I AM…

Truth revealed through a tender heart
The hands shaping wounds into works of art
Eyes that see beauty in the deepest of flaws
Who gives hope to every hopeless cause
Foundation when everything trembles around
What lifts your spirit when you’ve lost ground
The Rock of Ages in your sinking sands
A quiet still voice against the world’s demands
Maker of ways when there’s no way out
Reason for believing when filled with doubt
The light of salvation when you’ve given up
The end of thirst when you drink from my cup
Everything good beneath your broken view
Love, the Creator, and I dwell within you

This is more than a declaration of my spiritual beliefs. Each statement above represents each individual’s capacity to receive and give and BE love. There is a way to convey truth that isn’t harmful, threatening or hurtful in its delivery and intent. While some express an ease in living in denial or ignorance; this perspective is disingenuous to one’s true being. Truth isn’t always welcome, and it often travels on airs of subjectivity, causing the hearer to tune out. However, whether the hearer is someone else or you, learning to deliver and receive and BE truth is necessary to realizing a life of integrity.

Everyone is wounded. Everyone has hidden parts. Often, we sacrifice the fullness of life by constantly licking those wounds or hiding behind those secret places of hurt and insecurity. Overcoming isn’t about ignoring or forgetting; it’s about learning, reshaping and offering a testimony. What good is any pain if you do not grow from it? What good are your past experiences, if they are not used to help others going through similar trials? The key word being “good”… what “good” can come of the bad you’ve known?

Love is blind. No, it is not! Love sees all, and accepts all for what it is. Yes, we want the best for and of ourselves and those we care about… some of us even want the best for and of the world at large. But let’s be honest, nothing in this life is perfect (whatever perfect means). Criticism reigns within and without on so many levels, as this world dictates a clone mentality… look like this… think like that… measure your being up against the skew of a few. Beautiful is what makes you – YOU. What makes you special… physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually… is that which defines your unique contribution to the universe. Sameness is like listening to an orchestra and hearing only one note.

Who or what is your “go to” when you feel defeated? They say misery loves company. Well, I know nothing draws out darkness like light; it draws it and drowns it with hope and stability, pouring out a reassurance which lets you know that you will survive the sinking ship. Some are blessed to have others in their lives who serve as a rock; others are blessed to be that rock; and, many can only find the source of comfort they need beyond humanity’s angels. If you don’t have a source of uplifting… reach out, because there is ALWAYS someone willing to share joy with another’s heart.

Be still my aching heart. There is holiness in being still, in bringing peace to all the beating impulses of the mind and body. We often want to run, act, react, force, move, control… and in those desires, we lose our center. Rashness and anxiousness take over and master our wills and senses as we stand in defensiveness against the world. But in the stillness… in the calm… in the meditation… in the prayer… in the soothing whisper of a loved one, we can regain composure, perspective and presence. We must remember to carry a stillness within to balance the chaos among us.

Some believe in karma, while others see no consequence. Some believe everything happens for a reason, while others believe in chance. Some believe in free will, while others believe in destiny. Some believe in judgment. Some believe in nothing at all. Most, I think, believe in some combination of these. My faith rests in the guidance and protection of my God, Yahweh, while others define the Creator in other ways, if they, in fact, believe in a Creator. Even for the non-spiritual, however, there has to be a driving force internally or externally which prods one to persevere. Perhaps it is the human condition for them. I know, for me, too many miracles have occurred… too many paths have been uncovered… too many chances have been bestowed… too many tragedies have been survived… too many endings have been avoided… and too many unimaginable blessings have adorned my life for me to not believe in something greater than myself… greater than humanity… greater than this world.

This world confines, speaks doubt and negativity, and finds ways to extinguish the spirit of innocence and altruism. And yet, here we are. You and I, he and she, us and them… constantly fighting to reveal something beautiful, engaging, inspiring, and evolving… something so much more than what exists on the surface of existence. In as much as God is here for me, I am here for you, and you are here for someone else. We are all capable of leading someone else somewhere better; and, through the process, will find ourselves improved.

