James encourages Christians to “be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” (James 1:19). A brief scroll through the average believer’s social media feed may suggest that we as Christ followers struggle to apply James’s teaching. We can be quick to anger when we read something disagreeable, quick to speak our mind on the matter, and slow to truly hear any alternate or opposing position. Our passions appear to be very much at war within the body (James 4:1), and the casualties of war extend beyond the church to the lost world watching us fight.
To take a thought, original and good,
And claim it as one’s own thought, own design;
To see another’s work and call it, “Mine,”
Accepting honor as the author should;
To speak until the people understood
The thief to be the writer of each line,
Scratching the author’s name off from the spine
Till truth’s uncov’ring be no likelihood–
Delusion tempts souls to these actions take,
Tries to erase the author, steal his place.
And do we not each make this fatal nod?
The author still is living and awake,
Yet we would rob his glory, slight his face.
Have not we all been plagiarists of God?
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Unmatched, unmarred by sin, unshaken, God
Maintains the utmost glory. ‘Fore his face
E’en angels hide their faces. In that place
Corruption is not suffered, cannot trod
The ground made holy by his presence. Hide
Your eyes; gain clarity. Be still and know
That he is LORD o’er all, above, below.
Fear fills us, fear fulfills us: terrified
In tenderness. Unknown yet known; most high;
E’er near; eternally enthroned above
All enemies, all not-gods, perfect love
Perfectly conquers all, never runs dry.
The sun is but a shadow of his light.
No darkness can present a worthy fight.
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Huge thanks to Brett Dickson for his invaluable insight and encouragement during the writing of this poem.
My eyes, too weak to properly perceive
The face of beauty, found in God alone,
See clearly lesser things, and thus they leave
The truth of God for gods of self and stone.
And thus I grow to hold too high a place
In my own estimation. I forget
That any good in me is all of grace.
My ev’ry breath is evidence of debt
To God who is the giver of the breath,
Revealed in part, unknowable in whole.
He is, before my birth, beyond my death,
The maker and sustainer of my soul.
Adjust my eyes to greater glories see;
Thereby produce in me humility.
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“One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.”
Stewardship matters. Continue reading
I’ve been trying to come up with a good blog post topic for the last couple of days with no real success. Plenty of ideas have floated through my brain, but each one felt redundant or forced. Continue reading
At the word of the Maker, the earth
Is brought forth to revolve round the sun
To the praise and the glory of one
Who possesses an infinite worth.
He shines forth from perfection’s high’st form,
From great Zion, with sounds of a choir.
Ev’ry step is preceded by fire;
When he walks, he is shrouded in storm.
His salvation is given, not bought,
For he owns all that we could present.
Sacrifices for vices are spent,
Yet they profit the Almighty naught.
So walk not in the pathways of death.
Ponder life ‘fore your lips claim his pow’r.
Let the fear of the Lord fill each hour,
And let thanksgiving fill ev’ry breath.
I’m not a huge fan of attention. My friends and family laugh because I won’t make a big deal about awards or accomplishments. When I play with the Stephen Michel Band, I like to hide in the back of the stage behind everyone else. I tend to downplay things a bit too much. I realize that some things should be celebrated, however, and I don’t want to appear apathetic about major events. So, with that being said, here are a few updates.
Two weeks ago, I received the Broadman & Holman Seminarian Award from NOBTS. Saturday, I graduated with my Masterof Divinity degree with a specialization in Christian Thought. I hope to continue on at seminary, pursuing a PhD in theology with the hope of teaching and writing full time. That may change over time depending on God’s leading, but, until he leads elsewhere, I plan to stay on this course.
I want to thank everyone who played a part in my seminary experience so far. God has used these last four years to shape me in many ways. I’ve read hundreds of pages, I’ve written thousands of words, and learned more than I imagined I would. Through it all, God used friends and family to continually sharpen and challenge me, to equip and encourage me, and to make me the man I am today. I see my limitations more clearly than ever before, yet I also see God’s faithfulness to use us, weak as we are, for the kingdom. I pray God will be glorified by my life always, and I thank you for helping to make me the man he wants me to be. May we be found faithful.
Occasionally, the church will highlight a specific show or movie that it feels warrants some attention, often employing social media to convey their message.
I take up pen and page to point to truth
And pray my purpose is not rendered vague.
I recognize my mind reveals my youth;
Lord, let me neither tarry nor stravage.
I am a humble runnel of your reign.
Use these my words like water to refresh.
And when I feel my writing is in vain,
Remind me that I do not write for flesh.
These poems need not please the multitude.
These words require no mortal praise nor fame.
These messages may never earn my food;
I pray they ever glorify your name.
I write to please the one who knows my end.
I offer these, my poems for the wind.