Light for the Coming Darkness

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Light on a hill

Where there looms fear,
There is need for drawing close to God.
Where there is no fear,
We invest little in prayer.

Where there is grief,
There is need for hope.
Where there is no sorrow,
We grip tightly to the present instead of Jesus.

Where there is doubt.
There is a need for faith
Where doubt does not exist,
There is little need to exercise faith.

Where there is love and forgiveness,
There is passionate devotion.
Where there is no love there is indifference,
and indifference makes the heart grow hard.

Where there is horrid ugliness
There is a longing for innocence.
Where people accept the grotesque,
There is no desire for salvation.

All the doubt, the fear, the sorrow, the ugliness does not show the absence of God, but quite to the contrary … Shows our need for Him.

In this world you will have trouble. But take heart I have overcome the world. – Jesus John 16:33

The Law of Unless

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Water flows to the law of gravity, and it is beautiful

Unless the Lord builds the house,
its builders labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
the watchmen stand guard in vain. Psalm 127:1

Unless the Lord controls our every thought, we degrade into what we hate.
Unless the Lord builds our life, we step back from being God’s temple.
Unless the Lord is our undivided desire, we become inflamed with lust.
Unless we humbly walk with God, our pride leads us to walk away.
Unless we forgive as we are forgiven, we become what we cannot forgive.
Unless we offer up thanksgiving for all God has done, we miss out on all He wants to do.
Unless we honor God, we lose our understanding of what is honorable.
Unless God gives us wisdom, we cannot discern what is foolish.
Unless we glorify God, we will become inglorious.
Unless we gaze upon the beauty of the Lord, our vision will fill with the sordid.
Unless we run to God our refuge, our fears will overtake us.
God wants to mold us into the image of the Son. All else is vain.

Days I Did Not Ask For

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He is risen

So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. (Luke 11:9-10)

You said to ask and you shall receive.
But You gave me days I did not ask for.

Days with heartache, days of pain,
Days I can’t walk ‘cause I’m lame.
Days overwhelmed with my tears.
Days when I run chased by my fears.

Days of toil with no relief.
Days of suffering cavernous grief.
Please tell me why?…Don’t let me doubt.
Is it something I did, or left out?

Days that go in the wrong direction.
Suffering betrayal and rejection.
“My Father, if it is possible, take this cup from me.
Yet not as I will, but as You will.” (Matthew 26:29)

In the breeze, oh so slight,
Your prayer of anguish that fateful night.
You asked for my days, and did atone,
Cut off from God in death…alone.

Startled, I realize You walked this path.
You stepped in to take sin’s wrath.
Giving up life to the Father’s glory,
You came down to alter my story.

I now have hope on my darkest day,
You hold me close through the fray.
To guide me where I cannot see,
I must depend on You, and not on me.

Thank You for days I did not ask for.

The Wonder of Grace

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The Grace of Winter White

The Wonderful Grace of Jesus

For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. Romans 5:17

The best and the greatest of this world cannot replace it.
The worst and most painful cannot spoil it.
The wonderful grace of Jesus.

There is no imagined splendor that can outshine it.
There is no ugliness that can diminish it.
The beautiful grace of Jesus.

There is no stronghold it cannot topple.
There is no past it cannot overcome.
The redeeming grace of Jesus.

There is no intelligence that can understand it.
The smallest child can receive it.
The all-encompassing grace of Jesus.

There is no life in living without it.
There is no death in life with it.
The joyous grace of Jesus.

There is no day that can be lived without it.
There is no day that will outlive it.
the enduring grace of Jesus.

A bruised reed he will not break,
And a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. (Isaiah 42:3)
The loving grace of Jesus.

The grace of Jesus gives redemption and purpose for my yesterdays.
The grace of Jesus gives me help and direction for today.
The grace of Jesus gives me hope for tomorrow.

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8

Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:8-10 NLT

Grace takes the all the things we suffer—the self inflicted, as well as what has been inflicted upon us, and redeems it for His glory through His grace.

