Worship Live, Alive!

I want song and dance
Before the Ancient of Days
Not shirt and tie ways

I cannot sit still
My heart and soul want to feel
My mind needs to heal

Oh, the living God
Spirit of life I do crave
As I tread this sod

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Bramble Bush Christian

You play your golf on the country club course
As an expensive source of pleasure, but then
Turn your back on the beggar with no remorse;
You eat your ribeye steak and drink fine wine,
But never consider the starving child
In the cold, wild streets of your city;
You have no pity, no remorse for the course
You have taken in life, and never think twice
About vice as you sit in your nice, plush pew
In church and only lurch forward in sleep,
Then awaken to peep at your golden watch,
Counting the time till the church bells chime;
You pay half your tithe and care even less;
After all, the mess in the world’s not your fault;
It’s the worthless bums and scum of the earth
Who persist to insist on homes, food and water,
And you curse at their plight as you nurse anger,
Hoping they’ll eventually take flight elsewhere,
But you do pray and pay your bills and play
With your kids after making your best bids
On the next football game, and pride yourself
For taming your bad appetites (mostly, at least)
Claiming fame in the community as a good man,
An unsullied citizen, honorable community man,
An elder in the congregation,
Who votes right in every election,
And . . .
You’re no more than a bramble bush Christian!

Figs are not gathered from thorns, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush.
Gospel of Luke 6. 44


Note: Originally published in September 2016, now republished due to some renewed interest as well as for new reader-followers (as, hopefully, an humble blessing.) Peace to one and all!

Upon One Sunday Morn

And one more ordeal is thankfully over now
And angels sing ‘hallelujah’ as my head I bow
In thanksgiving for strength and, too, just how
Kind you have been again to see me through
Another trial in time till noon the clock chimed
Though this morning was also filled with good
And I shouldn’t complain as there was no pain
But ultimately only gain for my soul
With its bowl to be filled with praise
Yet I have to wonder why I blunder each week
And ask myself if I’m not meek enough to seek
Your face where ere I may be and to see you
Ah! But you are with me, too, inside and out
And all about, and I am just thankful for this:
That you never leave me nor forsake me . . .

Fear Not, I Am Near

Weary of walking down this lonesome road
I see church steeples rise high into blue sky
And wonder why I can’t go in to begin again
But then I hear your strong, gentle voice . . .

Don’t be afraid; I’m right beside you to guide you,
To protect you even as I continue to perfect you;
Do not give in to fear, for I Am near . . . I Am near

Powers are seated in high places unreachable
And I’m standing in stagnant air unbreathable
As I keep beating on so very many shut doors
With my eyes cast down in sorrow to the floor

And how much will my resume pay?
Oh, and what can I do for you today?
And where do I turn to make a way?
Many queries but I hear you say . . .

Don’t be afraid; I’m right beside you to guide you,
To protect you even as I continue to perfect you;
Do not give in to fear, for I Am near . . . I Am near

Weary of walking down this lonesome road
I see church steeples rise high into blue sky
And wonder why I can’t go in to begin again
But then I hear your strong, gentle voice . . .

Don’t be afraid; I’m right beside you to guide you,
To protect you even as I continue to perfect you;
Do not give in to fear, for I Am near . . . I Am near
Do not give in to fear, for I Am near . . . I Am near
Do not give in to fear, for I Am near . . . I Am near

But I Praise You . . .

Lord Jesus, I fear the future with an awful, deep dread,
And I feel like a man who is already on the inside dead,
Though I know you’ve raised me up with You forever
And forever is a long time that never ends yet I shake!

Oh, Lord Jesus, I am now a man without any real home,
And I could write a tome about a weight of tribulation,
And how, in retrospection, I really ruined my whole life
But here I am now crying out and trying to reach You!

But I praise you for the sunshine, blue skies, soft clouds
And breeze so fine, and a bed – a place to lay my head –
And all that You have spoken to me and your great plans
And mercy You have shone; you have heard my groans

Do You have a plan for me as I lay me wholly before You?
Will You pick up the pieces of me, put me back together
Into what You want me to be? Can You still use even me?
This I ask as the future looks quite dim and very grim!

But I praise you for the sunshine, blue skies, soft clouds
And breeze so fine, and a bed – a place to lay my head –
And all that You have spoken to me and your great plans
And mercy You have shone; you have heard my groans

Out of pain with stains on my heart I write these words,
And the strain upon my soul is too much for me to carry;
Some sign or word of comfort I seek, now meek and lowly
As I slowly rise to my feet to pace this floor once again!

But I praise you for the sunshine, blue skies, soft clouds
And breeze so fine, and a bed – a place to lay my head –
And all that You have spoken to me and your great plans
And mercy You have shone; you have heard my groans

. . . You have heard my groans and mercy You have shown

An Implosion of the Soul

An implosion from disruption of the soul
As the weight of waiting weighs heavily
And the events of the world spin round
And my spirit feels bound
As these devils hound me
So I cry for relief in belief
There is something more
But I am sore pressed to even get dressed
As my life seems to dwindle into nothings
And I wonder if I am not a kind of blunder
Cut asunder from all the rest of humanity
But I know you hear my cry
And you never say goodbye
So I must try again this day
To make my way your way
As your Spirit pieces me together in peace
To be what you have ever meant me to be!

Prayer of the Called

Do you want me to help heal the brokenhearted?
To bind up wounds and to announce your favor?
To set free those long in the prison of darkness?
Oh, this broken vessel, Lord, and very tarnished!
Are you picking up all the pieces
To make of me what I think I see?
I would be a salvaged wreck preaching to saints!
And you know I traveled down that road before,
When I was younger and prideful and so selfish;
And what legacy did I leave behind me but ashes?
And do you want to use me now, Lord? Even me?
Oh God! You have saved me from certain death;
You know you can do with me what you please,
But what church would accept me as a shepherd?
Ah! But I believe in you and what you want to do,
Only give me a sure and certain sign of your will;
For here am I; I will go wherever you send me . . .