I have shared this poem before, but somehow, as I see the strange twist and turns that this world it taking, and as I remember the loved ones who are now sleeping in their grave waiting for the Lord to return, my heart aches with a deeper desire than ever for that glorious day of victory. And my yearning heart cries out more than ever, Lord come soon and rescue us from sin!
Today there is a deep heaviness upon my heart. I have spent a large portion of the day remember those I love who have been taken from me by the cold hand of death. As I think of those wonderful days so full of joy, my aching heart fills with a longing for that wonderful day when death will be a distant memory. And every fiber of my body screams, come dear Lord. Come soon and rescue us from the misery of death and sin!
As of late, circumstances in my personal life and the world around, have filled my mind with a deep longing for my heavenly home. My heart aches as I see how deeply divided we have become, and consider how different things might have been if only we would give our stubborn hearts to God. Under His gentle guiding, He would slowly peel away our selfish natures and transform us into His loving image.
Bit by bit, and day by day, we would come to look upon our neighbors not only as brothers and sisters in the Lord, but as cousins who share the same blood line first in Adam and Eve, and once more in the family of Noah. Filled with the love of God and guided by His command to love our neighbors/ family as we would ourselves, the hatred and distrust that seems to be taking hold of society would melt away. And this world would be transformed into a very amazing place.
But sadly our hearts are selfish and we recoil at the thought of leaving the wide and easy path to trod the narrow path of self-discipline. All to often we find it so easy to point the finger at the other party and say, its your fault. You are not trusting enough, you are filled with hate, you do not understand, you do not care, but we forget that deep down, our thoughts are not so different. So as wonderful as it would be to behold the walls of prejudice and hate fall down, because selfishness has taken control, the peace and brotherhood that I long for must wait until Jesus returns and forever brings an end to sin.
Here is a poem inspired by my longing for that wonderful day when hate and envy will forever be no more, and at last it can truly be said that we are one.
Hurray for the weekend! I am so glad that it is finally here. It has been a hard week of pushing myself through the fatigue to spend a few minutes here and there trying to get something accomplished. At times it seemed to take every ounce of strength I had to accomplish the smallest task. And for what?
Though I put forth my best effort, nothing I did seemed to workout. After spending hours pushing myself to the limit, even though I know the results will be hours of intense pain, I find myself still standing in the same unenviable place of total dependence upon my parents for my food, clothing, shelter, and medical care.
Some weeks are not so bad. The effort required takes a little less toll, and by God’s grace I enjoy a minuscule reward. But on weeks like this the effort exerted and the total lack of results rise up before me, and I cannot help but feel like my life has been a failure. As I consider the hours of sweat and tears, the times I pushed myself out of a warm bed at 4 AM, went 12 plus hours without food, all in the hopes of becoming a productive member of society, all in the hopes of one day proudly being able to turn around and take care of my parents like they had me. And see that despite my faithful hours of study, and persevering effort, I have yet to take one step forward, I cannot help but wonder, what was the worth? What was the reason for my existence? If every effort in my life was going to result in failure, why is that God created me?
It is because of frustrating and rather depressing weeks where I spent ten hours sweltering, and seemed to end up taking five steps backward, that this poem was written. As I looked back at my life of constant trying, and wondered, if something happened to me, what would my legacy be? What will the world and those whom I love remember? Is it possible that even though to human eyes my life may appear to be nothing but loss and failure, that one day, when I stand before the judgement throne, that seeming loss will actually be shown to be a success?
I hope that you enjoy this humble poem of contemplation. And that it causes you to examine your heart and life, to determine what your legacy will be. And to ask yourself if on the day of judgment your life will prove to be a success or failure.
For the past few months, the world as we know it has spun into chaos. Our eyes, our ears, and our hearts have been overwhelmed by words of fear and scenes most terrifying to behold. From the threat of an invisible killer to the hungering flames consuming homes and business’s our senses have been overwhelmed with the realization that our world is in danger of spinning out of control and descending into a heart stopping chaos.
At times is feels as if every pillar of our society, and every thread of the fabric that holds our society together is being torn apart. From the familiar rhythm of society, the comfort of the daily routine, to our favorite corner shop, all has been pulled out from under us. Leaving behind a sense of confusion as we blindly seek to inch our way around this unfamiliar world where every landmark has been or is in the process of being removed.
