What I Believe

October 5, 2012

I will see His face
He is observing my life
It’s a look of love
I choose what I will look at
I know what the face of love is
I accept the peace He gives
My faith is in Him
I am not righteous
I grew up in darkness
A light came cloaked in kindness
Gentleness and love
I looked in the face of God
In the face of mother love
My mother could not give
My father emotionally-handicapped
The God of all love
Sent grandmothers and neighbors
And His angels to attend
Unfailing love -what I know for sure
I love to tell His story
Light comes in darkness
The fire of joy can be lit
The human soul is restored
I trust in unfailing love
I rejoice in His friendship
This friend gave His life for me
There’s no one like Him
I choose what I seek
And who I will listen to
The loud voice of fear
Hidden behind guilt and shame
Must be brought into the light
I will speak the truth
I’ll watch when the door opens
Be ready to give
Make the mysterious love
Plain to those who are seeking
You have blessed my home
With patience and loving care
Crowned with forgiveness
Psalms 11-15; Proverbs 3;
Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

Wisdom Available

October 4, 2012

To find the treasure

Ear – listen for wisdom

Eye – search with great intent

Heart – apply the understanding


Then you’ll understand

What it means to revere God

Gain knowledge of God

You’ll discover the wisdom

Embrace the insights


You’re my shield, O God

Your righteousness –  my protector

I walk in your peace

Your promises restore me

Your Divine Power saves me

Psalm 7:10     


I will trust in you

With all my heart I seek you

It’s you I believe

You have never forsaken

Those who seek with all their heart

Psalm 9: 9,10


Is there room for God

Pride can fill up the heart

Lust will poison it

Greed causes one to act out

These three things bring great destruction


God helps the fatherless ones

Breaks the arm of the wicked

The Lord is King forever

You rule with mercy


Proverbs 2; Psalms 6-10;

Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

Command Joy

October 2, 2012

There is a way to command joy

A truth I learned through the years

It will take your best thinking 

Learned through suffering


Thoughtful reflections

When there seems to be no hope

The cry of desperation

Of a child who’s all alone

Is heard in the darkest hour


There is energy

Available to those who ask

It is joy for life


Over thirty years ago, Landon Saunders spoke to me about the fact that “you can command joy.”  It is true.  We visited again this past weekend, and he spoke that it is not something you will get to “someday”, but it is an “energy” you can access in the now.  Think with me about it this month.

During the month of October, I invite you to read and reflect with me through Psalms and Proverbs.  Over the years, Psalms has been my mother and Proverbs has been my father.  They gave me language for my pain, hope for my future and joy for my present.  I read through them every month, and find something new every time.

Living with the Unseen

September 20, 2012

The unseen darkness will lie
The unseen light will give life
I choose what I will look at
I’ll listen to Him
His words bring me life
I meditate and draw near
My gift is that I can choose
God’s Spirit follows
When I practice believing
His words above all others
I see the unseen
Looking back I’ve come to see
All things pass away
My memories I can see
They are the things that are real
When I trust in God
I cannot be defeated
Death itself cannot destroy
All the fear is gone
I live with a living hope
An inexpressible joy
Some memories give me life
Some memories bring me death
Years of trusting God each day
Brings healing and hope
This is a practice 
Focusing on what is true
Jesus comes to teach
Personal and intimate friend
He’s always glad to see me
I bow in reverence
I look at me through His eyes
I accept His love
Proverbs 20:24, II Corinthians 4:17, 18,
Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

Divine Perspective

September 19, 2012

Living close to you

Is the Divine perspective

When I awake your my joy

I’ve learned the story

I have listened carefully

Above all the noise and lies


Joy calls me to you

I will obey your commands

They are my delight


Seeing you is life

The tragedies and the storms

The injustice and the lies

That are all around

The death that is untimely

Could destroy us but they don’t


I’m knocked down but not destroyed

Broken but I found healing

A sinner but forgiven

Desperate with hope


Who will have the final word

In quiet I’m listening

My feelings will lie to me

When stressed I am blind


One voice calms my soul

In stillness I will focus

He comes to me in nature 

And a life of love


Who will I believe

Who speaks to what’s happening

The internal war

My soul will ask the questions

Who can speak to these issues


You will find the peace

This world will not give to you

What only God can


“Do not be afraid”

He said to them in their grief

“My peace I give to you.”


Rest is the true word

It’s available to all

Quietness and trust

Is the most difficult work

It’s the battle worth fighting


These are not just words.  They reveal a path marked for generations to honest searching people.  It is the gentle and strong call to come to life and freedom.  He invites us to come and seek.  You will find!

