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Archive for the month “January, 2012”

Empty

by Lewis Hamilton
from the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

I’m someone who is on the go,
life should be full of fun
But deep inside I’m empty
like a convict on the run

I appear to be so happy
with people always around
Sometimes I feel so down and out
I’m dragging on the ground

There’s something here that’s missing
There has to be some more
I’m searching hard for answers,
Knocking on every door

Please help me if you can today,
my spirit’s feeling low
You may think I’m so happy
but I have misery you don’t know

For when the crowds are gone,
nobody there but me,
there’s something desperately missing
for I am so empty.

Corresponding Scripture I Peter 1:18

Are You Running On Empty?

I remember many times my dad would notice that my gas needle was on or close to the E!  He would always bring it to my attention. I guess he didn’t want to get stranded somewhere with me!  It wasn’t that I couldn’t afford the gas.  It was just a matter of convenience.  I knew or thought I knew just how far the needle could go down.  When it was close to the E maybe it wasn’t quite empty!  I’d pass a gas station…nah, I’m not quite on the E yet.  My dad said to me more than once “You know Lewis, it’s just as easy to keep it halfway full to full, as it is empty to halfway full.”  It was a good piece of advice. Why not fill your tank up, then when it reads  half a tank fill it again?  Maybe you are a lot like I was with your car.  Maybe you wait until you’re almost empty.

Many of us are like that in our spiritual life!  We don’t call on God until we desperately need him.  We wait and pass on the opportunity to refuel until it is almost too late!  We try to pour other things into our spiritual gas tank!  Things that we think will keep us going, only to learn later that what we thought would fill the need doesn’t!

This next poem is called “Empty”.  It was actually written about a person I knew.  This person was one of the most active, fun, outgoing, and alive individuals around!  Yet the words to this poem came when I wondered what this person would really tell me if they could?  Were they living the happy life we all saw or were they running on empty?

Coming up next…the poem “Empty”

Empty

by Lewis Hamilton
from the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

I’m someone who is on the go,
life should be full of fun
But deep inside I’m empty
like a convict on the run

I appear to be so happy
with people always around
Sometimes I feel so down and out
I’m dragging on the ground

There’s something here that’s missing
There has to be some more
I’m searching hard for answers,
Knocking on every door

Please help me if you can today,
my spirit’s feeling low
You may think I’m so happy
but I have misery you don’t know

For when the crowds are gone,
nobody there but me,
there’s something desperately missing
for I am so empty.

For you know that you were redeemed from your empty way of life inherited from the fathers, not with perishable things like silver or gold,
I Peter 1:18

My Spiritual Exam

by Lewis Hamilton
from the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

Just like I need a physical
to find out how I am
It’s time for me to ask my Lord
for a spiritual exam

He’ll ask me many questions
Can I be honest with myself?
Thinking that I’ve got it made
could be harmful to my health

Is my gear shifted into drive
or is it stuck in park?
Does my light shine on others
or do I leave them in the dark?

Is my salt being poured out
or is it all for waste?
Does it flavor when it’s poured
or has it lost its taste?

When he gives me the vision
to see how I can be
will I make excuses
or let the Lord use me?

Will my spirit be broken
so my life he then can mold?
Or have I pushed the button
to put the Lord on hold?

When I leave the great physician’s room
will I be better than I came?
Or have I made my mind up
to keep my life the same?

“…I desire to do your will, O my God,
your law is within my heart.”

Psalm 40:8

Doctor? Please!

Nobody I know likes to go to the doctor!  Sometimes it is something we have to do because of illness.  Other times it is just a yearly visit.   The fact is I don’t see many people excited about these visits.  There is always the fear of bad news as the reality sets in that we are not getting any younger!

How many times do you go to the doctor and get right in?  Usually it seems that everything is backed up.  You have an appointment at 2 and you don’t get in until after 2:30.  Sitting in a waiting room when you are feeling ill isn’t good!  The knowledge that sick people have waited in the room before you may make you feel sicker than when you came in!  Finally you get in and in 5 or 10 minutes you are through!  You wonder how you can be charged so much for so little!

