Divided Loves: One Another and the World

 

In Christ, when strangers are a one another,

feet get washed, refreshed, and bodies fed

with festive, hearty food. The poor are clothed.

Those once alone become all sisters, brothers,

saints–together we taste living bread.

Though once ashamed, now praise becomes our robe

of righteousness. A word of hope is shared

among the brotherhood. A word of love

is given as a sacred trust. The bond

of unity now proves that we are cared

for by the King. Around, the world may shove.

But those immersed within the sacred pond

will find a gentle, just and perfect peace,

for from our sins we’ve been set free: released.

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Divided Loves: Family vs. Idle Idolatry

We can love family as our own, or lead
them to regret our lack of loving deeds.
If we neglect our fam’, we will hear moans;
If we betray their trust, then we will groan
in fatal loss of love. Commitments must
be kept if we will keep the sacred trust
that’s borne from cradle to the grave.
Our mothers, brothers, sisters also save
our own necks many times. Above, the Father
offers us a home, a hope. We bother
not our Lord in humble prayer, thanking
Him for many gifts. He only spanks
us when we fail to share love given us
or when we fail to turn to Him in trust.

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Washing Dishes

Pots and pans seem to understand

that the best way to wash your hands

is not to hold a royal trial of the King,

but to humbly serve in love and sing

while feeding those who work and hurt

and scrubbing away the world’s dirt.

Love is willing to serve in simple ways

while deflecting to Jesus all the praise.

Quiet at home, proclaiming abroad

listening to the angel’s laud

of the Lord. They serve all night

yet enduring not an ounce of fright,

for at the break of day, the dishes

will return along with prayers and wishes

over eggs and croissants made at home

before we go out again to our local Rome.

 

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Happy Valentine’s day to the woman who’s dishes I have washed dishes for nearly fourteen years.

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Love Tested: God or Mammon?

I scan the home and farm;

I scan my bank account and investments.

I see my wife and children dressed in finest fashions;

I see my workers smiling when they greet me at the door.

I smell the company dinners;

I smell the wine in private company.

I greet my neighbors in their also pleasant homes;

I greet my enemies from the security of my iron gate.

I think how God has blessed me;

I think how much more blessing I desire.

My heart yearns not faintly with longing;

My soul longs for more years to enjoy this world.

Till all is stripped away through heart attack;

Till my economy collapses beneath the wait of my greed.

My protection is breached!

My borders are unprotected!!

A heavy heart toils to find God among the ruins of disaster;

A heavy burdened back labors to lift my eyes beyond the horizon.

My children, home, lands and pleasant company are gone;

My wife wishes that I were gone as well.

 

How can a life so right

become so wronged?

I wrestle with the dirt,

as though digging my own grave.

I wrestle with my friends,

as though wrestling with my God.

I wrestle with the devil,

and find myself wrestling with myself.

 

Where has my love gone?

The simple love of children laughing;

The simple joys of cattle calving.

Where has my hope gone?

The simple hope of heaven yet to come;

The simple security of forgiveness won.

Where has my faith gone?

The simple faith in the Lord unmoved;

The simple humility of trusting Truth.

 

The Lord reveals Himself amid the storm;

He shows me that all that I thought was norm

Was merely what I’d seen

Yet hidden beyond my wildest dreams

I had not known the Maker of the stars;

I had not known the Designer of all my million parts.

“Lord, let me simply walk with you,

and though my path is marked with thorns

Let me speak in simple truths

and behold you sitting on Your Throne!”

 

I lift my eyes to see my friends gather round,

I lift my ears to hear with joy the sound of laughter once again.

The Lord has settled me alive in this broken world;

and though the swirls of life seem unsettled …

A broken heart proves plenty an offering in the plate that passes by.

Now I can taste once more His Presence at the table with my enemies.

 

My story & my song. – Mert Hershberger, remembering Job, in honor of all my loved ones.

February 17, 2017.

Categories: God, Humility, Poem, Prayer, Suffering, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Divided Loves: Marital Love

We must consider God: He was not bored

when He created Man and Adam’s wife;

The Maker made His image. In fair Eve,

our King’s intent: the gift of holy life.

The two He joins, our lives God gently weaves:

Our souls, His saints; Himself our Sovereign Lord.

Love intertwined: the Church and Jesus Christ.

His Word dives our soul from spirit. Sword

of God now making what went wrong alright

through perfect grace. He clothes with more than leaves

and what was torn, in Christ is now restored.

The pains of ancient times, our Lord relieves.

Our Father gives the Spirit as our Seal,

and thus our Husband Jesus truly heals.

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Divided Loves: Love for God

For love, I take a Book off of the shelf
to read about what lasts. My tiny life,
a mere reflection of Eternity
beyond the great beyond. Where Heaven kisses
earth, what’s needed to fulfill God’s Word:
a second, from above–a brand new birth.
A love for God requires life divine,
“Lord Jesus, I am Yours, and You are mine.
I give You all I have, its what You’re worth!”
This seed-like faith emerged from what I heard
about His love and truth. His grace and wisdom
speaks unto my heart and sets me free
from fear. I now can laugh at cruel knife
or fist aimed at my former love: my self.

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My Darkest Night: A Confession

My darkest night and day, inside was pain, my soul bound up in chains.