John 14:27, Isaiah 30:15, 2 Corinthians 10:4, and “Jesus Calling” 9-12-12


The Mysterious

September 3, 2012

There is something inside me
That causes me to seek You
You placed that hunger in me
A longing I trust

It’s mysterious
Your invisible presence
I cannot prove it
But it’s undeniable
Head, heart and gut engaged

Each person is seen
No person is missed by You
This I am certain
Every cry is heard by You
The story I know tells me

I know I’m getting weaker
Physically I can feel it
Emotionally the losses
Drive me to my knees

I want to be strong
I have found a way to see
To not live in denial
Of my weaknesses
I discovered the secret
God’s power works in weakness

Our relationship will stand
When all of the others fail
Tested for generations
God’s passion to love

Insecurity hidden
Loneliness behind the mask
Fear paralyzes people
Who can provide peace

Only one gives true peace
It is available to all
Take time, listen well
His life speaks, his words follow
He prays now in heaven for you
He always lives to intercede for them.
Hebrews 7:25

70th Birthday

July 9, 2012


Who is this God, my Father

He is mighty in power

No limit to His insight

His understanding


He heals the brokenhearted

And He binds up the wounded

He knows the number of stars

Each of them by name


Listening and gentleness

Understanding your story

Then focusing on God’s story

You’ll find peace and hope


Come out of the pit

Open my eyes to what’s true

The unfailing love of God

Will be my delight

It’s where I place my hope

Lead me to those who are seeking


Each person is free to decide

But He will sustain the humble

I have chosen to listen

Focus on true love


I need wisdom & insight

I seek it with all my heart

I’ll define myself

By the one who gives me life

Who demonstrated His love

His tongue brings healing
The fruit of the tree brings life
Deceitful words crush

The lips of the wise
Spread knowledge and bring real hope
Pursue righteousness
You will find how loved you are
What delight in you God has

A cheerful heart celebrates
Sees the beauty, finds the hope
She cannot be defeated
Love’s at the center

A man of understanding
Listens with great compassion
Seeks counsel for direction
Then obeys the Lord

His path will be straight
Find joy in giving true words
A timely reply

Her path leads upward
He’ll climb every mountain
Joy will lead the way
Courage, wisdom and compassion
Death itself will be destroyed

The Lord listens to prayers
Those who seek with all their heart
Revere the Lord above all
Joy will fill your heart

Written in Jerusalem, April 16, 2012
How much better to get wisdom than gold, understanding rather than silver! Proverbs 16:16

Dedicated to my granddaughter Maia, on her ninth birthday

Look Ahead with Wonder

April 6, 2012

Help me trust with all my heart
O God, without wavering
For your love is my great truth
Test me, Lord, try me
Examine my heart, my mind
Your love ever before me
I will walk continually
Eyes fixed on your love
Place my feet on level ground
Let no one come between us
I want you to capture my heart
My soul and my mind
One thing I ask of the Lord
I seek it with all my heart
That I may dwell in your light
Your Living Presence
My father and my mother
They did the best that they could
They were broken as children
Not equipped to love
Our merciful God
Came to give relationships
That are rich and deep
A love that’s unshakable
A life that’s everlasting
My heart leaps for joy
As I remember your words
Meditate on your promise
I look back and see
I look ahead with wonder
Expect to see your glory
I’ll give thanks in song
Giving praise for what is true
Our God who lives in the NOW
A love that pursues
Our God gives us strength
A massive love beyond words
God became a man
Destroyed the power of death
Gave victory to us all
April 6, 2012.  Written in response to Psalm 26-30 and Proverbs 6.  We celebrated the Passover Seder in the home of Norma and Martin Sarvis, as we overlook Jerusalem.

Surprised by Joy

March 29, 2012

Take time to listen
There are words that bring you light
Jesus is calling
There is a fresh drink
Each morning that I arise
Go to the wellspring of joy
A relationship
Peace passing understanding
Hidden for you to find
Create space each day
On your knees and in the word
Go there and engage your mind
Be still and listen
You will be surprised by joy
In honor of Ty Osman II, who was full of joy. 
Ty joyfully served orphans.  You can continue his work.  Click here to learn more.

Listen Like Ty

March 15, 2012

Young Ty II listened
He drew near to the God he loved
Was still and silent
God spoke to him of the joy
Gave him a passion to share
Hear me, O God, when I cry;
Listen to my prayer.
You are the one I will call
When pushed to the edge,
When my heart is faint.
Shoulder me to the rock above.
You have heard the promises I made, O God.
You have laid on me the legacy due
To those who revere your name.
So I will never stop singing your praise;
As long as I live, I will fulfill my promise.
The Voice of Psalms – Psalm 61
In memory of Ty Osman II
The loss of Ty Osman II fills us with sorrow, but it comforts me to imagine Ty skydiving through the galaxies with his Father in heaven.

Ty skydiving

From Ty’s friend LaJuana Gill:

To observe Ty’s life was like watching a beautiful, brilliant shooting star.  He was in perpetual unfettered motion.  Even when standing still, his eyes sparkled.  His smile was so infectious that it drew you into his orbit.  At Coker Creek, it was such great fun to watch him connect with Adair or to play with Keller and Paden.  I loved how Ty worshiped with abandon.  He lived and worshiped full-out! 

