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The Hoped For

(After thinking about Genesis 1:1-8.    It took years for me to bow to the reality that God's revelation trumps man's theology) So the waters are separated from the waters? Then, even if I flew like an eagle, I’d still need a cosmic, greater than Wholly Other* to help me ascend beyond earth’s last layer. So, as I fly, trusting in my Father, by grace though skies, where mercy tops legal, the apostolic air will meet another and trust give way to what is hoped for. __________

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Trinity

...written after considering Colossians 2:9-12 The renewed Spirit of the follower of Christ comes to intuitively understand the teaching of the Trinity by the threefold way in which God functions in the universe and also toward the believer. Intellectually, another story. It is a plain teaching and yet a full mystery--God to be glorified, even though not fully grasped. He has nevertheless given light to the Church to know a mystery hidden from ages past. Abba, fullness of the G

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Peter Joins Jesus

After reading about Jesus calling Peter (Simon) from the nets, to follow him, Mark 1:14-18   I just threw down the net in a celebratory way, like when the fishing season is over. I doubt I’ll regret, “catching men” has full sway, the net shifting toward something much bolder. Men have to be caught, I believe it, I catch them swindling and lying and cheating. Does this mean life is for naught, without promise? Off with the Greek stoic, I am traveling! This rabb

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Accepted

I am trusting in the Almighty, though having been so many times, a prodigal, trying to make music a madrigal to cover over the pain of estrangement from my earthly father, whom I barely knew, my confused arms stretching toward him from an adult cradle, without knowing I wanted to be blessed in my mental crib. One day I walked away from the furniture, and I wondered if Dad would be at the next corner. Hardly all his fault, hardly none of my own, fallen nature's conscience ca

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Lifting Dust

The branches do not sway so much as my gratitude which flutters, the glistening brooks as much eclipsed by love’s silver lining from my Father. The cooling summer nights bow low to refreshing Spirit’s shower; clouds gathering against August heat show faith shielding from the Darter.* The winding road up mountains tells hearts to value steps; though compass points direction, devotion hikes ahead. Rain which slows such travel slackens not to make amends, but time is

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Words

Lord, keep my stray words away from the rudder, when these pile on a storm, cause me to stutter, falter, better yet go mute. Capture my mouth, add me to Ananias’s crew.+   Wrong words are like doubt looking for some other builder to sanction bad bricks to build up an altar of self-declaration apart from good’s grace. Why should we bother to speak, when it’s only gravel shoveled into creative space?   Lord, I believe that You are

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Faith Traction

Sometimes I can’t seem to get beyond the abrasive things that I feel, when the living in my life come with their pain, and instead of a bandage I offer them shame.   Soul, leave your fortress you have God’s armor to suffer. Before battle commences get to your knees and admit you, too, have pain and need consolation, so confess then get up and breathe out Christ’s righteousness.   This true religion of God in our needs, does not end

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

How Glorious

Of Thine own heart, we partake Of what You shed and said and gave,* Blood for our sin, life b'yond grave, Holy is the Lamb once slain! Of Thy riches, poorer we of ourselves, yet wealthier be by Jesus' justice, joy and peace,** Such Inheritance is He! How glorious?, worlds might well ask, Is the hope on which we rest? Christ, the full measure thereof, Infinitely glorious! __________ * See 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 and John 6:25-59 ** Romans 14:17 (KJV) reads, For the king

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

The Goodness of God

I wrote the below after reading this, about God’s goodness and our repentance as a response to Him: https://www.allaboutgod.com/the-goodness-of-god-leads-to-repentance-faq.htm   Goodness, creation six days,* baptised in it, in spades. It from Him, His Face.   God inherently Good, One’s inheritance made when we turn toward His wood,** walk in His way, to, through the Door, today.*** ____________ * Reference the severa

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

West of Eden

...after reading Joshua 1:10-18, and considering Ephesians 6:12 My soul, let nearly one-fourth of you rest,* like Gad, Reuben and one-half of Manasseh, the greater part of you then don Paul's inventory of spiritual armor, and with prayer, good deeds and witness fight for your brothers and sisters west of your inner-Eden, fight as they, too, are established in their resting places. The battles will be intense, yet harvest shall abound even in conflict. And all the land of

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Come, Find Your Servant

After reading Psalm 119:169-176   Come, find your servant, oh Lord! Among lost sheep this one went astray. To understand is gift from your word. Enliven me and I shall give praise.     Be your hand ready to help, For I've chosen the ways You revealed. Deliverance starts where I have dwelt, On promises remembered and sealed.  

