Plaster saint

February 10, 2006

II Corinthians 4

i am a plaster saint:
i am a hurriedly painted,
pained and harried mock-up.
A model saint? A plastered saint.

Clean hands?
My whitewashed appearance belies the truth:
i’m stained by the thoughts
that nest in my head.

These fault lines that craze my hands and face
betray my scared scarred heart’s disgrace:
i am brittle
i am broken.

Look at my feet of clay:
you will see they are brittle, too,
and worn out standing on their pedestal.
They have often tried to walk, but fallen.

Look at my hands:
i can hold nothing in these statuesque hands.
i can only hold them out towards others,
and hope, somehow, that warmth and love
will escape their cold clay confines
and be a living memorial.

Like the statue, like the clay, i am dust.
Clay enclosing God’s treasure trove:
i am animated by the gospel of God
Who said, “Let there be light,”
Who caused His light to shine
in the darkness of my heart:
God Who put His treasure in me,
in this earthen vessel, this plaster saint,
that the excellence of the power
may be of Him, and not of me.


Why (I AM loved)

February 7, 2006

inspired by a T-shirt design by Nic Black

What is man that You are mindful of him,
the son of man that You visit him?

Are You mindful of man, of me?
Because God, on the face of it,
it hardly seems so!
These dangers, doubts, disillusionments —
i despair of this world fraught with despair —
i cannot face it any longer.

And only Job is my comforter
as i cry out with him,
“Why, Lord? Who are You?
Save face! Show Yourself!”

i hear no reply.
Instead, i turn to see a face —
streaked with tears,
caked in blood,
crowned with thorns —
the face of God that assures me
He does care
i do matter
I AM loved

A flame

January 24, 2006

Zechariah 4
inspired by a quotation by Erin Majors

i want to be on fire for You:
a raging bonfire, lit by a burning bush
But a bonfire consumes
itself, and i
do not want
to burn

So i will be a flickering flame, a candle:
now wavering, now faltering —
anoint my wick by Your Spirit
melt my heart like wax
For a candle loses nothing
by lighting another candle

You did this all for me

May 8, 2004

You set aside Your majesty
And took on human frailty
You walked the shores of Galilee
And said You’d come to set me free
You did this all for me

You showed the stark reality
Of my own depravity
But yet Your love and mercy
Led You to Gethsemane
You did this all for me

And there You honoured Heav’n’s decree
You manifest Your glory
And You paid my sins’ penalty
Crucified on Calvary’s tree
You did this all for me

“Lama sabachtani”
Death seemed to claim the victory
But then You conquered on day three
The triumph of Your majesty
You did this all for me

Psalm 23

September 27, 2003

I called to you and led you down
Into the pastures green
And I’ve walked with you, by your side —
That’s where I’ve always been

You gave your heart and followed Me
Beside the waters blue
Wherever you may find yourself
Just know: I’m there with you

We walked along the mountaintops —
The view was fine to see!
My child, the paths I lead you on —
That’s where I will be

The path grew rocky; progress, slow
You cried out in despair
You thought that I’d abandoned you
But I was always there

And though the valley hems you in
And death may seem so near
My child, I watch over you,
And I am always here

You heard My voice, returned and ate,
Blessed in every way
All your days I’ll care for you
And in My house you’ll stay

i cannot make it on my own

August 5, 2002

i cannot make it on my own
No, i can’t make it on my own
i cannot make it on my own —

But when i bow before Your throne
Yes when i fall down at Your throne
When i fall at Your throne
And You welcome me home
And You call me Your own
i know, i know i’m not alone

No, i can’t make it on my own
i cannot make it on my own

But Your hand reaches down
And You turn me around
Lord in You i am found … Yeah!
You put my feet on solid ground

i cannot make it on my own
i will not make it on my own

Hit my head ‘gainst the wall
When i stumble and fall
i can’t handle it all, no,
On Your Name i must call

No, i can’t make it on my own
No, i can’t make it on my own
Don’t have to make it on my own
’cause i know, i know, i know, i know i’m not alone

Someone Who cares

May 8, 2001

When all your yesterdays fade into tomorrow
And each new sunrise brings anger and sorrow
Your world is full of trouble and strife
And you can’t figure out this burden of life

There’s Someone Who cares
There’s Someone Who’ll be there for you
There’s Someone Who cares
There’s Someone Who’s been through it too

When all around you the walls are closing in
And you can’t hear yourself think for the din
When you are lonely, feel left behind
Your heart is breaking, think you’ll lose your mind

There’s Someone Who cares
There’s Someone Who loves you for you
There’s Someone Who cares
There’s Someone Whose love for you is true

When none around you seem to understand
And no-one even wants to lend a hand
Endless worry starts to take its toll
And you wonder if anyone’s in control

There’s Someone Who cares
There’s Someone Whose touch can renew
There’s Someone Who cares
There’s Someone Who gave His life for you