all really the same
and this life is not a game.

We need the Name above all names,
the blest One, our rest -
Jesus Christ.
And when we know Him, we will want Him more than anything else.

"What does it profit a man or woman to gain the whole world yet forfeit his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" - Jesus 

vida verdadera

Do not be lulled
to be dulled...

"The Walking Dead" is not just some TV show,
not just some parade down the street,
that will fade as a fad with time.


Know that the walking dead is a reality -
a dangerous drama diluting,
a sorry saga secluding
people from true life.
Deceiving the Eve in us,
leaving this generation lost
because lies cost.

                         Lies -

"Pretty Little Liars" we are,
wearing make up to make up
for our empty, ugly souls.
Pretty little liars -
this glamourous, clamourous giggly gig
when really -
Is not a beautiful woman with no discretion a pig?

But hey, we are caught in a worldly web,
bought by the online web
that teaches girls to reduce their waist-line
by reducing their dignity to a dime.
"Buy this!" and by this date,
you'll have a date.
"Wear this!" and where will you go?
"Drink this!" "Think this!"
Pink this, purple that.
And what does all this add up to -
a shrinking wallet, a shrinking waist-line -
but all really just a waste of time.

... So, it's time
to evangelize our souls, not trivialize.

Scriptures say something about all of this!
So, listen up because truth stays true,
And it's about time we get a clue!

"She who is self-indulgent is dead even though she lives." 

"Indulgent" - let's break it down
before we break down completely.

In - inward focused.
She says, "Time is mine."
She says, "I am totally fine."
She demands, "Give, give!" like a leech.
She warns, "Don't dare preach."

Dul(l) -
What a bore,
Always wanting more!
What's in store?
What's at the store?
Stuffed but starved,
Can't cope,
So she mopes.
Bleep (a swear word)
Beep (her phone goes)
Welcome distraction!
Click (photo)
Click (upload)
Waiting, celebrating
all the "likes" ups her rating.
Stroking her vanity,
Bordering insanity,
Eventually fed up, wanna give up...

But wait... it's a...

Gent -
She craves attention from a gent,
though he is anything but a gentleman.
But still, the thrill!
It's time to manipulate,
so she dresses as bate,
and she stays out late,
Seducing him, reducing her
to a cheap chimp,
an impulsive victim to vanity,
with a fever for fun,
a longing for love turned lust,
but she "must" just follow her heart.
"Believe in yourself" she mumbles,
as she stumbles,
as she crumbles.

Striving to be alive,
but feeling sad,
feeling bad,
going mad.

Oh, the epitome of pity -
to party then pity party!
To love yourself and feel lonely.
To trust oneself and find yourself falling short...
even in your high heels.
To laugh out loud and cry inside
To flirt and feel like dirt
To flaunt and be haunted by fear
To be noisy and nosy
To find yourself a fake
Whose flattery was all just fluff -
You're not enough.
Now you know it was all just stuff.

Now you see that
You by yourself are just a dead end.
You're on a journey...
Sure, maybe seventy years long and seemingly wide,
but in the end a pointless ride,
Swept away by the tide
of the next century.

We are like a flower that will fall,
unable to stall,
on the way to eternity.

We are like a mist that appears
then disappears
after a certain amount of years.

Do you see the "us" in dust?
We are but dust.
And our stuff will rust.

But we are souls
that will last
past these years,
past these peers.

So, logically you have some choices.
live it up or give it up.
YOLO or sink low.
Cope or mope.
                                  ... Or neither!
There is HOPE!

Yes, our name is Eve
with pride in our stride
but on the eve
of being made new...

There is a Name
Whose fame is forever.
There is a Light
Whose flame always burns.
There is a Love
Whose grace ever flows
There is a Redeemer
That cares, helps, and knows.

The Winner of sinners,
The Lover who covers our stains
With the flood of His blood

His Name is Jesus!

The Second Adam
Who gives us a second chance
The Giver of all good gifts
Let us sing and dance!

He rose up from the dead
That we might die to our-dead-end-selves
and rise with Him to truly live
To gladly give
All in exchange for His new life.

So, let's renounce our pride,
for the King of kings died.
Let's forsake our fear
for the Prince of princes came near.
Let's quit our lust
for He is a Lover to trust.
Let's kill our greed
for God meets our every need.
Let's forget our nerves
Because His child serves.
Let's give up our pathetic, puny plot
(that eventually will rot)
to the One Who gave up His throne for a cross.
Let's surrender our small, silly dream
To the everlasting Theme
of His marvelous grace to our human race.