 

Then there is the advice we don’t want to hear!  Joe said to Tom “What did the doctor tell you at your last appointment?”  “He told me I was too heavy”, Tom replied.  “He said I need to start eating right, quit smoking, get off the couch and get moving, and quit drinking too!”  “What are you going to do first?”, Joe inquired.  Tom blurted out “I’m going to get another doctor!”

Doctor

As important as it is to get a physical exam, a spiritual exam is even more important!  The nice thing is we don’t have to wait and this exam is free!  When we are ready the doctor is ready too!  He is even waiting for us!  Sadly, the case above also may hold true in this exam. We may not want to hear the changes that must be made!  As in the case of the medical doctor though, the advice is for our own good!  As always God leaves the choice completely up to us.  We must be willing to change, and seek the help of the one who can change us!  When we put our trust in the great physician and follow his guide he will make the changes that will put us in right standing with him again!  It’s a healthy choice for our spirit!

Coming up next:   My Spiritual Exam

My Spiritual Exam

by Lewis Hamilton
from the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

Just like I need a physical
to find out how I am
It’s time for me to ask my Lord
for a spiritual exam

He’ll ask me many questions
Can I be honest with myself?
Thinking that I’ve got it made
could be harmful to my health

Is my gear shifted into drive
or is it stuck in park?
Does my light shine on others
or do I leave them in the dark?

Is my salt being poured out
or is it all for waste?
Does it flavor when it’s poured
or has it lost its taste?

When he gives me the vision
to see how I can be
will I make excuses
or let the Lord use me?

Will my spirit be broken
so my life he then can mold?
Or have I pushed the button
to put the Lord on hold?

When I leave the great physician’s room
will I be better than I came?
Or have I made my mind up
to keep my life the same?

“…I desire to do your will, O my God,
your law is within my heart.”

Psalm 40:8

Time

By Lewis Hamilton
From the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

I have time on my hands,
quick, flick on the TV
It is so automatic,
security to me

Oh yes, I am a Christian
but it never occurs to me,
the extra time that I have found
could be time my spirit feeds

I’ve heard the expression all my life,
I have some time to kill
Just throwing it away so quickly,
please help me do your will

I claim that I love you God,
why do go my way?
You want me to obey you
and listen to what you say

I have no trouble sitting
for hours around the TV,
but when it comes to praying,
Lord, look over me

The Lord showed me a true test,
one to put me back in line
Whatever is important to me
is how I’ll spend my time

I’ve wasted so much of my life,
please help me draw the line
and give you all I have, dear Lord,
especially my time.

Be joyful always, pray continually,
give thanks in all circumstances, for
this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

I Thessalonians 5:16-18

How to become a Special Agent!

Just after new years I’m amazed by how busy the Rec Center that I am a member of is!  For at least a week that place is so crowded,  I have a hard time getting into a game or using a machine.  Then, a week later it seems the place is back to normal.  This reminds me of our Christian walk!  How many times have you told yourself I’m going to pray more this next year? I’m going to read the bible more!   I’m going to get closer to God!  Maybe when you read the Secret Agent poem you say I’m not going to be a Secret Agent anymore…and yet a week later you are right back where you started.

My former pastor told a story about a lady he was counseling.  She said “pastor, I’m going to walk with God more and I’m going to pray more!”  Right away he said to us sadly “I knew that she was on a path to failure”  You see, she was doing it on her own strength.  When we say I’m going to do this or that we are depending on ourselves.

You may wonder about the title Special Agent.  I’m using this term as the opposite of a Secret Agent.  You may have decided you don’t want to be a Secret Agent anymore.  Now is the time to change, but you must know where your strength lies!  If you read the poems earlier about Fast Food Christianity and The Americanized Gospel, is there any wonder we become Secret Agents?  We are depending on ourselves again instead of his strength!  When we make a decision to make God the most important thing in our lives, we can become Special Agents!

It’s more than saying I’m going to do this or that!  It’s actually spending quality time praying and reading the bible!  It’s depending on his strength rather than ours.  It’s asking for his will in our life instead of our own.  It’s not a one way prayer either, it involves a longing to do his will and desiring to be put in a position where you can be that Special Agent that he can use! If you really want to be a Special Agent start with a trip to your knees.  When you spend quality time with God, people will notice! Continue to walk in his strength and not your own and you will become a Special Agent!