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:8-10

I do not thank God for my past mistakes and failures; I thank Him for His grace that frees me from them, and works to redeem the harm I have caused.

O the wonder of God’s grace.

Dawn of Revelation

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Morning beauty

 

I have no great thoughts,
but I know wonderful revelation is out there.
There are colors to enthrall the eyes still to put on canvas.
There is music that will lift the heart, but awaits a composer.
There are poems to inspire the soul, that remain unreleased.
There is great beauty that will captivate the beholder,
but we have lost our purity to take it in and give it away.
I need clear eyes to see, unstopped ears to hear.
A clean heart to bow before the Lord and receive all he wants me to know.
This gives me hope.
I pause from my daily activities,
and pray for God’s Holy Spirit,
to come upon me,
and make His glory known.

“No eye has seen,
no ear has heard,
no mind has conceived
what God has prepared for those who love him”—
but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.
1 Corinthians 2:9-10

Deep Calling

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Whales spouting in Glacier Bay Alaska

When my soul is downcast,
when my way seems in decline.
I’ll remember a beautiful place,
where Your deep love called to mine.

A place of water and mountains,
of raven, and eagle, and bear,
whales spouting, ice cracking, the breathing
of Your wonderful cold clear air.

A place where I gazed on Your splendor,
and knew Your great love for me.
Giving me hope in my troubles,
That one day in Your presence I’ll be.

Poem by Stephen Hufman based on Psalm 42

Memories of Tomorrow

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Foretaste of glory

Yesterday we had so much fun,
the joy that children bring.
To have the laughter never end,
In songs we love to sing.

Visit cut short, I wanted longer.
So many seeds to sow
Time consumes the love we shared,
Forgotten as they grow.

In that day when life moves on,
I hope not in fading sorrow.
But in the love of Jesus Christ
Who makes yesterday a foretaste of tomorrow.

In Jesus we have a sure hope that our tomorrows will be even better than our yesterdays.

We put our hope in the Lord.
He is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord,
for our hope is in you alone. Psalm 33:20-22

Being What You Were Created to Be

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What a wonder to see.

Turtles floating in the water,
Being all the turtle they can be.
Day after day they join the chorus.
A wondrous sight for me to see.
Turtles being turtles,
Floating out in the sea.

Oh Lord, help me to be,
All that You want to see done in me.
A wondrous sight for You to see.
Oh Lord, You living in me.

When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,… Psalm 8:3-4

…the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Colossians 1:26-27

Redwoods of Mount Hermon, CA

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I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree. J.Kilmer

A poem for National Poetry Month

When I see a child’s happy face,
It reminds me of a different place.
A child of an innocent age,
But now, time has turned the page.

Fading memory my only measure,
Longing for that long lost treasure.
I see it faintly in my dreams,
What could have been is all it means.

Wars and famine crush and rake,
Leaving sadness in their wake.
Such joy lost, the world has taken,
Bewildered children left forsaken.

To carry this burden of what was lost,
Squandered purity, a terrible cost.
I had no idea how much it mattered,
Joy and peace so quickly scattered.

Can anything undo what’s been done?
Bring back the child to play and run.
Roll back time before I knew,
The terrible taste of that cursed brew.

With great love God became the key,
Stooping down He rescued me.
He offered His life exchanged for mine,
Pure and holy no end with time.

Now I dance before my Lord.
His love my banner not the sword.
Held secure above the fray,
Purest joy with no decay.

Come all who thirst for water clear,
Drink in His life; wash away the fear.
Let God write your poem anew,
Sparkling glory of God in you.

by Stephen Hufman

The Full Measure of Life

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Reflecting the Creator

Of this life what shall we measure?
Is it time or is it treasure?
Beauty, fame or accomplishment?
Result in choking compliment.
These become for us gods, dressed as goals,
And bring forth pride, to become deep holes.

To be like Him should be our hope,
faith and love a heavenward slope.
Thus reflecting the Lord in all his glory,
And have His light become your story.
Can only be borne upon a tree,
All of Him and none of me.

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.  Ephesians 3:17-19