Though the leech cries, "Give, give!"
The LORD cries louder, "Live, live!"

Thursday, 7 August 2014

the fight of faith

What do you do when days are dark...
When the nights are far too long?
You hope against hope for His spark
And wait and pray for His song.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Stupid Self-Reliance

"What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?" [1 Corinthians 4:7]

These two questions answer a lot of other questions. All is grace.

Back to the Basics

God is God. God is eternal. God is Three in One. God is good. God does good. God is holy. God is love. He is the Original. He is glorious. He made and owns and sustains everything in the entire universe. He is beautiful.

God breathed life into man and woman and called His creation very good. We enjoyed fellowship with the Best Being. We experienced His good gifts of life and love. It was bliss.

God gave humanity a free will, a choice to love Him by trusting and obeying Him. He desired lovers.

Adam and Eve chose wrongly. Humanity deliberately disobeyed. We did not have faith in His goodness and turned to our own foolish ways. "God created people to be virtuous, but they have each turned to follow their own downward path." We failed. It was bad. 

Our failure reaped due consequences - death. Our disobedience deserves separation from our perfect Creator. Sometimes we think we are not that bad, but that's because we've forgotten that He is that good! His standard for communion is holiness. He must do what is right because He is just. He cannot and will not tolerate our evil. That's bad news for us. But let's keep in mind, our loss is our fault.

BUT there is the Gospel! In His great mercy, He entered the world He made to save His people from their sins. Jesus, God Incarnate, came and lived a perfect life and suffered a painful death in our place.  He then rose again in victory, offering new life. He is called the Second Adam and through Him we have a second chance at life. That's good news for us! Our relationship is restored! And let's keep in mind, our gain is His grace!

Let us say with David, "I have no good apart from You, God." And we will be celebrating Him for eternity!

Monday, 21 July 2014

Life and Light from the Lord

"For with You is the fountain of life;
    in Your light do we see light." 
[Psalm 36:9]

You are the God who illumines,
Who gives perfect light to the blind.
You are the full fountain of life,
Who delights the heart, soul and mind.

We receive life and light from the same Source - Jesus. 
He made it all. He gives it all.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Living on Borrowed Breath

Just the other day, I had a Snapple peach tea. Mmmm! 

 There are two reasons why I enjoy this drink. For one, it's tasty, and for two, it contains a fun fact on the cap. This particular cap read "The average person has 23, 000 breaths a day." 

Think of it - we inhale and exhale thousands of times a day. About 23,000 times. Wow! And most of this breathing is involuntary. We don't think about it. It just happens. In and out, in and out, and on and on we go.

But we should think about it. We should think about where our breath comes from and why we all have it.

God's Word tells us the answer to the where and why. "He himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything." [Acts 17:24-28] "Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD (of life)." [Psalm 150:6] 

Let's remember - we walk and talk and work and play on borrowed breath.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

believing the best about the Best!

Sometimes our doubts shout lies about God. Sometimes our minds find questions about His ways. Sometimes our hearts part from His truth. Sometimes our fears smear spiritual reality. And so, we find ourselves confused, careless and even callous, all because of a big misunderstanding on our part.

This is why it is always absolutely necessary to decide to believe the best about God. Why? Because He is the best of beings! [Jonathan Edwards]

Think about it. Even during the worst of times, we try to believe the best about certain people. Why? Because we remember the qualities in them that we love. We naturally appreciate and admire generosity, truth and goodness. If we do this with fallen human creatures (who show these qualities imperfectly), how much more should we do this with our holy Creator (Who possesses and proves these qualities perfectly)?

So, we must fight the night with the light, the dark with the spark of His truth! How? By considering His character! Here's just three to start a countless list of "His best" qualities -

He owes no man anything, but gives generously to all. He loves to share!
"Who has ever given to God, that God should repay them?" Romans 11:35
"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights." James 1:17

He is always right, and He always does the right thing. He's always fair!
"Should not the Judge of all the earth do what is right?" Genesis 18:25
"For the word of the LORD is right and true." Psalm 33:4

He is always good, and He is good to all. He loves to care!
"You are good, and what You do is good." Psalm 119:68
"The LORD is good to all, and His mercy is over all that He has made." Psalm 145:9

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Someone to Sing About

I'm reading a book of meditations on the Psalms by Sam Storms, and he has this catchy quote that is helping me find freedom from my sin and joy in my God! He says that to resist the power of temptation, "simply saying 'No! No! No!' won't suffice. We must learn to say 'Oh! Oh! Oh!'" Delight beats duty in the fight for victory!

