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Posts Tagged ‘Phoenix’

P  Paul Wood Finch has turned the tassel,

          “Graduated” today.  

A  A long time ago he started this school

          Called Narrow Way.

U  Untold millions have done this course, of free will,

          not of force.         

L  Learning and loving to learn,

          growing in Christ every day.               

W  Would you believe in Jesus also,

          have Him as your Friend?                  

O  Our brother’s life imitate?

          He’s found a fabulous “end.”

O  Or let me say “beginning,”

          (only earth-life has ending).

D  Dead?  Oh, no.  Much more alive

          than those who condolence send.       

 

F  Father of five, yet spiritually,

          many more are alive

I  In Ireland, Africa, and home,

          he has descendants dear.

N  No allowance Finch would make,

          for old carnality’s sake.

C  Clean hands and a pure heart

          are available “now and here.”

H  Holiness lead Finch to heaven. 

          Oh, follow in his wake!  -eab, 7/8/03

Penned in Phoenix, AZ, the day I heard of his death.

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If you could create your own Jesus,

To suit your political taste,

You might have Him born “like a king,”

And not in a manger, near waste.

 

You might have His step-dad a merchant,

Perhaps owning part of the bank,

So Jesus could have lots of funds,

And thus dress a little more swank.

 

You might change the scene at the temple,

(At twelve He confounded the docs.)

Pretend that He birds made on wing,

By merrily tossing up rocks.

 

You might have Him coddling the preachers,

Intent on their legalist brew,

(But He called them hypocrites – Wow,

No wonder they “bit nails in two.”)                   

 

Your special “new Jesus,” your dream one,

Might skip all Golgotha’s cold loss, 

He’d be a warm “pattern,” and teach,

Avoiding the grave and the cross.

 

A Christ so political saves none.

All sinners would die in their sin.

Thank God for His Son, who is real,

Not something created by men.

 

The real Christ died once for all sinners,

Arose He then, Victor, not dead.

He’s coming again, now to rule.

It’s just like they* said that He said.

                      ~  o  ~

Amen and Amen, once again!  – eab, 12/12/‘03

Written while in Phoenix, Arizona


*  The Bible writers

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Samsonite, American Tourister

Or Jordache is the name,

Bought new or “one-owner” or yard sale;

It’s all the same.

Cause, just like mortals on this earth,

Where we’re headed decides our worth.

And I’ve value above my “race”;

I’m a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’m a soft-sided navy

Or a color that used to be white,

Or I’m brown or gray with scars

That make me a grand sight.

The outside color doesn’t count,

I carry wealth beyond amount.

Who cares for a pretty face,

When you’re a missionary’s suitcase?

 

I’ve started out from Kansas City,

Phoenix [1] or Kalamazoo,

Left from ranches near Helena,

South of Denver too.

Parted from parents in New York,[2]

And at stations on the “South Fork.”

The privilege soon outweighs the place.

I’m a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’ve been transported by mules

In South American mountain heights,

Packed in the bowels of a boat

Without windows or lights,

Been slid high overhead on trains.

And been stacked seven-deep in planes.

What a way to go!  What a chase,

For a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’ve become a seat

Beside yon Africa’s dusty, lonesome trails;

Been a pillow to men

And women in foreign jails.

I’ve served as altar for a “bunch,”

And when its time for a quick lunch,

Over me they said their Grace,

Over a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’ve carried the clothes of a bashful bride

With all that they could yield.

And packed home the patched,

The frayed suits from India’s field.

Out went pretty new gowns and shirts;

Home came thin pants and ragged skirts.

I couldn’t always pack pink lace;

I’m a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’ve been carried out with the quickness

Of a youthful, holy pride.

And returned with a slower,

Wiser, more humble stride.

Time and again I’ve made the rounds;

Same airports, same roads, same old towns,

Back to the one familiar base;

I’m a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’ve been cleaned and packed and shipped,

Amid happy voices and bright smiles;

A daughter’s wedding waited

At the end of my miles.

I’ve also felt those hot full tears,

As a parent ended his years.

It was all a part of my pace,

As a missionary’s suitcase.

 

I’ve ─ but wait, all good things must have an end,

Soon, so soon I will be

Carrying their things one final time

Across the sea.

Missionaries will leave behind,

Trunks and barrels of every kind.

Up that Golden Staircase,

They will never need another suitcase.

– eab, 11/1991


[1] Only God knew in ’91 that Phillip and Heather would leave Phoenix for missions.  He is so wise and good!

[2] And – only the Lord knew that Daryl and Laura would go to their second mission field from NYC.  Oh, His knowledge.

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The body with which God endowed you,

Is really just so much neat meat.

Eyes and ears and elbows have value,

Each performing an elite feat.

But don’t worship this small temple of yours,

Because you, your neighbor in a “heat,” beat.  -eab,  1/23/03

 

Written at Gospel Center, Phoenix, Arizona

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About

Edgar A. Bryan (name of blogger) has pastored holiness churches in US and Canada, been Associate Professor at one Bible College and taught in others (both at home and abroad), has written Matthew – Titles, Notes, and Questions (’06), A Study in Christian Beliefs (’07), Zechariah – Titles, Notes, and Questions (’08) and has a book at the printers.  He is the husband of one good wife, the father of four great children, the father-n-law of four more nice children, and “Gramp” to sixteen GRANDchildern.  Edgar has enjoyed gardening, deer and sheep hunting, has hiked the Smoky Mt. section of the AT, most of the many trail miles of South Mt. (Phoenix) and driven in 49 states.  He has written hundreds of rhymes and several songs.  He currently is pastor and Bible teacher at Union Friends Church.  

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