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Gracious Love

It is within Your gracious love that Your words are kept,* not within the mere doing but action born from Awesomeness.**   Beyond feeling and emotion divided by the Spirit's edge,^ is a new world of devotion our hearts grasp and move within.^^ ____________ * Psalms 119:88 ** Ephesians 2:8 ^ Hebrews 4:12 ^^ 2 Corinthians 5:17   (feel free to reply with a link to song that you think of after reading the above)

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

God's Gaze

Narrow is the way; Once inside it is wide.* If sparrows gain His gaze, more so all creatures in earth and sky** _________ * Psalm 119:32 and Matthew 7:13-14 ** Luke 12:4-7    

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Judean Hearts

. . . about the shepherds who "watched their flocks by night", the day Messiah Jesus was born . . .   Quick!  Your gnarled hands grasp your staffs, Poke, fast, the road to Bethlehem, Stack them, leaned against the wall, Kneel, join Heaven’s madrigal.     Sing the earthly shepherd’s way, Spirit touch flesh in what you say. Many have walked past your pastures, Yet, this One comes with Heaven’s cure.    Hint of Nazareth on mother's tongue

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

'Til

Psalm 119:71 (KJV):   It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes   Lamentation's sun rises this morning Eclipsed by the moon of my own moaning Darkness for a moment fits the truth, Enables my soul's shaking, within vicissitudes   Regret cuts like slices before eclipse But at the climax of my sorrow, Holy Spirit, The gleaming from your scimitar awakes 'Til your brightness graces over my mistakes

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Who Is This Lamb?

The cup still tips The crumbs congregate Resembling the motley Joyfully passing the plate   The wine is a river The bread is an ark Which by the Spirit Flows through Christ’s heart   Who is this Lamb Who tells us, “Remember”?* He is I Am Who, being with us, is Savior!   This crust is the bow Christ’s love is the anchor  Faith in Him our sail That captures hope’s breeze, forever ___________ * 1 Cor

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Christmas with the Persecuted

Though men may slander, You talk about us to the Father,* Even if they shout and curse, Love still flows from your infinite purse. Should the Gospel and goodness be reviled, The truth in your Face is a confident smile. Let them make seasons to block how You shine! Jesus, your light remains for all time. You tell us the Father so talked about us, He sent us His Son, to a Bethlehem hut, Who from a virgin brang newness with balm For diseases of mind, body and soul--His calm.

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Commission

(Please first read Acts 1:1-11 and Acts 2).   What jumped out at me was  Acts 1:8   “Earth”, the last word His disciplines heard from Jesus, here. As He left, not bereft, they gathered in Jerusalem. There they received the promise of God, the Holy Spirit, come to live in--among us. Lift up His Name, fill the streets, the language of love, increase. When their hearts, touched by the spark of hope the Good News imparts, ask of y

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

When

When we say “My Lord”, the Lord says, “My Bride”, When we say “The Blood”, redemption sings, sighs. When we all say “Rejoice”, all is fulfilled, For earth has the Word, nothing concealed. Mystery made known, dark’s fled, Christ lights, When we say “Come!”, our hope shines bright. When we endure, salvation seals tight, Where nothing can deter our trust, our delight, As we rest in His grace and song o'er our lives.* ____________ * Zephaniah 3:17 (KJV)  - The Lord thy God in the

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Bruised and Beloved

I don’t think I have ever felt closer to the Lord in prayer.  My wife and I were in an ER, and she was writhing from abdominal pain caused by a golf ball-sized gall stone.  I was gripped by a sense of helplessness as I watched her rock back and forth in rhythmic spasms.  I prayed and so wanted to see the Lord so high and lifted up that—well, that His glory would take care of the rest.  I finally just pleaded with the Lord Jesus, “Will You please be more than a Good Samaritan with my wife?”   Tea

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Heart-tracer

When I was little, I was fascinated by how I could take a U.S. penny, place a sheet of writing paper over it, then make the image of that coin appear by tracing over the impression with a pencil. Gradually, Abraham Lincoln's head would appear. In a way, when we submit to the obedient scrutiny of the Spirit of Jesus, His image appears as He rubs off on us.   We count this process precious, because seeing Jesus appear, as individuals and as His Body, is

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

The Unequal Proposition

God asks us to become equally yoked to an unequal proposition by a common means. The equal yoking = union with; communion with Christ The unequal proposition: that God should humble himself as an obedient man, whereas we as men [humans] should become humble men. God > man; man > man. Christ, through God's will, was asked to close the gap between Heaven and earth, thus filling up all things (Ephesians 1:22-23). We have an infinitely lesser task, one that we cannot realize but by G

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Feelings to Trust

Let the politicians say what they approve.  Whether their sayings are good or bad, there is a stronger, clearer Voice—and strengthening from it.   He Is, and God has never approved His message. He voices, proclaims, disseminates, delegates His will to create and re-create. to love, restore, and love again. He affirms (like at the Jordan) His Son and His feelings toward Him, His children, who obey the call, and in coming are chosen, who by the Spi

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

God-places

One God, Who makes us tremble at His love toward us in our troubles. He is Light, does not ask us to be blind but to trust obedience will always birth right. We dare not take on the spirit of this age, where one man's happiness is another one's rage. We will put on the garment of praise of the high things of God and His grace. This what makes us tremble, this is what keeps souls from drowning in trouble. Ill winds ma

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

Blue Ridge Hope

. . . thinking about the advent of Autumn in the Blue Ridge Mountains of the U.S., and the hope that believers everywhere have in the imminent return of our Lord Jesus:   We have yet to arrive at the brittle temps. From the Cumberland to Stone Mountain, now, the good air can't be spent.   In the mons of West Virginia the burden of being mom will be lessened on the mountains as the children-leaves are dropped.   Turn colors, wait fo

Ragamuffin_John

Ragamuffin_John

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