Oh! Oh! Oh! Indeed, the only right response before our oh-so-great-God! 

The bad news: We have a problem. A big problem that has made our world so small. A heart problem that has minimized the Magnificent and magnified the man. What is it? We play the fool by exalting ourselves, and instead of shutting up as the Proverbs advise, we allow for arrogance. Sure, we may not boast aloud, and we don't actually pat ourselves on the back or strut around with our chin out. But does not this peacock problem run wild in our minds at times? We indulge in our own ideas, congratulate our clever thoughts, laugh at our own jokes, compliment our accomplishments, even admire our acts of service and sing our own song. And this is wrong because we can't even make our own hearts beat. And though our physical hearts are beating, we are not truly alive. "She who is self-indulgent is dead even though she lives." (1 Timothy 5:6) So here we are drugged on self and dead.

The good news: This problem can be fixed. Our big God came to this world to give us a new heart, and by beholding Him we are changed. Only by beholding Him, we are changed. He selflessly laid down His life for our selfishness. He gloriously gave His life for our redemption. His death on the cross reversed the curse of sin and death for us! His resurrection sealed the deal! He is in the business of mending when we are in the habit of rending ourselves to Him. He has shown us His glory in the world, the Word, and the Word become flesh, and tHis glory opens our eyes to the One Who has won all things to Himself. "All is from Him, through Him, and to Him! To Him be the glory!" He is our Source, Saviour, and Sustainer. He is the exalted One! He is alive and to be adored!

So, enough of this undue worship of creation and creatures! Enough of this silly self-preoccupation! Enough of our dead-end dramas! Enough of our stupid egos and vain thoughts! Enough of this slavery to self! Enough of this small living! Enough of this claustrophobic individuality! Enough of this Reality reducing and self seducing lie that we are self-sufficient and worthy of praise. There is nothing farther from the truth.

It's time for a bigger, better, truer, sweeter celebration! It's time to worship the Creator! It's time for freedom and fullness! It's time to share a glory story that never ends! It's time for purpose and pleasure that continue forever! It's time to join hands in song and service with fellow creatures. It's time to acknowledge the only Original One. It's time to really live! It's time to give! Jesus is the truth that sets us free!

So how do we move from the dead-end of self to the unending, shared joy of God? How do we decrease? By increasingly beholding Him, and in so doing we find ourselves humbled and happy.

The totality of His truth
The vitality of His voice
The authority of His authorship
The justice of His jealously
The bigness of His beauty
The entirety of His eternity
The expanse of His excellence
The pervasiveness of His power
The persistence of His patience
The span of His splendor
The stretch of His strength
The intricacies of His imagination
The orbit of His originality
The thoroughness of His thoughtfulness
The range of His radiance
The weight of His whispers
The height of His holiness
The depth of His delight
The breadth of His breath in us
The craft of His creativity with dust
The width of His wisdom
The hugeness of His humility
The magnitude of His miracles
The wonder of His ways
The supremacy of His sacrifice
The completeness of His cry
The reality of His resurrection
The perfection of His provision
The mystery of His mercy
The greatness of His grace
The largeness of His love
The sufficiency of His Scripture
The constancy of His care
The reach of His reign
The fullness of His freedom
The song of His salvation!

So considering Who He is, let's be wise. Let's quit our silly songs about self and crank the volume of our voice to sing about Him! After all, this is the anthem hitherto and henceforth.

P.S. Yes, I am aware that I got carried away with some "alliterated" praise. And still these words are feeble offerings. He is beyond our ability to capture with the written letter, but we better do our best because He's worthy of WONDERful words. Yet, do we live wonder-filled lives?

