burdens lifted

October 13, 2010

How can God speak
If we are not listening
Stop the noise and hear
He brought thousands through
A painful great wilderness
He fed, clothed, and sheltered them
Disciplined and loved
Remember and consider
His faithfulness and mercy
There is more to the story
More information for you
More love than you can fathom
A living presence
He sets the lonely
In the family they need
He does the choosing
He leads the prisoners in song
He demonstrates that love
Find a good place of silence
Get alone and stop the noise
You comfort the wounded child
Take him/her to Jesus
For forty-nine years
Have I chosen to seek Him
The Spirit, my counselor
My friend and my guide
Have never let go of me
I felt discipline and love
It’s painful when I look back
To see how blind that I was
He carried me through the darkness
Abandoned; afraid
Today I sit in wonder
Focused and hungry to know
I choose to listen to God
Not the wounded child
My faith is in Him
The One who spoke and acted
With undying love
He daily bears my burden
A promise that I have seen
This promise has restored me 
“I’ll never leave you”
Depressed and oppressed
He comes in loving kindness
To lift the burden
My peace I will give to you
If you will only receive
© Terry S. Smith
October 13, 2010
Meditations written after reflecting on Psalms 68; John 15; Colossians 3 and Matthew 11:28-30.
Dedicated to Rick and Terry Healy

a place of peace

September 20, 2010


You will feel better

When you choose a cheerful heart

It’s good medicine


Circumstances will rob you

If you let them control you

Others make expectations

You must meet their needs


How absurd is this

To make you responsible

To meet all their needs


If you cover an offense

You promote genuine love

If the matter’s repeated

Separation comes


A person of knowledge

Will measure words carefully

Stay even tempered

Understanding will guide you 

A loving presence brings life


I will hold my tongue

Pay attention to others

Listen carefully

I am choosing to respond

To love when misunderstood


I will not react

This is the way of a fool

A way I have lived


There’s a place of peace

That passes understanding

That’s bigger than death


Christ has arisen

He offers each one his peace

Forgiveness and love


Do not be afraid

There is no reason for fear

You’re beloved by God


© Terry S. Smith

September 17, 2010

Meditations written after reading Proverbs 17 and John 15.

Indescribable peace

July 6, 2010


I will help others

The way I was helped

My strength was wasted

Resulting in my “burn out”

I could not save my own life


A love much larger than me

Intervened and came seeking

Indescribable peace

Anointed me with joy

© Terry S. Smith
July 2, 2010

a place of peace

May 4, 2010

The rain keeps coming
My basement filled with water
Many things destroyed
I write from a place of peace
There is a storm raging outside
The one that is within is calm
A storm calmed by love
I’ve learned to be still
A training I’ve developed
In quiet, love speaks
Each person must stand alone
In their quest to find this peace
We can’t depend on others
For what we must do
Healthy connection
Comes when we honestly search
And face the dark side
The part of us we don’t like
Transform the dark with the light
Peace has many benefits
The spontaneous laughter
The ability to weep
Yes, feel your feelings
©Terry S. Smith
May 2, 2010
written during the Nashville flood


February 4, 2010

Where can I find the knowledge
To live a life that is full
The answers are not easy
I need real wisdom

What are my questions
They are formed in quietness
I listen for them

Nature speaks to me
The birds, trees and animals
Speak of higher love
This knowledge makes me bow down
I am in awe of this world

Nature has order
It is not so with mankind
What is the problem
A basic question answered
This one I have studied well

Discipline and honesty
I have sought to know what’s true
My responsibility
To search and find where is peace
I have been surprised by joy

Jesus Christ has made God known
Compassion and gentleness
To the broken and lonely
His love was revealed

The truth just tastes good
When you hear it you know it
It has a clear ring

It meets all the tests
Bigger than circumstances
Much larger than death
It must be worth dying for
The ones important to me

My standard is high
This truth will enhance each life
It guarantees  growth
Knowledge is what I’m seeking
About personality
Jesus became my focus
I studied his life
© Terry S. Smith
February 1, 2010
Today is my daughter Sara’s birthday.  You are invited to read funny things that my grandchildren say on her blog.
“A Spacious Place”

A deep peace

January 30, 2010

My ears attentive
To the sounds that bring hope
A sweet voice of love
Light in the darkness
A candlelight of real joy
Given to seekers
High above circumstances
A genuine place to rest
I’ll never give up
Seeking to bring hope to all
Who are desperate and lost 
Tangled in the mess
In the human life struggle
Longing to find a deep peace
That deep peace is here
Available for us all
Who want to know truth
Truth is found in history
We can all learn from others
We can follow the journey
Of over-comers
Wisdom is in the story
Listen closely to their words
Do not be too quick to judge
Read them in context
I’ll not live in fear
In this day I will find joy
That found me searching
© Terry S. Smith
January 28, 2010

