A Prisoner Free

I saw before me a prison cell
with names of faithful souls
crudely carved in the wall

And a voice said to me
“Go put your name
alongside the ancient saints”

I hesitated
for my fear was great
and my worth too small
but love compelled me go

“Without the capture of your life”
said the voice of grace
“others will never be free
They will live in isolation
walled in by shame and guilt
and deceptive pleasures”

And so then
with trembling hands
I wrote my name
as the prison door closed
and I was freer
than I had ever been

Hope Enough for All

Will it be enough
This heart of mine
To share the richest love?
Can this sinful man
Who stumbles much
Declare the hope of God?
Or will it be
That I find life
Where life I come to bring?
Could it yet be
My own poor heart
That finds a song to sing?
It would be like God
To bless the ones
Who for His pleasure serve
Grace unbounded
Love poured out
In a measure undeserved
So may it be
That God will move
As God is apt to do
And give new life
To those who serve
And those to whom we go

Untethered World

An untethered world needs an anchor
A way to hold fast through the storm
There is One who stands never to fall
Heals the hurting and makes the weak strong

Those who believe and who follow
Are called to proclaim that good news 
To say to a world in a free fall
There is a lifeline of hope you can use
Reach out as you sink in the waters
Grab his hand as you face wind and waves
For Jesus our Lord, the true Son of God
Offers grace by which we are saved
Church, our untethered friends need the vision
That we have discovered in Christ
This teetering world seeks an answer
We know only one will truly suffice

So stand firm on the rock, Church of Jesus
Be bold in your faith and your deeds
This plummeting world needs a rescue
And through us is how God intercedes

Beyond Our Grasp

Let us aim
Beyond our grasp
Giving neighbors
Greater reach
Let us give
Beyond our comfort
Letting others
Find their keep
Let our hearts
Become undone
For the good
So those yet met
Let our spirits
Be unleashed
For the joy
Before us set
Let us find
The deeper love
Of a world
Held in the heart
Let us see
With eyes of God
The future vision
He imparts

Let Me Plant a Garden

Let me plant a garden
Beyond the backyard fence
And let the smallest seeds of hope
A new future now commence
I’ll tend the weeds and water
I’ll nurture best I can
Just give it time to germinate
By God’s good will, not man’s
As it grows and captures ground
As the wind blows seeds about
Fear not the crop so different
But let the fence be taken out
The garden will invade
The oft well-tended lawn
And life will come with shouts of joy
And the household be reborn 
This landscape unfamiliar
Birthed by soil rich and old
Will be the lasting legacy
Of hearts who’d be so bold

Onward

I wandered through the underbrush
Losing the battle with briars and thorns
The countless minor wounds 
Were weapons of amassed destruction 
Making camp for a time on a hillside
I felt the hope of healing might come
But it remained but a thought
Deep in the recesses of my soul
Until one day when I awoke
And the wounds were harder to see
And the scars no longer tender
I realized that while I lived each day
Hurts were healed and strength regained
It happened while I wasn’t looking
And now, once again, I resume the trek
This time on a slightly different path
Thanks be to God

God’s Good Pleasure

Turn back O soul and seek the Lord!
Give your heart to God’s good pleasure.
Turn back O soul and seek the Lord!
In him there’s priceless treasure.

Be wise, O sons and daughters
Give God your beating heart
Devote it all to God alone
And joy he will impart

This world will try to fool you
And convince you good is great
But heed these words of deepest truth
And find a better fate

God doesn’t seek your doing
Nor your strategies so bold
He’d rather see your lovely face
Your hand he longs to hold

And when your heart is given
To please the Lord above
Much goodness will flow out of you
As an outpour of your love

So, turn back O soul and seek the Lord!
Give your heart to God’s good pleasure.
Turn back O soul and seek the Lord!
In him there’s priceless treasure

Urban Chapel

It stands above the roofline
As a sentinel of peace
Where anxious is the fiefdom
Of a lord none can appease
False hope is pieced together
Its promise never to fulfill
Yet there among the trouble
The apex calls to hearts – be still
It’s peak points toward the heavens
To the cosmos natural sire
Calling forth great adoration
Its only task is to inspire
This monument of glory
To the masses calls “Come near”
For the maker of the heavens
Will allay your greatest fear 
So call the sacred artists
And bring the finest gifts
Through artistry and majesty
A fretful world you may uplift

Water on Your Face

Grace-infested waters
trickle down upon your face
the soil on your soul
washed away without a trace
Baptized among believers
God’s hand upon your head
the stain of sin wiped clean
transformed beauty in its stead
No longer are you doomed
to walk the road which you have paved
A new path your feet have found
when in Christ Jesus you are saved
Embrace God’s living presence
in the Church where Jesus reigns
throw your lot in with these sinners
who in Christ now live as saints
This community of love and hope
offers to the world God’s grace
the same joyful gift you felt that day
in the water on your face