I think you brought God glory, Ty.  Just know that you leave us wanting more – just like a beautiful, brilliant shooting star …


From Ty’s Dad:

Ty keeps comforting me from heaven with memories and even his words.  “God is here.  His presence is evident.  Take a look around you:  what do you see?”  Reading these words makes heaven seem a little closer.


From Ty:

It is hard for me to imagine trying to sincerely believe that this world and everything in it is all that there is …  There is no way that this just happened by chance.  A greater power, obvious to me, definitely had a hand in creating all of this.  One of the things I do not understand is how someone could believe differently.  To think that something as fragile yet as powerful and complicated as the brain was not crafted carefully by a higher power is crazy.  It does not make sense to me.  God is here.  His presence is evident.  Take a look around you:  what do you see?  All the way from the intricateness of a cell all the way to the expansiveness of the universe, He is obviously involved. 

“God is so good.” Ty Osman II
Click here to read Ty’s tweets – @TyOsman
This past Friday, I had the sad honor of speaking at the funeral of young Ty Osman. 
Four questions I addressed:
1. What would Ty want you to know?
“I never tasted death.  I moved from life to life.”

2. What would Ty want you to do?
“Remain aware that what matters most is a person.”
3. What would Ty want you to feel?
“Feel and believe that God passionately loves you.”
4. Who would Ty want you to be?
“Be someone who practices being in the presence of God.”
These are four moments that I shared in connection with each question:
1. The moment Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11).
2. The moment Jesus revealed he was aware of the sick woman (Mark 5).
3. The moment Jesus compassionately said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid, only believe!” (Mark 5:36)
4. The moment I sat with Ty at midnight and I listened to him share  his heart (July 13, 2011).  I told Ty that if I had five minutes to live, and could only tell him one thing, it would be this:  “Go into your room and close your door and pray to your Father, who is unseen …  Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”  — Jesus  (Matthew 6:6-8)

Here are three things Ty focused on each day:
 Kneeling to pray.
Reading the devotional book the Jesus Calling.
Listening to God by reading the Bible.
You are invited to develop these spiritual habits in your life. Many people have been inspired by Ty’s life and faith and are now adding Ty’s routine to their day. 
Ty Osman II leaves us a legacy of joy that he is living right now.
Our hearts are broken
Ty Osman our beloved
Has gone – left a gaping hole
Our grief overwhelms
How can you heal the pieces
Of our souls that are shattered

We don’t understand
Why his life was taken now
We are angry, sad and torn
Who gets the blame here
We thought you would protect him
Where were your angels this time

I did protect him
I gave him what he wanted
A life eternal
His purpose fulfilled
He has made my presence known

I knew him better than you
I loved him more than you did
I made him in my image
Just like I made you

I never promised
That  you would not see trouble
What I promised you is this
I’ll never leave you
Death cannot destroy your life
You believe in me, you will not die

He heard my calling
He listened to me as a son
Ty spent time with me

We would daily meet
He struggled with perfection
He thought he must be good
For me to call him my son
I met him in his weakness

He chose to believe what mattered most.

The memories that we have
Treasures that last forever
Living with moments of joy
The look in his eyes
The joy that he shared
With passion to serve others
A young life that saw
The vision of love for all
Compelled by friendship with God
                                      Ty Osman

Bill Frey – A Gift

March 4, 2012

A friend is a gift
He was always glad to see me
No expectations
No plans for my improvement
Rejoicing in our friendship
With light in his eyes
Giving joy and acceptance
Generous and kind
Special history
So many loved him dearly
A giver not a taker
A wise man who knows
What matters most in this life
The value of a person
I watched him live it
First Bunny, his beloved
Melissa, his child
His friends he made feel special
Those who worked with him honored
Compassionate and faithful
A true man who sought the best
Loved to laugh and take pleasure
All in his presence
I have some regrets
I did not avail myself
Of more moments of his friendship
But one thing I know
We both shared a deep bonding
That is eternal and real
One promise he knew
Death would not be the winner
Love was much greater
Defined by the Christ who died
Who rose victoriously
He was not afraid
Bunny was there to comfort
Missy held him close
A sacred moment for them
As in peace he breathed his last
This tender moment for them
Will always be in my mind
Bunny on his chest whispered
“I love you and it’s O.K.
You can let go and go home”
February twenty ninth
His dad, Carl, died on that day
He knew that this was the day
He was not afraid
We all hated this process
The angels were all around
Bill was covered with God’s love
Surrounded by his dear friends
Held close by his beloved
Angels attending
Terry S. Smith
March 1, 2012
The Psalms I was meditating on as I wrote these thoughts were: Psalm 4; 34; 91; 103; 119:50 and John 11.