A Christmas Poem, “Hands”

Hands Open on your mother’s chest or after a bellowing belch. Taut when you’re tired. Slurp slurp, tick tick, your tongue tackles each knuckle and cuticle. Somehow that helps you fade away to never-never-land. Mine are calloused, crusty, tired. Splinters are their wages. Blue veins bursting. Palm lines peeling. Bleeding. Grab the balm and bandage. I’ll too visit never-never-land soon, only after watching you there now. For a moment I remember the memories we will make. Brush and comb. Throw and catch. Shave and wash. Swing and saw. Eat and write. Push and pull. Mine will train yours? That baffles … Continue reading A Christmas Poem, “Hands”

When God Burns Down Your House

Tragedy is a part of living in a broken world. More than a part, it’s inevitable. When tragedy strikes, our first question is, Why? Whether or not we get an answer, we quickly must ask a second, and perhaps even more important question, How do I deal with this? Think of a tragedy in your life recently. How did you deal with it? Perhaps you dismissed it, chalked it up to bad luck, stuffed your feelings, or even blamed someone (maybe yourself). Maybe you blamed God. And got angry with him. Anne Bradstreet’s poem Verses upon the Burning of our House, July 10th, 1666 teaches us how … Continue reading When God Burns Down Your House

A Christmas Poem: “Hands”

I wrote this poem for our church’s Christmas Eve gathering. The inspiration for this poem came while changing my son’s diaper. As Titus and I exchanged smiles that night, I pondered what it would have been like to be Joseph looking at his baby boy Jesus. As a father, I often feel inadequate to raise my children. I cannot imagine the helplessness Joseph must have felt knowing he was called to raise the Son of God! This poem is my simple effort to begin imagining, to live inside a few precious moments, late at night, after a hard day’s work, when daddy Joseph … Continue reading A Christmas Poem: “Hands”


Daily I am reminded of how careless I am with words. Thankfully, Christ died for the sins of my tongue just as much as any other sin. Here is a “Bible verse poem” compiled from Proverbs 10:19, Ephesians 4:29, Luke, 6:45, and Matthew 12:36-37. Lord, remind us of the power of our words Words When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent. The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his … Continue reading Words

I Heard the Bells

This famous Christmas carol was based on the poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  He penned these verses on Christmas Day 1863, when he found out that his son had been wounded in the Battle of New Hope Church during the American Civil War. I Heard the Bells Written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Performed by Jars of Clay. I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day Their old familiar carols play, And wild and sweet the words repeat Of peace on earth, good will to men. I thought how, as the day had come, The belfries of all Christendom Had rolled along … Continue reading I Heard the Bells