I'm back!! :)  My small cohort of readers will have noticed how my blogging dipped right off last year.  It was a crazy year that went like a blur due to home renovations and the whole 'adjusting and settling back home in Australia' thing.  Now that the dust has settled both physically and metaphorically speaking, I am seeing clearer and feeling ready to take on this new year.  I have a sense of anticipation as I not only undertake study at Uni but also as I dare to believe that God has a plan for yes, even me, back here in Aus.  

I want to share a few poetic thoughts with you with the hope that they will stir something in you for the new year and maybe give you a little inspiration as they have for me, to dare to believe..

What if?

What if I dared to believe?
What if I dared to really live?
What if I chose to take God at His word
and let His Spirit free in me?

What if I chose to refute and rebuke
Those voices in my head;
The insults and accusations 
That keep me locked in fear and dread?

The voices that remind me
of my weakness and where I fall;
that mock and taunt relentlessly 
“You’re alone after all”

What if I saw through the lies
and believed He can use even me?
Embracing God’s beautiful truth
That He gives purpose and destiny.

With all my limitations
and though I’m feeling weak
If His Holy Spirit is unleashed in me
Could I truly be free?

Could I touch the world like Jesus did?
Could I know His strength in me?
If I opened my heart fully to Him;
and gave Him liberty?

If I cast aside all doubt and fear
and embrace His plans for me,
What would He do?
How would He work?

If I dared to believe....

A wink, a smile, a tender touch.
A mother’s look that says so much.
A beckoning wave, the silent call;
A look between lovers requiring no words at all.

A tightened fist or a tender embrace,
The gentle caress of a baby’s face.
The elderly couple walking hand in hand,
It’s the unspoken language we all understand.

The sideways glance or dad’s head to toe:
That interrogative look that all girls know.
The gestures that cross every culture and creed,
As ancient as time and powerful indeed.

Friend or stranger, whoever it be,
It’s a sentiment expressed silently.
A hand on the shoulder at the grave side
Or a fathers’s tender expression of pride.

Where joy or pain is deeply heard -
Action speaks louder than word. 

1 John 3:18

Dear children, let us not love merely with words or in speech but with actions and in truth.
Poetry and music are such a gift.  I love the way it communicates from the heart and expresses real human emotion that, while unique to the individual, is also common to humankind.   That is why I love the Psalms so much.  The Psalmists shared with us the heights and depths of what it means to know, love and experience God in every day life.  We may not experience the same circumstances or trials that they did but we relate to their cries of the heart as they give voice to what our own hearts feel.  The following reflection is my own adaption of Psalm 127.. 

Watching You, Watching me

When I am alone, afraid and downcast
Where can I go for help?
Where can I run for protection;
to be known, loved, accepted?

I raise my eyes to the heavens;
To my Creator, the Maker of heaven and earth.
I look to the Lord, my Forever;
To the One who never sleeps 
and whose eyes are looking at me.

You are my Shelter;
The Protector of my life.
I will not be afraid 
for I am watching you, 
and you're watching me.




She was guilty and condemned
Left abandoned without a friend
Her sin exposed for all to see
Used and abused but where was he?
The crowd pressed in took up their stones
She stood fearful and alone
With no voice for her defense
She was to die for her offence.

Then Jesus stood before the crowd
And spoke out strong and loud
"Let he who has no sin cast the first stone"
The crowd was silenced and ashamed
The 'unclean' woman they had named
Was no more guilty than their own self righteous hearts.

The stones fell to the ground
As she stood and looked around
The accusing crowd moved silently away
Jesus looked into her eyes
Seeing through her vain disguise
To a heart in need of rescue
To show her what is true...

And He saw She.

She is loved, she is forgiven
She is purposeful and driven
She is light , she is colour
She is rock and she is fire
She is nourished and inspired
Full of longing and desire
She is active, she is brave
A voice for justice, the lost to save
She is beautiful, She is free
She is worthy, She is me.

Trish Bartell
Inspired by Elissa Macpherson
She Conference Cairns June 2010