No matter what side you stand on, these times have a power to impress the heart with its deepening sense of uncertainty and humble us with the realization of how fragile is the framework of the world we like to believe is iron strong. Overnight our society went from reaching new heights, robust and seemingly unbreakable, to shuttered and broken. In a matter of days we tumbled from a financial pinnacle to a financial dump. Truly it can be said of the last few weeks that men’s hearts are failing them for fear and love of mankind for their fellow man, is indeed in the process of growing cold.
During theses trying times, it is worth taking a moment to be grateful for one bright spot. And that is that even during this nightmarish times, there are those who are willingly to lay their all on the line. That there are those who are willing to face the ire of the mob, to endure the scorn of the crowd, who are willing to endure threats, insults, and and to be pelted by rock and bricks, knowing that their very life is on the line.
Why? Just to save the lifeless bones of an ancient building or to keep a pile of bauble from becoming useless ruble? No, but to save that which is most important, the lives of their fellow man. To these heroes, who race towards the devouring flame, I dedicate these humble words of thanks.
There is something about the ending of the old and the beginning of the new year that causes us to pause for a moment and reflect upon our lives and to ask ourselves the all important question, is my life a success? Have I made the right choices and earned the right to call my life a success?
With great in trepidation we pull out the familiar yard stick and measure our lives with those of our friends and neighbors. Fully believing that if we can check all of the right boxes, we can stand among the proud, the few, and declare that we have earned the coveted award of success.
The problem is, that no matter how many boxes we check off, the badge of success seems to elude us. We might have a beautiful home and family, have earned the love and devotion of our dearest loved ones, and for a moment we bubble over with pride, confident that we have reached the coveted mark. But then we turn and look at those around us and realize that while our house is lovely, it is not nearly as nice as so and so, that our furniture is plain and drab when compared to our neighbor, and that our income is a mere pittance when compared with that of our sister or brother.
Suddenly, as we compare ourselves with those around us, the warm glow of delight fades and a cold chill of hopelessness takes hold. As we realize that no matter how hard we strive, no matter how hard we try, we cannot grasp that elusive star called success.
Sadly, as long as our measuring tape is viewing our accomplishments against that of others, as long as we make the keeping up with the Jones our mark of success, we will never be able to look with satisfaction upon our lives. Because no matter how hard we strive, no matter how far we climb, there will always be some corner of our life where we will find that someone is standing taller and walking a few steps ahead.
Unfortunately we have come to believe that success is being the richest, the brightest, the fastest rising member of our circle. But this view is like a pile of fools gold glimmering in the noonday sun. It is full of glamour and glitz, but the pursuit of it will leave you feeling hollow, stressed, empty, and burdened down with disappointment.
Instead of taking out the chart and comparing every corner of our lives with those around us, it would be far more valuable to take out the measuring stick and take a good hard look at ourselves. To study where we have grown, and where we have come up short. To look and see how many times we have fallen hard and gotten up. How many times we have made an embarrassing mistake, and even though we wanted to run away from the discomforting glare of the crowd, stuck it out and determinedly got the job done.
Because as wonderful as it would be to taste the success of landing the dream job that will allow us to buy the life that we desire, it is far more valuable to become a success at knowing when to stand our grown, of gaining the muscles of endurance that will allow us to build a relationship with those we love that can stand the bitterest trials of life, and to fall flat on our face, and pick ourselves up and stand firm and tall.
Just Another Baby
By Katherine B. Parilli
Long ago in a barn hewn out of rocks a young mother gave birth. There was no doctor or scurrying nurses to attend to her. Only her husband, a carpenter by trade. When here little child was born, there was no soft and warm cradle to lay Him in only a manger full of hay.
To human eyes and hearts it seemed to be the birth of another poor child in an already crowded world. Yet, unseen by any human eye, thousands upon thousands of angels waited breathlessly for this humble birth. Then all heaven rang with glorious songs of praise as the baby boy was gently laid in the pale mother’s arms.
