Friday, October 20, 2017

Yet Another Short Poem

Image result for images for Mark 7:31-37

A friend said to me he likes my poems
But they are kind o’ long
So here is another short one for him,
Third on a stretch and going strong.

I thought I should do the blind again
But changed my mind regarding that pursuit
Instead I have decided in this poem
To highlight the healing of a certain deaf-mute.

Somewhere near the Sea of Galilee
To Jesus was brought a certain man
Who could neither hear nor speak
But this did not thwart the Master’s plan.

The multitude requested just a touch
But Jesus determined otherwise,
Fingers in his ears and spittle on his tongue
He healed the man in the way described. 

Image result for images for Mark 7:31-37

A simple command as he looked to heaven,
It was just a single Aramaic word,
The English meaning of which is “be opened”
And this deaf and dumb man actually heard.

Straightway his ears were opened
And the string of his tongue was loosed,
His speech was clear and distinct
He was immediately rid of this abuse.

Mark chapter 7 gives the details,
There you can read it for yourself,
Find in God’s word the miracle you need,
It’s time you take that Bible off the shelf.

Stewart Russell © October 2017

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Another Short Poem

Image result for images for Luke 18:35-43

Maybe I am getting lazy
But here is another short poem,
If you check my anthology
You won’t find many of them.

It’s about another blind man
You would recall the first,
With clay Jesus anointed his eyes
It was nothing rehearsed.

On this occasion, however
He just spoke the word,
“Receive thy sight," the Master said
And this blind man heard.

Some say there must be something
In order for Jesus to heal,
For them in this miracle
Something new has been revealed.

Just a word is all it took
And this blind man walked away seeing
Not surprising though
That’s how the earth came into being.

Image result for images for Psalm 33:6

“By the word of the Lord
The heavens were made,”
Says Psalm 33 and verse 6.
And God’s Word can never fade.

So no need to argue
You "Mud-ites" and "Non-Mud-ites",
Jesus used both methods
Yet both men received their sight.

Stewart Russell © October 2017

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Little Is Much

Image result for images for John 9:1

This is just a short poem
Which is not my style,
I know you’re in a hurry
So I won’t keep you a while.

Though short it may be
There’s a lot in a little,
Quite a lot was done
With just clay and spittle.

Of course after its use
Go wash in the pool,
Not just any pool though
The one at Siloam would be cool.

Image result for images for John 9:1

We all knew he was blind
As blind as could be
For all he did was beg
To work he could not see.

But he met the Master
In the midst of his plight
And following his instructions
He received his sight.

I promised to be short
Just as short as I am,
A little mud in Jesus’ hand
Gave sight to a blind man.

Whatever your problem
You can give it to Jesus,
He’ll take care of it
Even if it’s on the Sabbath.

Stewart Russell © October 2017

Friday, October 13, 2017

The Sunday Morning Sermon

Image result for images for Sunday morning at Church

What moved you about the sermon?
Was it the content or the consent?
Did you feel comfortable and consoled?
Or did you hear stuff that you resent?

Was it loud, long and light?
Or was it riveted in the word and true?
What was it about the Sunday morning sermon
That really reached out to you?

Christendom’s populace seems bent
On a diet of ongoing entertainment,
Particularly among the young
But also those of the older segment.

Take for example today’s trend
Regarding the concerts, the music, the artists
No doubt very much out of place
Would be a message from John the Baptist.

Image result for images of the Sunday morning sermon

Christian education is suffering
It’s under siege by Christian entertainment
And its promoters give much time and resources
To ensure to the youth it is relevant.

For there’s competition in the market square
Vying for the attention of the youth
And what we see in the secular
Is also among the Christians: that’s the truth.

There is fast becoming no distinction
Between these appealing facets
And now the rivalry is set and raging
As though to determine who is the best at it.

The concert halls are packed at weekends
And at that place when it is up on the hill,
I am not so sure about the message
But certainly the fans are there for the thrill.

The Gospel artistes will turn on the charm
And the audience will definitely respond
And depending on the artiste’s popularity
The applause could go on and on and on.
This is intermingled with praises
I am not always sure to whom they are inclined,
Whether it’s God above who is to be honoured
Or these are the praises to men assigned.