The next poem “Time” is interesting!  We are all given the same amount of time in a day!  How we use it is up to us!

Coming up next: “Time”

Don’t be a Secret Agent!

Secret Agent

By Lewis Hamilton
From the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

I keep my beliefs to myself
as much Lord, as I can
Please don’t make me testify
I’ll be your secret agent man

I‘ll mingle with my co-workers,
we have to get along
But deep down in my spirit
I’ll sing your gospel song

They’ll never know just how I feel,
I’ll hide it, that’s my plan
I won’t stand out from the rest
I’m your secret agent man

I go to church on Sunday
I hope that is enough
But talking to my fellow workers,
that would be too rough

Bless me Lord, as I sit there
as quiet as a mouse
Bless the things that I do
and everyone in my house

For you know Lord, I do my best
well almost all I can
Please don’t make me stand out
I’ll be your secret agent man

The Lord talked to me the other night
while I was sound asleep
He told me I was wrong
in the attitude I keep

He said he’d be ashamed of me
if I was ashamed of him
So there he changed my attitude
after I confessed my sins

Now I don’t cover up my light
I shine it all I can
There is no place in God’s army
for a secret agent man.

corresponding verse Mark 8:38

Are you a Secret Agent?

Before I share the poem “Secret Agent” with you I’d like to share some thoughts!  Excactly what is a secret agent?  Well by definition a secret agent is someone who is an agent but nobody knows they are!  They blend in with the crowd and appear to be just like everyone else.  They hide their real purpose and show people only the side that doesn’t stand out!  Secret Agents don’t talk about the real issues because of the fear that they will give their cover away.  People must never find out who they really are!  They try to serve their purpose in secret.

In our christian walk let us be the opposite of secret agents!  Let our light shine on others in such a way that everyone will know that we are agents of the most high living God!  Let his love pour through us so we can help a hurting world openly!  I pray that when people see us they will know where we stand!  I pray that if you are a secret agent for Christ, you will cease to be ashamed of your faith and gladly share!  Let everyone know what you believe and never be timid or secretive!

Coming up..The Poem…“Secret Agent”

Secret Agent

By Lewis Hamilton
From the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

I keep my beliefs to myself
as much Lord, as I can
Please don’t make me testify
I’ll be your secret agent man

I‘ll mingle with my co-workers,
we have to get along
But deep down in my spirit
I’ll sing your gospel song

They’ll never know just how I feel,
I’ll hide it, that’s my plan
I won’t stand out from the rest
I’m your secret agent man

I go to church on Sunday
I hope that is enough
But talking to my fellow workers,
that would be too rough

Bless me Lord, as I sit there
as quiet as a mouse
Bless the things that I do
and everyone in my house

For you know Lord, I do my best
well almost all I can
Please don’t make me stand out
I’ll be your secret agent man

The Lord talked to me the other night
while I was sound asleep
He told me I was wrong
in the attitude I keep

He said he’d be ashamed of me
if I was ashamed of him
So there he changed my attitude
after I confessed my sins

Now I don’t cover up my light
I shine it all I can
There is no place in God’s army
for a secret agent man.

corresponding verse Mark 8:38

Fast Food Christianity

By Lewis Hamilton
From the book “The Gardener and My Garden” c1997

Fast food restaurants
Computer Technology
Knowledge expanding
We’re in the new century

Planes flying everywhere
Scanners at the stores
Medical technology
like never before

Microwave ovens
next to fax machines
Instant relief from pain
Quick oil changings

Quick drying, fast moving
products that we try
See it on a commercial
Soon you’re going to buy

Fast stop Christianity
service ends at noon
Better not end later,
OK if it’s too soon

Big fancy churches
buildings made for men
We won’t be too humble
so God cannot come in

Sunday afternoon restaurant,
smorgasboard and all
Preacher got long winded
giving an altar call

Break this heavy chain, Lord
I’m spiritually tied
Fast food Christianity
has me satisfied.

corresponding verse James 1:27

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