Psalm 115

Oh God, maker of rain,
ruler of the skies,
your creation brings relief from the glare,
the sun stoked summer furnace.
The clouds cover the earth in coolness;
the rain drums a comforting beat.
The land drinks in refreshment,
praising its creator for soothing relief.

Just so, Yahweh, maker of men, ruler of all,
your grace gives us pause.
The burning heat of refinement if ever purifying
would reduce us to empty ashes.
We find instead mercy laid in our laps,
gifts of rest, a time of calm breath.
For you pour cool comfort with abandon,
washing away our dross to reveal joy in the fire.

Real Christmas: A Poem

Christmas, a time filled with decorations,
candles and lights and ribbons and bows,
a time of great cheer, parties and toasts,
a time to wish peace on each boy and girl
of opening gifts and dinners galore.

Yet don't forget through the comings and goings
the real truth often veiled in the hustle and bustle.
Not the reindeer or Santa (though he's based on Saint Nick),
not Rudolph or Frosty or elves sprightly and quick.
Though these bring joy, there's joy deeper still...

Make no doubt about it,
Christmas is not wishful thinking.
Christ did come as an infant, a baby,
conceived in a real woman's womb,
the humble teenage virgin Mary.

He was born into our world
God in the flesh,
the awesome, glorious Lord,
made to be held and seen and heard--
light inaccessible breaking into the dark.

He was real, this God-man,
as real as you and me,
He ate and he breathed,
he hurt and he loved,
he bled and he died.

So remember on Christmas the truth of the day
Jesus came as a man, a babe born to die,
to save us from sin and he will come again.
Manage to pause for a moment or two
and remember the man who came here for you.

Psalm 114

You are the God of Hope.
We come to you in prayer,
We come with our requests.
We know our strength is limited,
but your power endless.
Hear our cry, O God,
Listen to the pleas from our mouths.
We wait.
We wait with patience.
And as we wait,
we ask that our souls conform to your will.

Psalm 113

My heart grew troubled,
my soul groaned within me
as I observed the ways of the ignorant.
I saw those who blind themselves to the Lord,
who ignore his existence and his statutes.
I saw how they prospered,
how power fell into their hands.
Wealth they have in abundance,
yet they waste it on trivial nothings.
Sinners dominate the culture,
they draw others in with their sin.
Those who are lawless are honored
and those who deny God lauded.
I asked myself, "Why is this so?
Why has God allowed the wicked to prosper?"

My thoughts were helpless
and my mood downhearted
until I remembered the truth.
The end of the wicked is to come.
The ignorant have gained their reward on the earth;
they have gained the love of men.
Those who seek the love of men
will find emptiness on the Day of Judgment.
I realized, O Lord, that those who love you,
those who serve Yahweh,
they will receive their reward at the end of time.
The righteous will stand on that day,
but the sinner will fall.
Though the wicked prosper now,
their downfall is assured.

I look to the faults of culture,
to a nation awash in sin,
to a country flaunting iniquity.
I know, O Lord, even if your people are slandered,
if believers are reduced to but a few,
if Christians are mocked and despised,
you, O Mighty God, still reign.
The Lord is King of Nations,
God of Hosts,
and He will come to judge,
to proclaim his justice from the mountain tops.
The Son of God will reign
and all will bow before Him.
This, my God, is my hope,
and I put my trust in you.

Psalm 112

Take heed, all you who decry God's creation,
who ignore the Almighty's handiwork!
For the power of our God has created;
His hand has designed all we see.
To deny His work,
to be deaf to His speech,
is a way to judgment.
Bow before the Almighty God today
while it is still called today.
Preserve your life
and acknowledge the Author of All.

Psalm 111

You are Yahweh,
I AM that I AM,
created by no one;
existing in self-sufficiency,
you need no one to live;
acting self-directed,
you do as you please;
living eternally,
you have no beginning and no end;
displaying consistency,
you remain immutable.

Is there any being like Yahweh?
None can compare.
No being in existence can claim he is
self-existent, self-sufficient, self-directed,
eternal and consistent in existence.
If there is no being like Yahweh,
then who do I trust?
I must trust Yahweh,
he who can see all ends,
he who alone knows the depth of man.
LORD, remind me at all times
that you alone are the sustaining force of my life.

Psalm 110

How can I attain contentment?
When circumstances go wrong,
I complain and grump about.
When people hurt me,
I cry and whine.
When the world chides me about my faith,
I feel anger and hatred.

Teach me the secret to contentment.
Teach me to say as Paul,
"I have learned the secret of being content...
I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
I cannot find contentment on my own;
I cannot force change in my feelings.
Only You alone can work peace in me.
May I cling to you day in and out
for only in fixing my gaze on you
do I have the hope of true contentment.