The Secret

priscilla-du-preez-201730-unsplash.jpg

Contentment is not found within a lack
Of ev’ry good and perfect gift bestowed,
For some with no possessions answer back,
Embittered by what ne’er to them was owed.

Contentment is not found in much excess,
In temp’ral pleasures, comforts of this earth,
For some see all their wealth as somehow less
Than adequate to validate their worth.

The secret lies not in the circumstance
But in the hope held by the seeking soul.
Events tempt t’ward despair or bid us dance.
In both extremes, the Lord retains control.

Nothing in history has e’er sufficed
To satisfy our souls save only Christ.


Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Thanks to Maci for her feedback on this poem.

Lean Not On Your Own Understanding

eric-muhr-787761-unsplash.jpg

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD, and turn away from evil.
Proverbs 3:5-7

Have you ever tried to stop leaning on your own understanding? It isn’t like avoiding other temptations. In many situations, you can avoid giving into temptation by avoiding the object upon which your temptation fixates. When tempted to overeat, you can set limits for yourself and avoid keeping food nearby. When tempted to look at things you know you shouldn’t look at online, you can set up content filters on your devices. But how do you avoid leaning on your own understanding when you can’t avoid your mind or heart?

Continue reading

Fear and Trembling and Faith

daniel-lerman-670092-unsplash

Søren Kierkegaard used to intimidate me. In truth, he still does. He’s a daunting figure, both prolific in output and profound in thought. I viewed him as part of an undefined group of unapproachables, authors whose work lies beyond the scope of my ability to comprehend. But one of the joys of research is that you get to engage formidable thinkers and grapple with their work, approaching the unapproachables to learn their secrets. This semester, I spent some time researching Kierkegaard’s thought surrounding his book Fear and Trembling, and I was indeed challenged academically. However, the more I studied, the more I found myself challenged spiritually as well.

Continue reading