Say Something

For many years I’ve been dismayed at the slow drift of the English language in its common use. I can usually push that dismay aside, only to be rudely awakened to it when reading a classic piece of literature from a long gone era.

I long for richness and depth in a single sentence. I crave clarity and specific intent in speech.

So I appreciated this.

From the Archives: Son of the Father (A Poem)

The old man’s fingers trembled
As his body took the strain
Not from the load he carried
But the weight of words that stained.
Words that robbed, words that cut
Words that tore and hung.
“My ways are not your ways Father
A new life I have begun”.

This soul’s ache, this tear, this throb
Had not always been this way.
Now his heart rolled back the clouds
To sit in brighter day,
When age and youth sat, as it were,
In unified desire
With single breath and matchless hope
Awaiting their Messiah.

Slow the years seemed as
Age and youth grew longer.
One content to object in quiet
While the other’s zeal grew stronger.
So here stands age, with trembling hand
Gazing from an empty door
His dreams had gone. His only son.
Just questions for what’s in store.

Years fell away with unspoken words
And memories of jaded dreams.
Whispers of Zealot’s who’d strike in the night,
Though not near enough it seems.
More whispers had passed of a Rabbi who spoke
Like none had done before.
But hopes of the Messiah had faded dim
When his son walked out that door.

Now the crowds gathering and then
Earth seemed to hold her breath,
And his chest gripped him tightly
From some impending silent death.
Now swept along like a fight
That cannot alone be fought
He finds himself standing on
The stones of Pilate’s court.

Both men thrust before the throng
Were bloodied, beat and torn.
Yet one stood calm and steady
The other, dejected, forlorn.
Now as his eyes see past the blood
Through all that time had done,
The old man stumbled and fought for breath
As his eyes beheld his son.

Passion for God’s purpose
Had born a bitter soul
Who wrenched the gavel from God’s hand
To meter out wrath’s bowl.
From Zealot to thief, he found
His misery unstemmed
Now more, a murderer –
Guilty. Convicted. Condemned.

So when the choice was given
Who would suffer the tree and die?
T’was the frail voice of an aged man
Who was the first to cry.
“Give us Barabbas, a father’s son,
I cannot lose him twice.
His sin is great, but he’s my son,
So the other must bear the price”.

As Pilate gestured toward the Priests
It was certain that death be done.
Now the words that cried above the crowd
Were to secure his only son,
“Crucify him, crucify him, He will not reign over me”.
Then the crowd joined voice with his
And sent Jesus to the tree.

Now age and youth sit once again
In unified desire
With single breath and matchless hope
Awaiting their Messiah.
It was the younger who now spoke with
Tears streaming down his face.
“Father, now I see, it was He
Who took my place”.

Now a different crowd had gathered
But still scared all the same
As people heard a thundering and
Beheld the Spirit’s flame.
They looked and saw just fishermen
Who spoke tongues of foreign men.
Then one stood up among them
Whose voice brought pain again.

The old man’s fingers trembled
As his body took the strain
Not from the load he carried
But the weight of words that stained.
Words that robbed, words that cut
Words that tore and hung.
“It was you who crucified Him!
By you this wrong was done”.

Before he knew it, without choice
He heard himself cry out
And what started as a whisper
Became a steady shout.
The crushing guilt of sin
Caused tears to cloud his view.
“Brother quick, please tell us now,
What is it we must do?”

Three thousand precious souls that day
Were saved from hell’s wide door.
The older and the younger too
Among the crowd who saw
The light of the gospel of the glory of Christ
As it were, in Jesus face
And bowed their head, and bent their knee
To the one who took their place.

Kept

He watched through flaming swords
His children walk away
From all He’d crafted with His hands
That they may stay.
Yet now they go into the world,
Bare but for skins.
An empty grove once clean, now stained;
Covering for sins.

“I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.”

He watched as whip and chains drew
Bloody cries of pain
With sorrow mingled in the clay
Like heartache’s stain.
From tender touch of babe filled boat,
To flame gild’ voice,
Through princely shepherd and trembling tongue;
Sovereign choice.

“I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.”

He sees His children once again,
Leg weary in the sand.
King to Slave they spurned His love;
Face to foreign land.
Dispersed and scattered as
Sheep without a shepherd.
Yet a remnant shall He keep
With strong thongs tethered.

“I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.”

He sees His Son bear the load;
Beam and sin would kill,
Through ancient gate He stumbled
T’ward the rugged hill.
He hears the lonely voice, bears down
Then turns away.
‘It is finished’ comes the cry;
Darkest of all days.

“I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.”

He sees me now a wandering,
Weighed down with sin.
Calls me to Himself with a
Grace I’m lost within.
I kneel before my Saviour;
His wounds now so dear.
Rest in my Eternal hope
With His voice so clear.

“I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.”

Isaiah 46:3-4, ESV
“Listen to me, O house of Jacob,
all the remnant of the house of Israel,
who have been borne by me from before your birth,
carried from the womb;
even to your old age I am he,
and to gray hairs I will carry you.
I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.

Chris Thomas – February 2014

Elijah, Part 1

For a number of years I have been blessed and encouraged by not only the Preaching ministry of John Piper, but also his poetry.

Here, in four parts, is one of his pieces that has had an impact on me. The link below goes to the Desiring God site where you can both read and listen to a reading of his poem, Elijah.

Enjoy!

Elijah, Part 1 – Desiring God.

When I Awake

The night is dark away from you
And darker still my soul in pain
I’ve lost my way, fallen asleep
I fear I’ll never see you again.

When I awake
I find you by my side
When I awake
Your love drives out the dark
And if I ever sleep again
I know I’ll see you
When I awake

How bright the day that breaks my sleep
To see your face and fear no more
To walk with you and feel your touch
That gives me peace and wings to soar.

Psalm 139:17-18

How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast are the sum of them!
Were I to count them, they would outnumber the sand.
When I awake, I am still with you.

Words Fail Me

What would I do, what would I say
If God stood before me, here, today?
Would I run to greet Him, offer a ‘worship song’?
Maybe enquire into His return saying, “Lord, how long?”

Would I find excuses for all I haven’t done?
Could I explain my sin away as ‘just having fun’?
Maybe bring someone to meet Him, for the first time ever
And even though He’s already promised, ask Him to stay forever Continue reading

When Devastation Reigns

When devastation reigns, to whom do we turn?

When our television’s weep over the destruction of the innocent, to whom do we lift up our eyes?

Psalm 123:1-2 (ESV)

To you I lift up my eyes,
O you who are enthroned in the heavens!
2  Behold, as the eyes of servants
look to the hand of their master,
as the eyes of a maidservant
to the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes look to the Lord our God,
till he has mercy upon us.

O God, I wait on you.
I look for the slightest twitch of your hand, the smallest sign of your coming mercy.
I know it will come, for you are the Lord my God.
With eyes lifted to heaven I stand.
O God, I wait on you.