Toothless Smiles & Bloody Handshakes

Pound for pound,

You can’t accurately predict an entire fight;

You need to take it round by round,

Whether you’re the fighter or observing.

Even when the battle is internal,

And often it seems most true in these times;

If you don’t want to fight anymore,

The fight doesn’t stop.

This fight,

And really any internal battle or fight is

NO SURRENDER

It’s not about giving in,

It’s about digging down and in.

Don’t reach the bottom and collapse;

Hit the floor, pick yourself up,

And build upon the cleared ruins.

Let the ruins be a reminder,

Not of defeat but of sacrifice.

Shut out the inner screams of failure,

But always remember that you within yourself are not the redeemer.

You are being redeemed,

But it will not be complete

If attempted in solitude.

Yes, you remove many complications in solitude;

But you also remove the possibility of help being offered.

The effort put in, often predicts what will be the end product.

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Beloved, Fear

The thumping in my chest,

Reminiscent of my favorite drummers double bass pedal kicks;

Joking suggestions & firm misunderstandings, like glue, stick.

Lethargically & confusingly working,

Wondering if I’m practically doing anything.

The possibility of my desire becoming reality,

The predetermined conclusion that to even suggest a thing is fallacy.

Fear, at times, is like the blanket your grandmother made for you;

It has sentimental value as an heirloom of simpler times & familial love,

But also is a reminder of sleepless nights from it’s allergy irritating materials.

No matter how much you itch and sneeze, you can’t let it go.

But I’m tired of sleep walking,

I’m done settling for comfort based on familiarity & not reality.

The war for tomorrow has started today.

I am awake and will fight,

But wounded & a bit unstable in mind.

Fear is fear, and that is all.

Fear is beloved, the biggest lie of all.

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Oh, November

November hasn’t ever really been a month to remember,

At least in my experience.

Yes, I do have memories from November in the past;

But they’re not exactly memories I treasure.

From burns to beatings and arguments galore,

It’s like the month of November is generally like what the floor of a department store must feel like after Black Friday.

Not to mention what it looks like;

Scuffed, bruised, littered, & disfigured.

But, this month is still important.

If anything November’s troubles,

Opens the door for December’s culmination & gratitude.

Rather than see this month as something to forget,

I will be grateful that my brain has retained even more reasons for me to be thankful for my existence.

For suffering, trouble, mistakes, & other experience aren’t just inconveniences to be numbed or forgotten quickly;

They’re sometimes our intangible teachers.

But, are we willing to learn?

Lluvia del Alma

My window clatters like teeth chattering in my head,

It’s a cool & lonely night in bed.

In the expanse of darkness,

In my rather small & dimly lit room,

Emptiness encroaches itself upon me;

But tonight,

Is not just any other night.

For it’s intrusion,

Is not accepted in any way.

Tonight,

Is the first night of who knows how many;

It’s the beginning of an end

That has needed to begin,

For quite some time.

Once thought to be impossible,

Recently thought improbable.

In need of calculation,

When in reality the calculating was the only complication.

For if the problem was seen,

The solution was all the more clear.

And so,

Change is in effect.

Needed in many ways,

But difficult in many more.

& that’s fine.

For I’m sick of the easy way,

And tired of numbing pain only for it to return.

I’m done with pacifiers,

And I’ve stopped swimming in denial.

This is only the beginning,

I definitely need help,

And so I must ask.

Stop being prideful,

Just ask.

Suffer well, Survive greatly.

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“Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties and abominable idolatries. In all this, they are surprised that you do not run with them into the same excesses of dissipation, and they malign you;  but they will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.”-1 Peter 4:1-5 NASB

Flickering Light

Sometimes the lights are on,

But no one is home.

Other times, and this is worse;

The doors are all unlocked

and the house is empty.

But then there’s those rare times,

When you have a group together but there is no light at all.

We all have lights to shine in this world,

Not just for others but even for ourself in any and all situations,

And unfortunately we are the only one in control of how our light shines.

We’ve been blessed with the ability to influence,

To share and give;

But if all we’re doing is influencing apathy,

Sharing darkness and taking everything we could never give

Where will that leave us?

Where will that leave humanity?

No matter what the world is looking like,

Or trying shove down your ears & throat;

Don’t let anyone cover or steal your light,

Remember that it is your alone.

And so, if you walk spreading darkness

Also remember you have no right to complain or lament of the dark world you in habit.

Because even if you don’t realize it,

You helped create the exact desolation that you want to escape.

You are the light.

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“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.16 Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 NASB

Beautiful Stains

As I walked up Jones,

Like I would most any other day;

I saw an unusual sight,

One more rapturing than ever thought possible.

I saw an elder homeless woman,

But I didn’t just see her hardship or poverty;

I saw a piece of who she was,

I saw her smiling from ear to ear

and it was as if the little girl she once was had returned momentarily.

Just as a phoenix blazes out to life from the ashes,

The light of her smile shown brightly from under her dirt crusted face.

No matter what may try to hide it,

The light will break though.

Remember while mistakes are obviously not good,

There can be good found in the reality of a mistake.

The fact is,

Mistake is unfortunately the only teacher we sometimes will listen to.

And so;

May we take our dirty spots and ruinous plains,

And see our beautiful stains.

The Wounded Healer

Sitting on a rug dirtier than my matted hair,

Ignored like a concrete statue that grew out of the sidewalk.

The man of sorrows came to me,

He came and washed me clean

and revealed that I can be seen!

But oh what I began to see,

All the stains and scars from this battle I’ve been in;

The battle of finding purpose and meaning,

There are no rules and no shortcuts in this contest.

I know I make it harder on myself than anyone ever could,

But it’s the only way I know how to live.

But after meeting me,

He didn’t leave.

He wanted to walk this path before me and with me,

Alongside me.

I’ve never really known anyone who truly goes shoulder to shoulder,

Usually at the first sign of complication; it was all over.

The firstborn of many,

The lover of all & any.

I keep on having to fight,

But I always know He’s in my corner.

Whether I’m bloodied, bruised, broken, or anything in between,

I know it’s his hands that have put me back together;

By Him I am whole,

And by His wounds we’re all healed.