Are You Awake (“Safe Haven”, Writing On the Wall)

(So this poem is actually coming out a day early. This is the poem that will be featured in the TOR Ministries Safe Haven newsletter, but after writing it yesterday I felt compelled to share it…so here you are!)

Are You Awake

Are you awake?
Are you still asleep?
God’s been knocking on your window sill
For quite some time now
Don’t fall asleep!
You have to stay awake!

You have to stay awake
For your soul’s sake…

I made a mistake today
I laid my head on the pillow
Because I figured it’d be alright
If I simply skimmed over the page

I owe You an honest, sincere apology

But I have yet to give it
Because I think my good deeds
And teacher’s pet behavior
Has saved me
Forgetting to remember
That it was my very flesh
That failed me
That my constant desire to sin
Is why Jesus came
To take a place on the cross
That I really should’ve taken myself

It had my name on it

Instead
He paid it all off
So I could have the option
Of having a reservation
In the Lamb’s Book

I remember when I walked
Outside of His will
And I thought to myself
I don’t need God
I don’t need that Jesus stuff
I’m a good person

But by whose standards?
Not God’s, that’s for sure
I was the captain of my own ship
Call me a devil worshipper
I followed the motto
Do what thou wilt

Til I found that
Doing what thou wilt
Leaves you might empty
Emptier than a tank
Running on fumes
And the car stops
But you’re days away
From the nearest gas station

Colder than cold
Even colder than when
You’re freezing
And you go to light the fire
But a wind comes by
And blows out the last match
That you had in your pack

I was on my last match and that match went out
I was an empty tank and nothing could fill me

Except Jesus
Who ignited a flame I had never experienced
Filled my cup to the brim
Yup–it was running over

Then I became a Christian
I read somewhere
That when you turn it from a noun
Into an adjective
That the word Christian loses power

Well somewhere along the way it became an adjective
A simple characteristic but not something to live out

And now I’m sitting here
Shaking my head at myself
Because I went from thinking
“I’m a good person, I don’t do anything wrong,”
To
“I’m a good Christian, I know I’ll live long.”

My salvation and my righteousness
Have suddenly become defined
By what all I do
And what all I don’t
And all that I do is good enough
And what’s good enough for me
I figure is good enough for You

Again there’s a saying
That good is the enemy of great
When you settle for good
And you know you could do better
YOU KNOW that you know
That you could do better
And settle for good anyway
You are really settling for okay

God designed you to be great
But you decide to strive for average
Or in my case
Below that
Way, way below that
Because it’s back to that old mind
That old way of thinking

That one that says
I rather be average
I rather be lower
Because to be great
Means I’d HAVE to do better
And that requires consistency
So
What if I fall off?
What if I lose the streak?

I find myself fine with pretending
I’ll just make like I’m the greatest
When in reality
I’m walking beneath my role
My calling
To the natural eye I come off as
Well put together
Though I already know
In His eyes I can’t hide anything

I can’t cover this up
Doctor it up
Smother it with words
Fluff it up with a fancy show

God says girl your heart is black
Grace isn’t earned
It’s given
Because to earn it is to deserve it
And you certainly didn’t do
Either one of those

The things the devil says
Just sounds so sweet
I really bought into it for a moment
That I was doing okay
Was just fine
That just fine
Was okay

That my good deeds got me in
That I was safe
How sad would that have been
If I had slid into home plate
Only to find
That I was out
A LONG time ago

Because instead of running I decided to take a stroll
Thinking my ‘great’ stats and ho-hum dallying

Was good enough to win a runner’s race

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One thought on “Are You Awake (“Safe Haven”, Writing On the Wall)

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