Tuesday, February 14, 2006

A Psalm for My Love IV

Even if I don’t know what it means to love you, even if I don’t know how to love you, Lord, You’ve never left me. Thank You. Thank You. Thank You, Father. You loved me first. Thank You, Lord.

Father, how freeing is Your love! You’ve traded my shackles for wings, a prison for flight. So many times in each day I forget this and behave as if I still bore all my own burdens: things to accomplish, situations to control, and an endless fatigue and disappointment when I can’t do it all to my unrealistic expectations. But through You, Jesus, I am released. Released from my own standards and the world’s. Released from worry. Released to Joy.

Released to Joy

Running as fast as I can through life
Each day blurs by,
Leaving an impression rather than a memory.
Eternity is mine,
Although you wouldn’t know it by watching.
Slowly, slowly, My child.
Everyday is a gift I give.
Don’t let life steal My joy from you.

Just as You promised—a way out.
Our victory over death
You cleverly hid in a man condemned—for who would guess that death would die through death?


Oh Father! Remind me each day:
--That You forgive me forever
--That You are bigger than suffering and bigger than sin
--That You are with me no matter where and no matter what
--That You have released me to joy

Never let me forget that You love me, not for anything I’ve done or will do, but because I am Your Gwen. And that is enough.

In Jesus’ precious name, I lift this all up to You. May it bless You, Father.

I love You. Happy Valentine’s Day.

A Psalm for My Love III

When my heart is breaking You hold the pieces. When my spirit is exhausted, You support me. When I feel so alone, You surround me. There is no place I could go that You wouldn’t have been there first, preparing for me, awaiting me, waiting to embrace me.

With Thou

When troubles at my door do pound,
And fear and weakness swirl around,
My heart will tremble; still I know
With Thou before me I shall go

I step up to the airy edge
And peer down from this crumbling ledge.
I wish to run, but still I know
With Thou beside me I shall go

My past creeps up on me at night,
Confronts me with more wrong than right
My soul feels black but still I know
With Thou behind me I shall go

The door flings open, blinding light
Surrounds me. I give up the fight.
The price is paid so that I’ll know
With Thou within me I shall go.

A Psalm for My Love II

Over and over, you forgive me. Before I was born, before I was thought of, You had forgiven me. How can we fully understand that it’s nothing that we’ve done? That it doesn’t matter how good we are on the surface, for we are all sinners through and through. Yet You overcame that and You, sometimes gently, sometimes abruptly, lead us to that realization—that You are bigger than sin and pain and suffering, even if You sometimes have to use sin and pain and suffering to get our attention.

Suit of Sin

I wear a suit of sin that squeezes on my heart. Some days it’s so tight, I feel as if my heart would break. And break it does, over and over again. But there is beauty in its brokenness, for as it bursts, it pours forth light. As it shatters, I am fixed. The bigger the break, the more I am filled by something better than myself. And it hurts, oh how it hurts. But the One who made me lives in my heart and nothing could be better than to slough the dull casing and allow the Love that formed the universe, the Love that sacrificed all, flow like blood in my veins, shine like a torch into my darkness.

A Psalm for My Love I

My roommate and I, being single, decided to dedicate Valentine's Day to God and wrote psalms to celebrate His love. Here's mine, broken into parts cuz it's LOOOONG! It fits together really well, though, so if you have a spare 15 mins, I recommend reading it all together! The structure is pretty much intro, then a poem, then a transition then another poem or bit of free verse...


What is a day dedicated to love if it is not a day dedicated to Christ? For who could truly love without Him? We, dirty in our sin, would be forever separated from the Author of love. We could never be reconciled to God without the ultimate price of His son, the death that gives us new life each day, life without limit, regardless of what we’ve done.

77 x 7

Chance after chance and time after time,
I’ve stumbled on my feet
and fallen on my face.

But I’ll have to ask for forgiveness again,
For tomorrow’s a new day…

And here I come crawling back to You
So full of shame I can’t look at You
But You knew this from the beginning of time
You’ve waited to say, “Come to Me, love, you’re mine.
I’ve got your heart in My hands—you’ll be fine.
It’s all part of My grand design.”

And You knew this,
Didn’t You?

Sunday, February 05, 2006

The Water Bearer

“No,” He pushes my hand away, weakly but with certainty. “I don’t need it. I’m fine.”

Even as he speaks, his lips are cracking. His skin looks dusty, and his hair is falling out in chunks. “Goway,” he slurs. As he stumbles to get up, my eyes gloss over. Three tears fall to earth and are gobbled up by the thirsty ground. Would that my friend do the same…

I am the Water Bearer, even when the thirsty do not choose to drink. I cannot force them, like that old proverb about horses says. But in this case, I cannot lead them anywhere; I come to them. My gift is free and my gift is for all. But most people don’t realize that their lips are bleeding, that their eyes are dilated, their skin hardening. Everything around them is withering and dying; to them everything’s normal. They do not realize they need water to live.

“Friend, take this cup. It will help, I promise.” I extend my hand once again.

“I said NO!” He struggles to shift from his knee to standing, his supporting leg swaying like a palm on the beach. “I’m not thirsty!” he croaks. “I just need to stand up…”

With each cup I offer comes the promise of restoration, rejuvination, replenishment. The water refreshes not only the tongue but slides its way between the cells of the body, plumping and repairing—my water fills the empty spaces.

He grabs for that tree, for those rocks, something solid to pull himself up with, but they are useless mirages. He looks around, but we are alone in this wasteland, save another man, tiny on the horizon. He slumps back to the ground, aware for the first time that standing is hard without help. “Maybe just a little,” he mumbles. I hold out the cup again. He draws it to his face, eyes trained on the ground the entire time. But instead of drinking it, he lifts the cup high and pours my water over his head. Little rivers stream down his face, and he closes his eyes. His parched lips part in a crack of a smile. But even as I watch, the water disappears, evaporating into the arid desert air. His smile fades as the cool is replaced by the same old dryness. Except this time, because he knows water now, he can feel it. He thrusts the empty glass at me, waggling it around. “More!” he cries, as the heat returns. He still avoids my gaze.

My cup is not to be taken lightly. My cup is not to be squandered. It revives so long as it is truly tasted. Occasional splashes do nothing but make misery more apparent. My water refills, but you must offer your body, your vessel, to be refilled. It is a commitment.

“Friend, so long as you choose to waste my water, you will never be satisfied for long. The water must become a part of you. Please drink.” I offer him the glass, refilled to the brim, but he just sits there. I know what he’s thinking—who are you to tell me what to do? I just needed a little refreshing. One more glass to splash on my face and I’ll be fine. But I know he’s also thinking about how fleeting the pleasure was, and how, even after that, he can’t stand up. He reaches out and accepts my offer. As the cup trembles toward his lips, light sparkles off the water. The reflection dances on his face and I smile.

I refill his cup as quickly as he drains it. Over and over, in great gulps he drinks, like a man falling in love for the first time. He doesn’t waste a drop.

He looks up at me with new eyes, glistening now instead of dull. I can see my reflection in them as I extend my hand. “Come.” I point into the distance. “I think our friend over there is thirsty…”