Saturday, 1 March 2014


We are experiencing our first real rainfall of the year. Hallelujah! Ah, the cloudy, dripping skies are wonderful for so many reasons; aren't they? Girls get to sport their patterned rain boots, children break out their quirky umbrellas, and we all get to puddle jump and pretend we're in the beloved musical, "Singin' in the Rain." We turn off the music to hear the raindrops tap dance on the roof, and we open the blinds to see the raindrops splatter across and streak down the window glass. We go outside to breathe in the fresh air and watch the ground drink up every drop. We laugh at our fellow West Coasters awkwardly handle these contraptions called umbrellas and do our best not to poke somebody's eye out. We frantically try to remember how to operate our windshield wipers and drive at granny-speeds. We even plan a day to enjoy a day at home, complete with cozy socks and vegetable soup.

What's not to love, right? But you know what we should love most of all? Hosea's ancient but true words - "He comes to us like rain!" So refreshing, so He is! And even when this rain storm passes through our state, He reigns over all still. So we really do have a reason to sing in the rain, sing under His reign!

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

the right route

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight.”

I am sure this verse is in our heads, as it is on many a Christian greeting card, but has it travelled that long distance to our hearts? Has it arrived into our souls?

Our way seems often weary as we tread life on earth – crooked paths, dead ends, twisting roads, long lulls, steep hills, dry valleys… "That which is crooked cannot be made straight," we feel along with Solomon.

God Himself sympathizes with our plight, for He humbled Himself to walk thirty-plus years between towns and carpenter shops and homes, and ultimately to a cross, where His weary feet were nailed in our place – “for the joy set before Him, He endured." 

Consider, the earth which was His footstool was imprinted with His footsteps, and His feet were imprinted with nails. He walked each step of our road of suffering, and in so doing, He redeemed our route in every way. He detoured us from our destruction, and He opened up the blocked way to God. And this path though narrow be, leads to wide joy everlasting at His feet. 

Following in His footsteps, let us meet the next step with a heart humble, in place of a mumble, because He took our place that we might see His face calling us home. We must remember that we do not roam like wanderers; we’re heading Home in wonder of His reception. We need not crumble at the cracks; we need not stumble over the steep, because “He makes our feet like the feet of a deer; He causes us to stand on the heights.” And though we trip, we will not slip, for when we said, "My foot is slipping," the LORD’s unfailing love supported us. And when we feel limp and lame, we will claim, “My feet stand on level ground.” And we will not be lost, because "the Lord shall continually guide us." And our feet are energized with purpose now, wherever they go. "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring His good news!" 

No more of this unraveling, 

Get back to this traveling – home.

No more of this stalling,

Get back to His calling – home.

No more of this wandering,

Get back to pondering – home.

No more of this racing,

Get back to praising – Him.

No more of this solo riding,

Get back to Him – guiding.

No more of this fearing,

Get back to revering – Him.

No more of this reserving,

Get back to Him – deserving,

Of all praise, glory, and honour,

Forever and ever, amen.

Of course, there are tests and trials along the way. “He is the way” though! Hear His blessed words, “I will go before you, and make the crooked places straight.” Our destination is sure; our journey is accompanied; our Companion is resilient. 

Onward and upward, in step with His Spirit, my fellow travelers. “He knows the way we take.”

Saturday, 4 January 2014

365 / 36:5

2014 is here!

Maybe you toasted to it half-heartedly because 2013 broke your heart. Or perhaps you ushered it in with cheers.

Well, either way, believe it or not, ready or not - it's true. The calendars have changed, and we're well under way. Yet, lest we think 2014 is merely another big block of time to do some big things, we must remember that 2014 is really 365 small DAYS, and days are made of hours and hours are made of minutes.

C.S. Lewis well put, “The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of sixty minutes an hour, whatever they do, whoever they are.” The "there and then" will eventually, inevitably be the "here and now."

So let us bravely meet this minute, use this present well because of His presence. The past need not be some ghost haunting, nor the future some monster daunting. Surely changes will come, but surely God's unchanging love is here. Certainly tomorrows will have sorrows, but certainly God's joy in the morning and mourning is dependable. Without fail, we will fail, but God has not, does not, will not. 

However you met midnight on the first of this new year, there is no reason to fear about the future. You can say "Come what may!" because God has come and is coming again! 

let our hearts 
inflate once more 
with Gospel hope 
to more than cope,
to triumph 
with His help!

Happy 2014! Cheers to no fears and all faith!

Oh and I find it funny that the same numbers that make up the days in the year make up the very verse we need to heed. Psalm 36:5 -

"Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens,
    Your faithfulness to the skies."