Everlasting life in His cup… the salvation of His sacrifice… the goodness He creates from our falls and failures… yes, these are my beliefs… my mantras… my “self-talk.” How similar or dissimilar these are from other faiths, I do not know. I do know that LOVE in and of itself is life giving. I do know that sharing LOVE with others is contagious and has brought many souls out of isolation and suffering. I do know that LOVE has seen through the dark, ugly and hateful, and has transformed hardened hearts and vexatious minds into completely new spirits of joy and abundance. I do know the power of LOVE… in God… in myself… and in you.

Challenge for Growth Prompt #5: I Am Love

Failure to Be

I sit in this awareness, trying hard to see a blank canvas;

stressing my heart’s biases to melt away into a quiet place;

squeezing this ever sense of urgency to cool its heels and breathe

through its impulses to make everything better.

It will all be what it will all be… and yet,

I still inhale need and exhale salvation; as if

my only salvation is to be needed.

God loves me

because I am the child who makes him laugh the hardest.

At times, His humored tears touch my spirit, letting me know

I have put on an excellent show, and now it’s time to resign.

But these veins are ambitious; harboring

this blood infused with endless purpose; embodied in

this being of unsettled life.

A state of rest is foreign and intrusive to my design.

What does it mean to not do, say, think, feel…

impose my essence into the universal echo

at all times?

This may be my only existence in this reality.

Therefore, in good conscience, I can never just be.

Challenge for Growth Prompt #3: Learning to Be

Fingerprints

Impressions more than linger
in the complex layers of my heart
From start to finish, your threads dominate
this fabric of being, scripted in love
I see only so much, and in that portion;
not nearly enough of what I should
Ignorance and folly abounds, and still,
you dance on my breaths and
glisten from my eyes; gifting
my presence with yours
Anything I adore is child’s play
beside the infinite trembling of my soul
within the reverent contemplation
of your affection for me
All these broken pieces giving meaning
to my tenderness, the language of your
tongue on despairing ears; and
purpose to my pores, which
whisper understanding,
often beyond reason
because you need none
In stark conflict with self, I bleed you
through worldly wounds beyond
my comprehension; and am warmed
knowing grace is your answer,
when mercy is mine
Veins empower insubordination, but
a child of Light can never fall far;
spirit-bound, I am trussed to your
essence for eternity
Every moment on the scale of forever,
I will rest in the center of your hand,
folding into the lines of your everlasting
fingerprints, from which I was formed.

Unto You

Bellows burst open the careful seaming of my soul,
as I lift up my being to the Lord.
Wearing this offering best with abandon; if I
arrived clothed, soon I won’t be anymore.
Love rises from these faults and failures, like
the trembling chords of freedom’s first cry.
Your embrace unfolds all my secrets,
taking death to renew this child’s life.
Out loud, You shine through exalting’s stance;
in palms’ submitting, face’s illuminating,
eyes’ pouring out of your proof, while feet
dance in the rivers of Glory’s wading.
My tongue swells with praise, and these days
fade with moments of profound Presence.
With the salted wet pores which seep my wear, I
wipe away this playground’s dust from my senses,
leaving room for your restoration only.
Cleanse my spirit with angels’ harmony:
the blistering fire; the smoldering flame; the
gentle flicker… all the same, engulfing me.
The sound of your grace cannot be named;
the depth of your mercy to no phrasing belongs.
All I can offer in the surrender of my all –
the float of my voice upon the heart of my song.

For Dungeon Prompt: Take Me To Church

Juxtaposition

I am over this underwhelming

Reclaiming what was never lost

Feeling the depth of unfeeling

when payments don’t cover the cost

Wearing nudes to dress my soul

Invested partner in the walk alone

Hidden in what’s been exposed

Giving up notions of “my own”

Flying highest among the fallen

Where I’m broken, His love has sewn

Now I sink into the heavens

as a stranger where I belong.