Not as Strong as we Think we are

12182429_691791734255055_8705583053301991616_o[1]I write, not because I think I am brilliant, (we know that’s not the case) but I write to let a melody of my soul pass thru my mind, where it gives thought and meaning to the feelings which so possess me. A possession that echos thru the very core of my being. An Echo of a memory of long ago, or of late, it doesn’t matter. But, the ripples it leaves reverberate into my being leaving it’s mark like a stream’s course on the rock of time.

I’m not a poet, though I love poetry. I am not a musician though I 10717840_4806756344997_1067152170_nlong for the melodies. I do not write lyrics, nor put words that fashion thoughts with rhythm, but those who do I long for your skill and artistry. To move people with more than just emotion, but with song and lyrics, express the deepest longing of the soul, or trouble of our heart.
One such song echoes on in my mind, years after the artist has left us bodily, but thru his poetry and notes expressing something of ourselves that we can’t quit say on our own. ( This is why we need artists.) Rich Mullins, known for his musical career, but should be known for his lifestyle, wrote this song, We are Not as Strong as We Think We Are.

In it he writes,

10518685_4517389631010_3412029059414279269_n[1]We are frail, we are fearfully and wonderfully made, Forged in the fires of human passion, Choking on the fumes of selfish rage. And with these our hells and our heavens, So few Inches apart, We must be Awfully small and Not as strong as we think we are.”

As I grow older, I hope wiser, I find that it is so True. We have sometimes these great experiences and great highs, but in our next moment, our next breath we are found in the deepest pits of our lives. Our hells are just breaths away at times from the Heavens of our lives. We all to often find we are at the mercies of circumstances and really not the Captain or our fate as we once believed.
Tossed by the storms of life, we are bashed upon the rocks of sickness, pain, and loss.. What started out as a nice day with calm 9336_638132586216104_2087470888_n[1]skies turns quickly, and we are flung into chaos. A storm comes, bringing with it the power to kill our dreams, steal our hopes, and destroy our faith. It is when our lives don’t make sense, our paths our obscured, that our lungs cry out while “choking on the fumes of selfish rage,” that we are aware that “we must be awfully small, and not as strong as we think we are.”

I know there are stories of those who overcome the storms. I know even in the Bible, Jesus comes thru the storm walking on the water to the Disciples as they cry out in fear, and Peter even calls out to Jesus asking to come out of the boat toward him… Another time Jesus is asleep in the boat as it is assumingly sinking, while the Disciples are panic stricken, trying to save themselves, Jesus calmly speaks to the storm and calms the sea.. Well, I am not Jesus. Right now I am not walking on the water, nor asking too. And I am not even sure how I got into this boat that I am in, yet I am stricken none-the-less. I am fearful. I am weak and frail.

To those who see me, I am the rudder of the boat. The mast for the sails to hold on to. But, on the inside…. I am the ship tossed on the currents of life. I am a ripped sail, not holding the wind long enough to give direction or forward movement.

In the song Rich writes,

If you make me laugh I know I could make you like me. Cause 13244872_10206366196059558_7674456399507053686_n[2]when I laugh I can be a lot of fun. But we can’t do that I know that it is frightening. What I don’t know is why we can’t hold on. We Can’t Hold on.”

I feel my grip at times loosening. I feel the wind, the joys blow by, but I can’t hold on to it . I feel the memories, but for now sorrow and pain strike at the hull of the ship, toss my emotions back and forth. Nothing is steady.

13240047_10206366194939530_9197296461491753348_n[2]Normally I am a fun guy. I am out going, energetic and usually laughing; and “I know if you make me laugh I know I could make you like me, Cause when I laugh I can be a lot of fun.. But when we can’t do that I know that it is frightening”….. because, would you still like me?
Right now I am trembling like a hill on a fault-line, and when everything that is made is shaken what will remain? If the mast breaks, and sails are torn, will we keep abiding in the ship bound to one another, or will be toss everything overboard and jump for safety?
I am confident in one thing.. The God that bids me come, the God that is the harbor in the storm, a light in the darkness, will preserve us. That it is not so much my grip or my ability as much as it is His and His Sovereignty that will sustain. So, I will rest in the bow of the boat. I will “Cast my cares on Him for He cares for me.”

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Fishing for Words

I love fishing. Well, I use to love fishing. I loved watching fishing shows, competitions, whatever I could. I 208625_1006683625554_2761212_n[1]use to love being on the water, early in the morning, sun just coming up over the crest of the earth bringing to live all the rays touch. The gentle lap of the water against the hull of the boat. Positioning everything for that first cast..

A Great movie all should see, A River Runs Through It. In it Norman McLean says, “in the Arctic half-light of the canyon, all existence fades to a being with my soul and memories and the sounds of the Big Blackfoot River and a four-count rhythm and the hope that a fish will rise”.

Sometimes writing is like fishing, you have to leave your line in the water long enough to catch something. Also, the more you do it, the better you get. For me, I have not had my line in the water in a long time. I have forgotten how to cast upon the water. I have lost my positioning. The rhythm is off,  and my technique  rusty at best. So, this is me rising early once again, feeling the morning gradually awaking from the night. My boat is now my chair, my pole is the computer that sits in my lap, I will now attempt once again to catch my passion for words. Not just any words, but words so strung together that thought and poetry give way to meaning and cohesiveness. May my words form character and body, constructing the emotion and feelings of  this moment in time.
197449_1006683665555_4733849_n[2]The water is calm this morning; the wind is yet somewhat turbulent. The clouds loom, not allowing the morning rays to cast it’s light. Yet, the fish, words, are stirring. Maybe something will bite.

I don’t fish, write, for a living. (A dream it would be for sure.) I do it because it makes me feel alive. I do it for the peace it gives. The click of the keys, the flow of the words like the current of the lake, each click lapping the hull of the boat. A rhythm sets in. A pattern.. I’m not looking to catch a lot, just one good one. One story. One thought
Many casts with many stokes of the keys, getting fewer and fewer nibbles. All it takes is that one. It’s not like I am going to keep it. I will just let it go. But in catching that thought, bringing it in, and releasing it, I feel a sense of accomplishment. Conquering? Maybe.. Understanding? More likely. Of myself.. and hopefully to those around me. I write because I feel the words. I cast my words out and draw them back in a rhythmic pattern, slowly at times and then fast at others.. At times I just let them free fall, “in hope that a fish will rise,” a thought will be captured, a truth be told, and understanding gained.

The Scriptures tell us to “Cast your bread upon the water, and it will return upon every wave.” So this is 200053_1006683705556_7455236_n[1]me.. I am pulling away from the shore once more. I am going to my favorite spot. I am grabbing the best, or what I deem appropriate for the moment.

It has been a long time since I have fished. It has been a while since I have had to position myself.  I will find the rhythm again… The thoughts are there, pooled under the cliff. I lift my rod and I cast..
I write..