Anyone who knows me and has seen my poems will be able to extract the message from the biographical history contained in them. But my primary reader—are you ready for this—is me. Much of what I have shared in verse are thoughts I must never forget. My poems are written to remind me of the person I have become, how I got here. They are written to encourage me to hold on tight in faith to the God who has walked beside all these years. If I may, let me extract a few lines from a few poems to expand.
Perhaps, I should start with something someone else wrote, put to music, and then passed on where it was sung over 200 times by a group of teenagers in upstate New York at a youth camp. I remember the chorus. Here’s how we sang it:
Lord don't let me fail, I want to make the bride, When my way is dark, keep me by your side When my faith is weak, only let me see, Something in my life, that You have done for me.
Life is filled with challenge. Our faith in God and His provisions is mockingly questioned by a culture that finds Bible based principles hopelessly olde worlde. Admittedly, we must with resolute conviction stand up in the controversial social winds that blow.
and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore... Ephesians 6:13b-14a [KJV]
I took to verse to remind myself always that my faith wants the support of my testimony. In “Reflections” I wrote
The signposts left along the way Are markers where I stopped to pray Enlisting angels in the strife— A testimonial to my life.
In “I Miss the Good Old Days” I reminded myself of the youth camp experience and the months that followed at an old fashion altar:
I really miss the good old days. My faith is not a fraud! My soul reached out in simple praise To touch the heart of God. When youthful hearts at altar rails Beat strong in simple praise, Not harrowed with presumed details Of science—now the rage. When spiritual things were wondrous new And Jesus then was awed, Back then there was one thing to do: I lived to worship God.
In “The Child I Was” I encouraged myself to hold tight to those early days of my new found love for the Savior: [Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it. – Proverbs 22:6]
There’s an adage told which was true of old In the record of history: That the child I was and the child I am is the child I’ll always be. And now I’m old and if truth be told I’ll be forever glad: How I fell in love with the Word of God when I was but a lad. The desire to pray I have today And which is a part of me Is the child I was and the child I am and the child I’ll always be.
I am 75 years along the way and there are far fewer steps out of the woods ahead than behind. My prayer daily is, “Lord, remind me of all you have done for me.” My prayer always:
Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. - Psalm 25:4
In “As Enoch Walked” I prayed:
Lord, keep me from mere self pursuit With Heaven out of view Instead may I stay true through life By walking close to You.