“Who said anything about safe?  ‘Course he isn’t safe.  But he’s good.  He’s the King, I tell you.”

–The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe

You’re breaking down the box I thought I put You in.
You never really could sit still in Church.
You’re moving mountains now without permission.
You’re finding me before I said to search.
You don’t exactly seem like I imagined,
They said a wild Jesus wouldn’t do
But now you look a like a lion
(Or lions look a little bit like You).
I used to be afraid to call you Jesus
Afraid You’d come and take my golden cow
But “righteousness” that once had kept me coming
Is nothing to the love that binds me now.
Your wild breath is falling on my forehead
Your wild song is filling up my ears
Your wild dance is swelling up inside me
And I am crying wild happy tears.
Now we’re coming closer to believing
The part You don’t do ever as You should
Yet had I wanted someone slightly safer
I’d serve a God of metal or of wood.
I’ve head a lot of talk of being found in You
But really all this finding’s not for me
‘Cause every time I hear the name of Jesus
I cannot help but lose myself in Thee.


The Grammarian

A Sonnet in Memory of Sheryl Topliff

A period. It’s over now go home.
We hoped the world would be our sacred space
But all our hopes were silenced by the stone
As punctuation rolled into its place.
Sometimes you love a sentence so much you
Hope and pray to God that it will last
But every savior winds up in a tomb
And every shining star will have its crash.
Though he paid little heed to grammar’s rules
and even now I hear his rolling laugh
this wonder has me grinning like a fool
for it was he disguised along the path!
With pen in hand at every tomb he stops
To draw a tail on every little dot.


Dry Bones

What about this world is making sense, again?
They go another day on 60 cents again.
He’s wearing sleeves to hide his wounded wrists again.
Another silent soul the others missed again.
I see the same sad story on the screen again.
She wanted to look like the magazine again.
A hundred broken souls are being used again.
A hundred broken souls here to abuse again.
The dad whose baby boy will never wake again.
The tired fake who made the same mistake again.
And here we go, my heart, it’s time to break again.
I’m not sure how much of this I can take again

But you are God I give you all my trust again.
Would you stoop down to breathe into the dust again?
You are God we give you all our trust again,
You alone can raise these dry bones up again.


Old Secrets

The best secrets are
the old ones,
The ones that
take time,
The secrets
that are free, and so
The best secrets
can’t be caught by
cutting costs, speeding up,
by increasing margins, or by
Sabbath secrets
don’t work
like that.
Nor do they announce
themselves to the
loud and irreverent,
the smooth or the proud,
But to those that till
the earth, whose rich-soil hearts
grow all things
in abundance.
Those who are bigger on the inside
than on the

Haven’t you heard? The
pure in heart already see God.

These secrets are feasts
in a fast food frenzy.
They are Dostoevsky
novels in a world
of religious magazines.
They are a well-kept garden.
But be warned:
You will get dirt
You may not have cell service
But you will,
if you listen closely
and rest your palm on the
earth’s beating chest,
be able to hear
the oldest and best secret—
the first secret—
that all but a
If you slow down
well enough, and
for long enough, and
with heart enough,
you can
still hear Him singing,

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