Bunyan’s Cell

So much that I might do

But the tide has turned again

And the King’s ire is up-raised

And he’s seeking out God’s men.

And the Church is now his toy

And the Bishops do his will

Though the lordship of our Christ

Is a fact and power still.

And the cell a wee bit larger

Than the one I had last time

And the sleep in Christ’s approval

Brings restoring most sublime.

And the dream I had last night

Must become a volume true

Of the journey of one “Christian”

And the perils he passed through.

And the vision of the City

That would help him bear the shame

As he left the ways of custom

And the neighbours mocked his name.

And a wife would not go with him

As he heeded Matthew Ten.

But he prayed the God of Mercy

Would unite them once again.

Yes, a dream held all this power

And a River, glorious thought;

With a crossing, praising Jesus

For the Joyful Land He bought.

 

(Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON)

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The Wild Flock

 

It must be rough

Watching us

In the upward climb.

Heads butt

And feet stray

From the path

You know is best.

And I am in this bunch.

Hazards too many

Because of our stiff necks

And crazy inclinations.

Because of the mean weather

And the skulking wolf.

A friend passed yesterday

We bleated our misery

Missing a member.

Feeling our vulnerability.

But your rod, Sir

And your staff

They comfort me

In strange ways.

And with you

It is mostly sunshine

And that high, lush plateau*

Will be attained.

______________________________________________________________

(*Romans 8: 35-39)

Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON

Belonging

To have a friend
Who gently checks the pulse rate
And shuts his mouth
When I am prone to rant.
To see his smile
When all inside is ripped up
And know he means it
Even though I can’t.
To hear his word
And know it’s steeped in Christ
Hard come by
Transcending all the pain.
Yes, such a friend
One diamond full
Of scintillating comfort
Is priceless gain.

Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON

Losers …Losers All…

good samaritan

Anthony and I started this collaborative effort last September. We had come to know each other a little bit with our writings on another site. We didn’t always agree and we weren’t always civil with each other. Nope.

The thing started to pick up momentum right about the time AG had heart complications and major surgery. Take a well-travelled trucker, put him on his back with illness and see what transpires?

Christmas season found AG pretty much alone, as his mate Jody was compelled to go out of state to visit her Mother after a considerable gap in their getting together. No problem, Anthony got busy on the Web and our exchanges became very frequent. This is evident at http://twelfthmonth.wordpress.com/

The relationship became much richer for us as we learned of the healthy fare available to men who will simply drop the charade and get honest and transparent and supportive.

Now I find myself alone for a period as my wife Hilary undergoes psychiatric care. I have every confidence that treatment arrangements will improve and that all parties might learn from some shortcomings of the past, professionals included. Hilary will be home, and not too long from now. This is the fourth major episode in the last 13 years. Here in Waterloo the few men in my circle find it difficult to approach my “thrashings”.

I can remember visiting her at the dreadful time of 9/11 and the Twin Tower bombings. She was pretty much isolated from world events in an environment of confused, misunderstood and lonely people. Some proved to be honest-to-goodness caring friends of the time. As I related the phenomenal television images to her, I wondered where the “crazies” really were? On the outside? On the inside? Could I really believe my own eyes and ears as people jumped to their deaths before their fellow New Yorkers? As passengers made bold moves, unsuccessfully, for their freedom in the skies over Pennsylvania?

And this time in my passing perplexity, Anthony has been there for me. Selecting hope and encouragement; speaking and writing words of brotherly kindness and God-honouring submission. That is the service of real men. That is winning in ways never to be lost. And we are given in our pains a place of intercession, resembling in small ways the power and the comfort of the Man of Sorrows and Friend of Sinners. And a hurting world waits for some soothing balm.

Love you Bro’.

Twice

Could we live twice?
Once,
Stumbling and trembling
Stains on our knees, and mud on our fingers
and doubts looming like shadows,
over all too small dreams,
and then again,
free.

If I could live twice,
I’d
alter the stance and the breadth of my world,
replay all the scenes with the knowledge of now,
change all the fragments and shards of my life,

Except one,
the thing within me that chose you for a Friend.

(Poet Lynn Pearcey, Champion in a Wheelchair, Passed on March 29th and addressing joyfully the Reality)
https://sites.google.com/site/stuffthatrhymes/follow-me/blog/reality

John Four and a Thirsty Woman

Each noon for the water
When others were gone
And Jacob’s well good all these years.
Their gossip was hurtful
Could not get along
Alone I addressed all my fears.
The men had been many
Not all had been wed
To me, or to those gone before.
The present one helpful
Perhaps there was love
Provided I cooked, swept the floor.
But here sat a man
And waiting it seemed
And asking me for a cool drink.
And I of Samaria
And he quite the Jew
Oh what would the gossipers think?
He spoke of a water
That never ran dry
That tasted as fresh as the dew.
A strange living water
Relieving all thirst
As if all my past life He knew.
But no condemnation
Just hope in His eyes
And gentle words thrilling my soul
I must tell the others
Could this be the One?
Long pledged to make broken hearts whole?

Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON

Life Larger Than Fiction: Peden

Epitaph

In Memory of ALEXANDER PEDEN [ A native of Sorn ]

THAT FAITHFUL MINISTER OF CHRIST,WHO. FOR HIS UNFLINCHING ADHERENCE TO THE COVENANTED REFORMATION IN SCOTLAND,WAS EXPELLED BY TYRANT RULERS FROM HIS PARISH OF NEW LUCE,IMPRISONED FOR YEARS ON THE BASS ROCK BY HIS PERSECUTORS,AND HUNTED FOR HIS LIFE ON THE SURROUNDING MOUNTAINS AND MOORS, TILL HIS DEATH ON 26TH JANUARY 1686* IN THE 60TH YEAR OF HIS AGE, AND HERE AT LAST , HIS DUST REPOSES IN PEACE,AWAITING THE RESURRECTION OF THE JUST SUCH WERE THE MEN THESE HILLS WHO TRODE STRONG IN THE LOVE AND FEAR OF GOD DEFYING THROUGH THE LONG DARK HOUR, ALIKE THE CRAFT AND RAGE OF POWER.

ERECTED IN 1891.

http://justhappeneduponthis.wordpress.com/2014/02/15/ootcast-church/