We Can Trust Him

Faith, Poetry

I’ve come to loathe negative “I am” statements…

I am where I am

I’ve been where I’ve been

No amount of striving is going to rewrite my history or quick fix my flaws

My mind has succumbed too many times to the visible and invisible taunts of worthlessness

Inflicted by self, by careless words in well meaning mouths or downright spat out with spite by people also lost inside their own mental health plights

Mine is a life potholed by moments of rejection which have so often threatened to incapacitate my person

But greater than any rejection is my confidence that I am accepted, by God no less, and who would argue with him?!

The devil is who and he’ll make you believe that God hates you, but there is absolutely no foundation or slither of truth there

So I’ve started asking a different question, not who do I say I am

But I ask who does God say I am and I choose to believe it, regardless of feelings

The power in truth is no hippy notion of filling our lives with physical satisfactions which are only fleeting distractions

I have found the power in truth, is that, spoken out loud and chosen inside it begins to uproot the lies that degrade our lives and in its place grows a tree of life

Irrevocable value takes root

It forms a system in my heart that holds together the banks that previously threatened to fall apart

Each root a whisper from heaven writing a love song in the depths of my soul

You are forgiven, you are loved, you are accepted, you are protected, you are redeemed, you are worthy of love, you were seen before you were conceived, you were held in the womb, you are treasured, you have a purpose and that purpose is to be known and loved and to know and love your Creator, you have a God given right to be alive just as you are right now

Because His love isn’t forceful but it is a force, His grace takes you on a journey to freedom without guilt

He celebrates you in the light of Jesus

He, the Holy Spirit, is the greatest of counsellors leading us alongside gentle waters and green pastures, even when storms are raging overhead he’ll help us find rest amidst the maelstrom and give us power to command its stillness

God knows we’re not perfect and doesn’t expect it, but he also knows that being in his presence will help us navigate the mines in our mind fields

Fear cannot exist where perfect love is

So I choose to see myself through the lense of his love

I am not lost, I’m found and this pavement of peace that I walk on is hedged in by grace

No one is lost in the light of his love, we can trust him

Freedom

Poetry

You cannot have a fling with freedom
It requires all of you, there is no walking away
It calls down the generations from blood stained crosses and blood stained offices
It cries from battle fields and hospitals
It reaches out to hearts that oppose hate
It bandies no flattering words, it does not manipulate
It tells you straight
Following me will cost you everything

Stand up and they will stand against you
Lie down and they will trample over you
Speak out and they will shoot you
Show love and they will throw it back at you
Sometimes there are fights that only end one way
But never, never in vain

Every grave that tenderly embraces the warriors of the ages knows that there rest the world changers
So let not fear strike your weary hearts
It’s no small thing to join the ranks of the willing, to sign up for the fight
But blessed are the peacemakers, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven

Just Gags?

Inspired by Conversations, Poetry, Retrospective Writing, Social Issues

Where do we go, when we ‘lose’ ourselves?
Wandering around the streets looking for meaning in the meaningless
I’ll go to bed with you, close my eyes and pretend it gives me a sense of value
Tell myself it’s only pleasure seeking
But inside I know it’s real connection that I’m craving
And I lay in these dirty sheets with a stranger by my side
Questioning just how satisfied I feel
Did I really want this?
Erasable memories.

But I know that I’ll laugh about it
Later on, when we get together to go over it
Dissecting our antics like a Michael McIntyre comedy show
A perverse sort of observation of our behaviour
Just gags
We’ll drink our wine and pretend it’s all just living
Because that’s what our culture tells us, so it must be true

But I can’t help feeling like I’ve been cheated
And all this freedom I’m practising is poisoning
My mind, my flesh
All given over to lust
Lust of a freedom that promises so much, but delivers up dust
The banquet that I feasted on, now seems empty
Like Peter Pan, pretending that air can feed me
When will I grow up?

The Freedom Fighter

Faith

nelson-mandela

I, along with many others, love our Madiba. I have been reflecting on the life of this great man and the struggle he partook in to see his people set free from oppression. I am reminded in many ways of how flawed (however essential) that fight was. How in acts of desperation, the MK, bombed and killed innocent people. My own father escaped death as one of those bombs blew out the windows he was standing by.

Despite all that, what was most astonishing to me was Madiba’s ability to lead a nation to forgive each other and genuinely unite a divided country. The fight for peace has blood on its hands, on both sides, but it has always been so in wars between human beings.

My greatest love however is for a greater man, the greatest freedom fighter. A man who fought with words against a tide of hypocrisy, lies, addictions, behaviours and sickness that oppress the human soul and trap the body. A man who declared, “If you live by the sword, you die by the sword”.

This man, whilst crucified to a tree, was able to say, “Father forgive them, they know not what they do”. His crucifixion at the hands of his own people for daring to stand for freedom, provided a way for the oppressed.  Not just through words, but in the power of His sacrifice as He conquered death. A power that even today, millennia on, can set captives free. There is no freedom like the freedom found in Jesus – it is epic.

Just like any oppressor, sin fights valiantly for a cause that has no place in our society, yet Jesus declared “I do not come to judge, but to set free”. In other words, Jesus came with the greatest message – you CAN be forgiven, you CAN be set free. It’s only by being truly forgiven that we are set free to truly forgive, to truly love, to truly walk away from what has oppressed us and look with fresh eyes at a new way of living. Free from fear.

I believe our Madiba grasped this truth with such strength and clarity that he was able to stand up in the shadow of a mightier man, his God, and proclaim, for freedom’s sake – “forgive”!

hill_cross_by_dreamca7cher