Thursday, May 29, 2014

God's Image



Christ Jesus takes the burning light
Of God, the holiest,
And makes it plain to human sight.
We look--and we are blessed.

He seems a simple, common man.
A carpenter. A Jew
With sturdy legs and working hands,
And yet he is God, too.

This simple man has made whole worlds
And yet will bless a child.
He planned how stars were all unfurled
But lives with us a while.

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For everything was created by Him, in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities — all things have been created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:15-16 HCSB)

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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Jesus Took My Rebel Heart


Jesus took my rebel heart
(So virtuous, it thought)--
Made it holy, set apart,
By his own blood I'm bought.

Jesus took my cold, dead soul
And gave life--vibrant, new.
Serving him is now my goal:
His life in all I do.

This will never come from me
(Resolving to be good).
Jesus spoke it into me--
The only one who could.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV)

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Book of Revelation


Spirits clashing
Kingdoms smashing
Weeping, crying
Millions dying
Satan seething
Dark lies breathing
Angels warring
Peace restoring
Christ descending
Saints defending
Voices raising
Endless praising

And I saw the holy city – the new Jerusalem – descending out of heaven from God, made ready like a bride adorned for her husband. (Revelation 21:2 ESV)

Don't settle for just  my poem-summary of some of what's in the book of Revelation

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Perspective

Image ©2014 James L. Swindle

You're never too small, and never too tall,
Never too fragile, never too strong,
Never too young, never too old,
To follow God's plan, to live for the Lord.

His planning is perfect. He made you just right
For finding your purpose in his holy light.
Don't look down on others, nor look up at them,
And think you can't do it. He'll do it in you.

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.
(1 Corinthians 12:4-6 ESV)

Of the thousands of photos I've taken, this photo of the dandelion and the palm tree is one of my very favorites. Several people asked me where I took the photo. It was between a car dealer's lot and a WalMart store. You don't have to go to some tropical island to find beauty--and you don't have to wait for a better year to find the Lord's plan for your life. Just start loving him and obeying him today, this minute, where you are. Turn to Jesus--or turn to him again. He has the power. He'll use you for building up his church, for his glory

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Sacrifice with Abraham


The Lord demands your very best,
The very thing you think you cannot give.
He puts your claims all to the test;
Demands you die--that rising you may live.

And if you trust him, you will find
His goodness far exceeds your highest thought.
He's more than tender, more than kind,
But never, ever can this God be bought.

After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.”
He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” (Genesis 22:1-2 ESV. Read the whole chapter.)


Saturday, May 03, 2014

Give Me...What?


                          Image credit: Chris Parfitt.

Give me faith, Lord, like a child
Who's humble, guileless, true--
A child whose worries never last--
A child with simple things to do.

Give me courage like a man
Who's lion-bold and strong--
A man who's brave from first to last--
A man who's working all day long.

Thus I'll grow in holiness
With power not my own--
A childlike faith, a manly zeal--
Both gifts from You alone.

Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it. (Jesus, in Mark 10:15 ESV)

Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
(1 Corinthians 16:13 ESV)