With the tender awe of every new mother, she counted His tiny toes and fingers. Quietly she whispered His name as she laid her precious bundle in a manger to sleep. As the young mother and her husband watched the precious infant sleep, angels kept careful guard. Their hearts filled with awesome wonder of their adored leader who willingly had lowered Himself. Who had left a perfect world, the beauty of never dying flowering meadows, majestic forest, choirs raised in perfect chords, and the glorious throne where He sat next to the Father as countless perfect beings worshiped Him with solemn joy.
That He would leave it all to come to a world laden with sin. A place so dark and dreary full of misery, hate, and death. That He would leave it all to become a lowly human baby, and grow into a man well accustomed with sorrow. Someday to hang on a cross for a race of people who had forfeited the right to life so they might have a way to live.
Love, praise, and adoration filled their hearts as they watched their sleeping King. A little baby sleeping peacefully in a smelly manger as the new parents looked on. Just another baby in an over crowded world, or was He?
Its that time of year when we take a few moments to pause and thank our fathers for all of the things, big and small, that they do for us throughout the year, and to take some time to lovingly recall all the ways that they have sacrificed in order to make our lives better. As this special day of thanks to Father’s draws nears, I want to pause and take a moment to thank not only my Father, but the millions of selfless Father’s who willingly put their dreams on the back burner in an effort to make their children’s dreams come.
Unfortunately we tend to pass by your hard labor and save our words of thanks for this one fleeting day. But though we all to often fail of giving you words of gratitude in due season, I want to take this moment to say, thank you for your love and watch care. And to let my own Father know how much I appreciate his patient love and care.
Happy Mother’s Day everyone! And a very special thank you to my Mother and Grandmother. Sadly I do not have the money to take you out to lunch or buy you flowers, but I would like to show you my appreciation by sharing this little poem thanking you and all the selfless mothers who work so hard throughout the year by giving up many of your own comforts so that our lives will be a little bit better. Thank you so much and may God repay you for all that you have done.
And a very special Mother’s Day to my own Mother. I want to say thank you for the hard work that you do all year to make my life and the life of each member of our family more comfortable and productive than what it would be. May God bless your many tears and prayers on our behalf.
Summer, that great time of year when warm breezes blow and sunny days beckon one and all to roam a vibrant green world as busy birds flutter through the trees singing their merry song of life. Where visions of melodic waves crashing against the shore and refreshing dips in cool ocean waters fill the imagination.
But for me summer is a time of frustration. As the thermostat rises and the humidity climbs so does the deep ache in my bones. Instead of lounging in a chair by the refreshing waters of a crystal clear pool, summer finds me curled up in a tight ball with a steam of tears threatening to run down my pain contorted cheeks. And in sorrow I watch from the sidelines as the days of summer slip away, never to return.
Frustrated I dream of long walks by the ocean, and of typing by the pool as I sip a refreshing glass of ice cold pineapple fruit shake. My hot brow desperate wishing for the chance to cool off in a shady corner of the pool, even though I know that my achy bones would never allow it.
Haunted by images of the life I long for and worn out by the increasingly debilitating ache that sores with the thermometer, disappointment threatens to engulf me. Oh how I long for a normal life, to know the joy of living with strength and purpose instead of tip toeing around my endless discomfort. As I look at my empty platter and think about how empty my life is of the active joy that I long for, a deep depression threatens to take hold.
But it is at this moment that God in His mercy steps in. With tender love He points my throbbing head upward and reminds me that trying as these days of frustration are, this need not be my unhappy end.With love he reminds me of the promise that one day soon I may rise like a mighty eagle unhampered by the chains of pain that currently hold me back.
Slowly, as I take my eyes off my current suffering and by faith behold the glorious days of promise, my frustration gives way to joy. And although pain still racks my body, my heart begins to sing songs of praise. As my imagination is carried past the fleeting dreams of an earthly summer and carried to that which shall stand the test of time. No longer concentrating upon the sorrow of having been born into a world of pain, I look ahead to that precious day when the clouds do part to reveal a vast host of angels whose song makes the world to tremble. And at last my weary burdens I shall be able to put down, as with the freedom of endless youth I bounce, and a heart filled with joy I fall before my Redeemer and pour out my soul in gratitude that my days of pain and heartache He melted away and transformed into the wonder of the dawn of endless, pain free youth!