Cleaning Out the Attic IX

(I wrote this poem officially two years ago now on New Year’s Day. It seems only fitting to share it. One day I may perform it, only time will tell, but for now it’s here for everyone to read.)

HAPPY NEW YEAR

Happy New Year
Mazel tov
Somebody’s poppin’ bottles
And pourin’ it up

Me
I’m doing what I always do

I write

Writing
Is what I will always do
But to allow another year
Of the same old
Tired
Burned out
Tried and true traditions
Are as played out
As the debates of real religion
Themselves

“I am of Paul,”
“I am of Apollos,”
Um…
Hi
I just want to write poetry and tell
–people about Jesus

We don’t come in the name
Of pastors
Churches
Or denominations
And yes,
Contrary to what its name suggests
Non-denominational
IS a denomination
It’s just a denomination of
–non-denomination
So
Sorry but
We only come in the name
Of One
The name above all names
And His name
Is Jesus Christ

So let’s stop telling folks,
“Nah, nah, nah!
You gotta come over here
Cuz over here we got it right!”
No you didn’t—COGIC included
Because if you did
God would not have had to send His
–Son down
So sit down if you’re professing
Pastors
Or denominations
But leaving the Son out

Nowhere did you hear Jesus say,
“Now thus saith the Father
The…” fill in the blank “church
Has got it down pack.
So you better be with them
Before I come back!”

People don’t need
Christianity
And the plethora
Of all those other subcategories

I mean seriously…there’s a lot under
–Christianity
Have you looked at it?
I mean, wow!

And while having fellowship and a church
–home
Are of the greatest importance
A denomination
Does me no good
If I fail to realize
What I’m even doing it for

There was a time
When I didn’t know what I was doing
–it for,
Or rather,
WHO I was doing it for
I didn’t come to church
Expecting something from the Lord
Or to leave with something
From the message
Given to be me by the messenger on
–that day

I just showed up
Because that’s what you do when you
–claim a faith
You show up
You don’t let God resonate
You sit there,
Clap your hands
(Unless you’re off beat)
Get a little happy
Start singing along
(Unless you’re off-key)
>>>>Ooo…did my voice just crack?
>>>>Guess I’ll be clappin’ and noddin’ today!
Leave

And then what?
Glance over the notes I took
But never applied to my life?
Write em up in the church newsletter
Thinking of elegant,
>>>>>>>>>>Witty,
Charming things to say
As I say, “Man I make this
Look SOOOO good!”

I think you get my drift but I’ll go
–further

When you just claim something
You read,
You study,
You may even be able to quote
–scriptures
But you don’t actually see it all
As spending alone time
With God
You just do it
Because you have to
When you say you’re a believer

I didn’t live out any of that stuff, either
None of it
I went through my little checklist
Of “Godly Things To Do Today”
Study the Word
Check
Thank God for the Word
Check
And double check
Remember to pray…eh…
That can wait til later
Post up a spiritual status
Send out a few inspirational tweets…

Alright now that, that’s over with…

I did all those things
Because I said I was a believer
And that’s what believers
Have to do
You have to

Only for God to remind me
That I don’t have to do
Anything
I have a choice
And if my choice is
I choose to do this
Because I have to
But not because it’s in me
To learn of Him,
Take Him in,
Find new things about this God—
The God I say I love
Then all I’m really doing
Is putting up a front
I’m just playing make-believe saint

“Cuz that’s just pretendin’…”

And some of yall are still tryin’ to
–play that game
With the God who sees everything
Including the dark nature of your heart
Who reaches down
And through His Word
Reads to your innermost parts
The stuff that YOU don’t even like
–to know about you

But as God told me,
“I’m not trying to put you down
Or make you feel bad about
–yourself;
I’m trying to help.
I can help, if you let Me.”