I looked confounded, looked uncertain, certainly looked confused.
I tried rejection, I tried inspection, and I tried just to refuse.
My soul was heavy, my mind a mess, my heart got torn in shreds.
I was left alone, adrift, and nearly left for dead.
This is what I almost, nearly, and completely would have done.

Looking out, looking up, looking all around.
Feeling lost, feeling forward, feeling like I might be found.
I hear a cry, I cry for help, I cannot help but cry.
I wonder how, I wonder where, I mostly wonder whom and why?
What could I, should I, would I do?

I look away, I look inside, yet I seem to only stare.
My hands hang limp, brain disconnected, yet I truly care.
I am not wise, I’m at a loss, I am not self-improved.
I want to hide, I want to run, yet inside I am moved.
What can I, shall I, will I do?

I look behind, I look within, and then look far beyond.
I have no power, no potion, and no magic wand.
A little truth, a little prayer, and lots of simple mercy:
For my family, for my friends, and for my foes quite early.
This is what I could have, should have, and will have done.

For, Yes! Redemption came, my mind was changed, and I rose up not the same.

Categories: Good News, Peer support, Poem, Suffering, Testimony | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sugar Maple

Beginning as a single, helicopter seed.
Seed taking root and giving sprout in spring.
The sprout grows up, grows thick, year in, year out,
Until birds land to rest their weary wings.

The summer comes, sun shines, and trees build strength
The sap is made within the broad green leaves.
When birds descend to celebrate and sing,
The roots spread out beneath mushrooms and weeds.

Fall seems to start when school kids start to enter.
Shadows stretch, extend their darker length.
The sap descends into the roots down deep.
The spread of autumn shades leaves little angst.

When Christmas comes and children play, give shout!
Snow blankets warmer earth in dead of winter.
Maple serves as toys or floorboard planks.
Morning light on untouched snow then splinters.

Crocus blooms, birds start their annual fling,
While maple sweetness rises to the spigot’s spout.
Young children to the breakfast table sprint.
Refined syrup flows: a pancake fount.

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Dedicated to family & friends who store up the best sweetness during the darkest months of the year. May the Lord be with you.

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In Sin vs. In Christ

In our flesh, we were wicked and perverse. In Christ, we are holy and perfected as He is.
In sin, we ran from the bad news. In Christ, we run with the Good News.
In sin, we were lost. In Christ, we are found.
In sin, we sank in the miry clay. In Christ, we have been raised to sit in the heavenly places.
In the flesh, we were lame and paralyzed. In Christ, we dance in praise and march in triumph.
In our flesh, we were deaf. In Christ, we hear the voice of the good Shepherd and obey.
In our flesh, we were mute. In Christ, we praise the Lord with every breath for His majesty.
In our flesh, we were blind. In Christ, we see God’s glory in the face of Jesus.
In sin, we were broken and divided. In Christ, we are one and whole.
In our flesh, there was no good thing. In Christ we are made new made new and made a heritage.
In sin, we fall short of God’s glory. In Christ, we are the righteousness of God.
In sin, we were tormented beggars and debtors. In Christ, we are forgiven and redeemed with treasure.
In our flesh, we were in bondage and slavery. In Christ, we are liberated and adopted as children of God.
In the world, we were outside the gate. In Christ, we are welcomed into the Father’s house.
In sin, we were forgotten. In Christ, we are remembered before the throne of grace.
In haste, we had sold our birthright. In Christ, we have every blessing in heavenly places.
In sin, we were defiled and dirty. In Christ, we are cleansed by his blood and sanctified by His Spirit.
In sin we were abandoned and forsaken. In Christ, we have been loved with an everlasting love.
In our sin, we were ignorant. In Christ, we know the truth, are freed, and worship in the Spirit & Truth.
In the world, we were distressed and dispirited. In Christ, we have peace in the Holy Spirit.
In sin, we were open to satan’s attack. In Christ, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit.
In the flesh, we were bare and unprotected. In Christ, we have been clothed with garments of salvation.
In violations, we were dead. In Christ, we are made alive.
In the world, we were without hope and without God. In Christ, God has given us an enduring hope

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Fear Not

Fear not, o child, be not afraid.
Though parents one another chided,
Though brother falls upon your flesh in rages,
Though rest bares his drunken chest,
Fear not, o child, be not afraid.
Though cousin tongues and tribes are divided,
Though your heirs shall stuck in foreign cages,
Though father gives you up as his very best,
Fear not, o child, be not afraid–
You shall yet see the light of day.

Fear not, bold lamb, be not afraid.
When you go out to roam in fields,
When you drift from the gathered fold,
When the hirelings take their pay and run,
Fear not, bold lamb, be not afraid.
When you are taken for your woolen yields,
When you face the wolf or bear and go in shock,
When at last the Lion roars, the Shepherd’s won.
Fear not, bold lamb, be not afraid–
God will yet guide your wayward way.

Fear not, sent one, be not afraid.
While your learn to bed and ask and pray,
While you are sent to distant, hostile towns,
While you cast out demons and heal the sick,
Fear not, sent one, be not afraid.
While you hear what governors and kings might say,
While you walk among crucifying crowds,
While you face a grave stone, however thick,
Fear not, sent one, be not afraid–
I’ll return, just as you heard Me say.

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