Be still

January 8, 2010

We all need a hiding place
To be quiet and be still
Where safety is all around
And you hear a song
The song is a song of hope
Of deliverance and peace
My soul leaps for joy
My heart overflows
A different beat
Rooted in the joy of love
That’s larger than life
Why can’t I hear it
The distractions are many
The voices are just too loud
I’ll learn to be still
I will train to listen well
I will choose the voice of truth
The snare comes in pleasing men
Giving others the power
Expecting them to give me
The life that I want
I’ll not live in deception
I’ll not live my parent’s way
They lost their relationship
And we all suffered
It’s never too late
To start all over again
You are forgiven
Terry S. Smith
January 7, 2010


December 17, 2009

Christmas season brings the lights
Lighting it up with hope, joy
Looking to give and receive
The Light of the world
Light within is the answer
Many walk in dark places
Confused and afraid of the night
Because they can’t see
There is a presence
Given to all who believe
A love without end
Where can I find peace?
The most important question
Asked when I was young
Wisdom is what I needed
Insight to find a new way
A longing for what is true
A way to find peace
© Terry S. Smith
December 16, 2008

real peace & real joy

October 23, 2009


Look at your expectations

Of yourself and of others

Look at someone whose healthy

Who lives in real joy


You find at the center

Love, and respect for oneself

A way to deal with failure

Your own and also others


The question I have

How do I help a person 

See that they are loved


How do I live in real peace

With those who are close to me

I discovered forgiveness

A personal quest


© Terry S. Smith

written October 23, 2009


a treasure

August 20, 2009

When I consider my story
Looking back at the choices
There is one that changed my life
I looked for real love
Yes, I found it real
A love that welcomed me in
We shared a deep common ground
The soil of our souls was joy
A treasure we both had found
A rich higher love
We now have years behind us
To give away to others
We are learning to follow
Freedom, joy and peace
It’s available to all
No one is excluded here
All it takes is one person
Listening for love
written February 14, 2009

real joy

August 15, 2009

I do know real joy
Along the way I have found it
My greatest treasure
Drink deeply from this great joy
Practice its presence daily
What pleasure it is to wake
To joy in the morning hour (early dawn)
A joy much larger than pain
A love beyond words
Laughter is a good life sign
Good cheer the right medicine
For those we meet on the way
Lightness brings the light
I find great freedom
In living for just one thing
A joy to be told
I know it is a mystery
Ask someone who lives it well
written spring 2009

The Story

July 21, 2009


I look with wonder

At the story I live in

Looking back I see the pain

That I grew up in

I found a “larger story”

Of flawed and broken people


I found hope in their stories

I saw them living in grief

I saw their flawed lives arise

And find a deep peace


Is there hope for me

I said in my deep despair

I found in me a longing

To know what is true

So I studied a story

The one much larger than me


Focus and discipline worked

As I narrowed where I’d look

To find someone to address

Real issues of life


The story I discovered

Is hidden in sacred books

I found sixty-six of them

Books of the Bible


I just had one big question

If there is a God, “Who is he?”

I will let the writers speak

Each one their own way

They were consistent

One theme always held the sway

A persistent joy


One problem that I’m seeing

So many are distracted

Not looking for what is true

But trying to please


And when life stopped me

I decided I would look

At a story much larger

Big enough to learn

There is hope in our failure 


The Bible when used

By many as a “rule book”

Will wreck a man’s soul


I want to know the story

Told by the ones who lived it

I found a larger story 

That connects with mine


The connection a surprise

With integrity I searched

Looking for some good answers

I felt I could trust


written June 27, 2009

Inspired by article about Barbara Brown Taylor (in The Tennessean on June 27, 2009). 


July 11, 2009

Henri J.M. Nouwen is one of my favorite authors.
A poem from his book With Open Hands.
Hope means to keep living
Amid desperation
And to keep humming in the darkness.
Hope is knowing that there is love,
It is trust in tomorrow
It is falling asleep
And awaking again when the sun rises.
In the midst of a gale at sea,
It is to discover land.
In the eyes of another
It is to see that you are understood…
As long as there is hope
There will also be prayer…
And you will be held
In God’s hands.
from With Open Hands, Henri J. M. Nouwen

pursue a life of love

July 7, 2009

Though it may cost you all you have
Seek understanding with passion
Make it a first priority
Insight will follow
Understanding links the past
With the present circumstance
Solitude will help you make
Future connections
We have just one life to live
I’ve decided to live well
Joy will be at my center
Peace will be at my goal
Pursue a life of love
Asses where you are
Be gentle in the process
written November 1, 2008

With power and love

June 26, 2009

A friend called me and asked how I was doing.  I responded,  “I am in perfect peace, in a perfect storm.”  Later in the evening, I wrote this poem as a reflection of my day.


The storm is raging

The Prince of Peace calls us near

He speaks to the storm


I’ll give attention

To one who calms the storm

With power and love


He spoke with authority

And the sea that was raging

Became still and quieted

A sight to behold


The fear in the storm

Came from inside my being

The storm wasn’t the open sea

But my broken heart


The grief was overwhelming

Pain I had no language for

All of my dreams were shattered

Peace is what I needed

written June 23, 2009

To read a story, about the Prince of Peace calming a storm,

click here.