If we say we’re in a relationship with
–God
Then honesty is key
I finally stopped lying to myself
And just came clean
(Because God already knew)

“God,
I’ve been going on
All this time
And have never taken the time
To grow in You
I just accepted You into my life
Because
I thought that would be enough,
But it’s not.
So where do we go from here?
Should we just part ways?
The devil whispers that my heart wasn’t
–in this
To begin with
And he’s right…
So maybe,
Maybe we should just go ahead
And say our goodbyes.
I don’t mean to leave You forever;
I’m just saying that perhaps
We should keep it cordial.
I’ll keep going to church
And bible study,
And studying Your Word.

I just won’t pursue an actual relationship
–with You.
I mean, that sounds pretty cool.
I could work with that.
How about You, Lord?”

In any other scenario
When someone tells you
Something like:
I remember how beautiful it was
When we first got together
I told you I wanted to spend the rest
–of my life with you
So in love with you
But…
Now that I think about it
I’m not so sure
It doesn’t seem as beautiful
Not quite like before
To be frank about it
I’m not certain if I even truly
LOVED you
I mean,
I like you—don’t get me wrong
You’re nice and all
It’s just…
I don’t think I see a real future in
–this
Or even
If I really want to have a future with
–you
There’s no desire in me to even try

Normally
Under those circumstances
There’s no way I would stay
In a relationship with some guy
Who practically just gave me my
–walking papers
Right after acknowledging
That I was wasting all my time
And affection on him
Because he didn’t really love me
From the start
Breaking my heart
By telling me he was just
Stringing me along
I know that if it was me,
I would’ve walked away

But not the Great I Am
Because He chose to stay
Drew me near,
Embraced me in His arms
And said,
“I love you
And I love you too much
To let you walk out on Me now.

Now you see
What I already saw:
You were just going through the motions.
But now that you have realized this
We can begin to start anew.
My love,
You see an end but I see
A whole new beginning.
Relationships are tough;
Each has been and will be
Put to the test,
Yet I assure you,
You won’t find another love like Mine.
There’ll never be another kind of
–love
Like this one we’ve got.

I wanna bring out the best in you,
Erase all the negative things
People ever vested in you,
Take away those labels they gave to
–you—
Even now,
You think you are incapable
Of love.
You think it’s impossible
For you to love something
Or someone
Including Me,
But I love you
So just hold on because My love
–is all you need!
I love you girl!
I have loved you before you were
–thought of
By your mother and father.
I love you.
So don’t walk away from Me
When I still have so much more love
To give you.”

That kind of thing
It scared me

It still does, actually

Because He loves me
God genuinely loves me
No matter what
And He means that
Patiently
He will wait for me to say,
“God, I’m ready.
I’m finally ready to be loved.”

And love,
What a thing it is

For so long
I confused it with lust
And sex
Often times
I still do
But now He’s showing me
What love is
And what He meant
When He said that He is love
Cuz when the fires of passion
Simmer down
And you’re a woman like me
Waiting for the ring and wedding
–gown
You’ll discover
The difference between the two
Lust is nothing like love
Not at all
It’s nothing like this
I can’t speak on it
But I’m pretty sure
For those who have had sex
Found it to be true
That none can satisfy
Like the love of God can
Like the love of God DOES

And Jesus never had to sweet talk me
“Hey baby, what’s up wit yo fine self?”
Never had to caress me
Try and shower me with expensive gifts
Or any of that nonsense you see done
–in romantic flicks
He just

Was there for me
God listened
Encouraged me
Corrected me when I was wrong
Guided me
Picked me up after my falls
Held me down
When no one else would
Caused me to smile
Turned my tears into rain
That caused wells of life
To spring up out of nowhere
With poems, songs and short stories
–brewing
Straight out of the Jordan stream

He helped me see how beautiful
–I am
After almost 24 years of thinking
I was hideous and grotesque
All I could see was a hot mess
And now
Slowly
When I look into the mirror
I’m starting to see His Son
God is helping me to find
The Proverbs woman He spoke of
Nestled down inside

And I bet
You never saw this coming

Well get ready
Because this year
It’s going to be a fun ride
Nothing about my God
Is boring

And if it is to you…
Well,
Then you ain’t livin’ it right

Yeah
I said it
You
Not
Livin’ it
Right
BOO

So get it right

And start living this thing out
One scripture at a time

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