A fresh spring of joy
Rivers of living water
Come pouring down on our lives
His living presence
Coming in the little things
Making us aware of love

I rise seeking God
Out my window it is dark
The breaking of dawn
Calls me to remember this
God is waiting to be praised

I will wait on God
I seek Him with all my heart
I ask His gracious Spirit
Make your words my joy
With my mind engaged I come
Help me be ready to act

The following comes from the reading of Luke 24:13-25 and Henri Nouwen’s reflections on Jesus meeting the two on the road to Emmaus.  Henri Nouwen structures the five movements in this conversation: loss, presence, invitation, communion and mission.  He identifies these as the five main aspects of the Eucharist celebration.

This is a movement 
“Resentment to gratitude”
“Hardened heart to grateful heart”
Invited to come
Experience and affirm
His living presence with us

I will celebrate 
This movement in my body
The temple of God
The miracle of God’s choice
To live and dwell in my soul

Jesus is walking by you
Just as he did on the road
They did not recognize Him
Open our eyes, Lord

Their eyes were downcast
He asked “What are you thinking?”
They spoke the truth they could see
Despair ruled their hearts
Their dream was shattered
When Jesus spoke their hearts burned
But still they could not see Him

They listened to history
He explained from the prophets
This story that they were in
And about Himself
He prayed and he broke the bread
God comes to us in prayer

I know I’m like them
Circumstances will dictate
Unless I learn this lesson
When I pray He comes
My eyes are opened with faith
I choose who I will believe

I come this morning
The dawn is breaking today
You know my story
And thankfully I know yours
Let the light of life shine through

I will go forth with a message
A friendship available
Given to all who believe
Help me make you known

I pray you all are aware today that God is near you, and that you receive the gift of His presence, just as the two on the road to Emmaus had their eyes opened.  When you pray, God will open your eyes.  You will remember how your hearts burned when He walked beside you, when you were unaware of the reality of His kind presence.

Merry Christmas, blessings and peace.
With love,
Terry and Charlotte
December 24, 2011
Dedicated to the Servants of Christ, Memphis, Tennessee
For “A Christmas Eve Story” from my past
 click here

Mark Your Life

December 18, 2011

Mark your life with joy
Mark your life with vision
Mark your life with love
Mark your destiny with hope
Defeat the past with courage
Trouble is reality
Joy the antidote
I need a fresh wind
Rekindle the fire in me
Set my heart aflame
I will command joy
I have learned to use my mind
I will decide what I think
About life and death
Despair, guilt, shame, fear are gone
When I set head, heart, and gut
Who decides your destiny
Who will decide your future
Who speaks to the real issue
We all want to know
“Religion” fails us
Humans construct it with care
Why does it bring death
The human heart feels judgment
Forgiveness not practiced
Acceptance and love
The keys to relationship
Given free to all
Who seek to know what is true
Who seek to know what matters
I’m being transformed
My joy is larger than pain
Our lives are sacred
A treasure to be shared
The journey grows richer with time
I cannot explain
The joy I live with each day
Eternal friendship
Wisdom can be found
Mark your story with knowledge
What’s appropriate
And how to treat a person
Made in the image of God
“My hands off – heart in”
That means I’m not in control
I will do what I can do
Leave the rest to God
Seek wisdom with all my heart
And wait for the clarity
I am just a man
Ordinary one at that
Aware of my own greatness
Just because I am
With all my failures and sins
I discovered I am loved
So I will show up
I will mark my life with Peace
Like leaven that makes bread rise
A sweet aroma of joy
Will fill up my soul
© Terry S. Smith
December 17, 2011
“I came to give life and to give it abundantly.” Jesus
“Never, never, never give up!” Winston Churchill 
“Nothing in the World is as Important as a Human Being.” Landon Saunders
With thanks to Natalie Allan for sharing, “My hands off – heart in.”

Receive Divine Love

December 13, 2011

Suffering does have a purpose
Though it hurts beyond words
When you are falsely accused
And you choose to love

Forgiveness – a choice I make
A painful process I know
Son of Man and Son of God
One who shows me how

He endured the pain
All the rejection and shame
Physical, emotional
The loss of all family
Left alone to die for me

The question of faith
Each must give their own answer
I know the story
I’m reminded this season
When I sing “O Holy Night”

I fall on my knees
His story touches my soul
Takes me to the heart of God
Embraces the pain
Gives me the power to love
And forgive those who wronged me

You hear the invitation
To come and rest in His peace
To drink the living water
Receive Divine Love

I seek the silence
When I am quiet I hear
The quiet whisper
Of a love larger than me
Embracing my soul with joy

© Terry S. Smith
December 9, 2011
Inspired by the song “O Holy Night”, sung by David Phelps, (sent to me by Jerry Dantone, a high school friend), and reflections from the first letter Peter wrote in the New Testament. 

Little baby born in love

December 11, 2011

What will change our eyes to see
The magnitude of His grace
Little baby born in love
Became one of us
I want my children
And all of my grandchildren
To know this amazing love
Please send your angels
Attend to each one
May they experience You
And awaken to Your Joy
Another baby is coming
Olivia Margaret
And Preston was born on this day
Just eight years ago
Who will teach their eyes to see
The magnitude of His grace
Little babies born in love
Learn to live from us
© Terry S. Smith
December 11, 2011
This poem is dedicated to my grandchildren.  “The man who fears God, his children’s children will be blessed.”  This promise is yours:  Sydney, Wallace, Aubrey-Anne, Preston, Sterling, Maia, Peter, Isaac, Averil, and Olivia, who will arrive any day now!

Today I will choose …

December 6, 2011

He arrived first at the tomb
But he would not go inside
I wonder why this is so
Fear paralyzes

Simon Peter went inside
No body was to be found
The linen cloth lay folded
That covered his face

Faith welled up inside
When John saw the body gone
Before this none understood
Why he must be raised
They left and went to their homes
The son rose in a new day

Many stood stunned and sobbing
Kneeling at the tomb entrance
Two angels appeared to her
Sitting where He laid

“Why were you weeping”
“They have taken my Lord away”
“I cannot find him”
Jesus then stood before her
She did not recognize him

Do I see Jesus
Standing beside me today
Please open my eyes
Mary dearly loved Jesus
Jesus heard her tears of grief

Jesus asked her this question
“Tell me why you are weeping
Who is it you are looking for?”
She could not see him

Thinking he was the gardener
She asked, “Where have you laid him?”
I will go and retrieve him
Jesus said, “Mary”

When he spoke her name
She turned and cried, “Rabboni”
The word means teacher

“Mary, you cannot hold me
I must rise above the world
To be near to my Father
My God’s your Father”

Go tell this to my brothers
Mary Magdalene obeyed him 
And went directly to them
“I have seen the Lord”

Have you seen the Lord
Pray for faith to remember
If Jesus appeared to them
He’ll appear to you
Yes, He’ll come and dwell in you
Christ lives in those who believe

Today I will choose
Accept the truth of his love
Act by faith in Him
All of the fear will leave you
When you place your trust in Him

It is important to know
That Presence based on feelings
Is what robbed Mary that day
From seeing Jesus

Jesus is risen
He loves you and hears your cry
Listen and believe
© Terry S. Smith
December 4, 2011
These reflections were written after meditating on John 20.