The Apple on the Tree

it started with I want and
continued with I can

at first it seemed so simple
to choose to do something
I wanted to do

I have the freedom to do so

but when our spiritual vision
becomes blurred we cannot
see that every choice we

make ends in life or death

because all I could see was
what Satan wanted me to see
so beautiful so sweet that is

the apple on the tree

Return to Normal

I was sitting outback thinking about things. One of the things I thought about was the concept or yearning of humankind to have a strong desire to “return to normal.” That is when it hit me and I realized that to return to normal is not possible.

The hope that our lives or the world will return to normal is false hope and misplaced faith.

Ever since Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden, original sin made it impossible to return to normal—to be holy and walk with God.

Before Adam and Eve fell from grace and sinned, their relationship with Almighty God was the eternal standard for normal. Humankind created in the image of God was holy and walked with God, in other words, Adam and Eve were in constant fellowship with God which can only happen in the absence of sin because God is Holy. Holy is God’s character. Holy is who or what he is. So, that which is holy and sin cannot occupy the same space.

After Satan deceived Eve and her husband in the Garden of Eden, they sinned by not obeying God, but rather by believing Satan’s lie that they too could be like God, meaning they could be God if they ate from the tree of Good and Evil which God prohibited them to do.

From that point in time to the present day all humanity inherits the condition of sin and at birth is not holy and separated from God. The sin condition in humankind prohibits a relationship with God because God is without sin. Remember what I said? Here is an example. Remember Moses and the Burning Bush?

As Moses approached the Burning Bush that was not being consumed by the fire, he heard God’s voice. God told Moses to take of his sandals because he was standing on Holy Ground. The sandals represent all that is not holy, all that is man-made—that which is sin and cannot be one with God.

Ever since the Fall of Man, sin made it impossible for Adam and Eve to return to normal—to be Holy and walk with God—in a full close loving relationship with God.

A relationship with God is deeper and more personal than one can imagine. God (the Father), Jesus (the Son), and the Holy Spirit are described as God in three persons, the Trinity and all three of them were present in the Creation of the World. For all things were created by Him (Jesus) and for Him (Jesus).

You might say we are wired to seek God and a way to return to normal. God made humankind that way. The good news is that God (the Holy, Almighty one) planned to bring humankind back into relationship with himself after Satan (the Bad, the Evil one) deceived Adam and Eve.

The bad news is Satan. He is known as the Prince and Power of the Air and creates havoc on earth against God and against all who believe in God.

While God made a way for humankind to return to Him and be with Him forever (the eternal view), Satan has promoted a “return to normal” (his world view) in every generation to keep humankind in sin and separated from God which ends in death for humankind, not eternal life with God.

You see, with Satan’s world view, a “return to normal” is never a constant. Rather, Satan directs changes constantly, like shifting sand, to move the world and humanity in the direction he wants it to go, e.g., antichrist, to Hell, etc. These things are part of the “spiritual warfare” that the Apostle Paul spoke of late in the first century.

The Apostle Paul also explained simply how one might “return to normal” and walk with God by faith, as follows:

“The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead [after Jesus died on the cross for all sin], you will be saved [receive the gift of eternal life with God]. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew or Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:8-13 ESV; text in brackets here are mine.)

My hope for you, dear reader, and for all of humankind, as we move into the new year (with COVID so it seems) is this:

Do not hope to “return to normal” before COVID. It is impossible. There is true north and there is true normal. Return to normal by returning to God by saying the words of Paul above. Confess in the quiet of your own heart to God and you will return to normal and be with God for all eternity.

For those of us who believe in God, our return to normal is always in front of us not behind us.

God bless and Happy New Year.

Spiritual Issues

when a system is under
the law and not grace
the system is broken

when a system is broken
the people go around
the system and if that

system is the church
pray for the walking
wounded who long

to hear truth and not
error and long to be
free of political

doctrines that can never
solve spiritual issues

The Eyes Cannot

The path forward has disappeared
or so it seems. It is raining that hard.
And the trail that brought me here

is not the way back. Reason cannot
explain it. Intellect cannot understand it.
But Hurricane Delta will come and go.

Faith can see what the eyes cannot.

Faith keeps the fires of hope burning
when the cold hard truth is that
nothing will ever be the same again.

COVID came and is still here. And the
hurricanes have come one right after
the other. Both can destroy life.

We cannot see the end of COVID. Science
takes its best guess. A hurricane gust just
hit the house. Its end too is a best guess.

The eyes of hope still point to the
resurrection ahead. The meeting of the
dead and those living at Christ’s coming

in the clouds is well documented. When?
“Time unknown, but soon it will come,”
say the eyes of faith.

Don’t you see? The next COVID or the one
after that will not be for me. But the rain
will fall and the hurricane winds will blow.

But faith can see what the eyes cannot.

Shadows in Life

all things are forgotten
by humankind
by time
by design

except for the memories
of war
of abuse
of pain
of suffering

for they are our own
they made us who we are
maybe not who we thought
we wanted to be

and what of the other memories
of joy
of love
of peace
et cetera

they cast light on the shadows
in life with hope for the life
to come

just like the knowledge of God
cannot be listed as a memory

A Candle of Faith

I can’t be having the thoughts I’m having.
The thoughts of past abuse never go
completely away. I understand that.

Those thoughts spawn other thoughts.
And before I know it, I’m back in a place
I don’t want to be.

Pain and pleasure converge once again
and I’m in touch with the confusion of
the eight-year-old that was me.

It is Satan’s fuel fanning the fires of past
abuse freezing my thoughts for today.
Fiery arrows aimed at the heart to destroy

whatever is true. The breath of an angel is
all it takes to quench this Hell fire and
bring me back into God’s grace and truth.

Light and darkness can never occupy the
same space. All it takes is a candle of faith
to dispel the darkness.