For the way some artistes are regarded
Would make you shudder more than a bit,
Some terms like anointed and awesome
Have become the regular audit.

And preachers are not to be left out
For they too are getting in on the act,
Much of their Sunday morning sermons
Have built in an entertainment pack.

Replete with antics and clichés
Designed to evoke hallelujah and amen
But regarding content and the word
Not much of that is coming from them.

Image result for images of the Sunday morning sermon

Often they will open with a scripture
And right after they will close the word
And then proceed with the act
I am sure you have both seen and heard.

This is the morning after the night before
And the hallowed halls are not nearly as packed
As the concert halls after last evening,
I am not joking for you know that this is a fact.

For many have slept in late Sunday morning
And the few that have ventured out
Must be stirred up by the preached word
As the preacher pontificates and shouts.

His performance must be on the level
As the performance they witnessed last night
And so he will take his time to present
A sermon that is loud and long and light.

Loud because he must keep them awake,
Long because it must appear he has much content,
Light because there is little truth to the above
For not much word is presented is my lament.

And so we have the competition
Between Christian education and entertainment
Entertainment is the winner by a distance
And it’s education that they resent.

The result is a paucity of knowledge
As it particularly pertains to the word
And a tempered, watered down education
Since people must be otherwise stirred.

“What’s emotional is what’s important (1)
And how I feel rather than my spiritual state (2)
For sermons which are dead and staid (3)
Are the sermons that I deplore and hate.” (4)

Lines one and two are nonsense
However with lines three and four I concur,
Any preacher who preaches a dead sermon
Probably did not to God’s word refer.

Image result for images of the Sunday morning sermon

For the word of God is quick and powerful
And sharper than any two edged sword,
While the preaching might be dead and staid
There is nothing dead about the word.

It’s time that we review our posture
Both as Christians here and abroad,
For untoward times are upon us
And we are spoken of as frauds.

For our stance speaks to double standards
And such is no stance at all,
Rather it’s the proverbial sitting on the fence
And it’s time to reexamine our call.

It’s a call to be pure and to be righteous,
It’s a call to holiness and to truth,
It’s a call to the few that are chosen
To take up God’s charge and show full proof.

There is a message somewhere in this poem
I do not mean to be critical or snide
But for me I will think on that message
And adapt where to me it can be applied.

I pray that God will bless and honour your ministry
In whichever part of the vineyard you are
But I also pray about the Sunday morning sermon
That with God’s word it will be on par.

Stewart Russell © June, 2017

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

My Prayer

Image result for images for Matthew 6:9

Heavenly Father
I give you thanks for this day
I thank you
That I am learning your way
I know not
What this day has in store
But Lord, help me
To trust you even more.

I thank you for
Blessings noticed and unnoticed
For they two combined
Makes an enormous list
I have seen your merciful hand
However I’ve turned
Help me never, Lord
Such great love to spurn.

Teach me to wait
 In patience before you
Cognizant that yours
Is always the better view
Teach me too, Lord
That you are never far
But that you are in us
Wherever we are.

Image result for images for Matthew 6:9

This day Lord,
I ask nothing for myself
For you always
Replenish my shelf
However Lord,
 For those in dire need
I ask that you
Grant them relief with speed.

To the suffering
In hurricane ravaged lands
To them Heavenly Father
Extend your merciful hand
And to all of us at home
In this troubled land
Teach us once more
To follow your righteous plan.
For we are blessed
Lord, we know that we are
Though there are some things
Those blessings mar
Like the guns and violence
And the several road deaths
They all combine
To disrupt our night’s rest.

Image result for images for Matthew 6:9

No doubt Lord
All of this happens elsewhere
So for such places
We also pray
That your name would again
Be truly revered
In our homes and communities
And everywhere.

Let this simple prayer
Be the desire of each heart
That perhaps today
Would be that fresh start
Where we would return
To trusting in you
And all ungodly practices
We would eschew.

Just like I began, Lord
I end this prayer with thanks
For all my necessities
That you daily grant
But most of all, Lord,
That I am your child
Help me to walk
Ever close by your side.

Amen and Amen!

Stewart Russell © October 2017