Kind  Words

Kind Words

Just think what could happen
in this crazy old world.
If hatred and insults
were no longer hurled.
If patience and listening
were themes for the day.
With kindness and love
in the words we do say.

Instead of just typing
that hurtful reply.
Ask God for His wisdom;
self-control to apply.
And when you start thinking,

“O, Lord, how much more?”
Be thankful in your life,
God’s not keeping score.

Healing for hurt
and kind words for hate.
Start it today
before it’s too late.
You don’t have to stoop
to the level of earth.
For you live much higher,
reborn through new birth.

This new way of speaking
changes more than you know.
As seeds of God’s grace
are what you now sow.
While it may not change
what others will do.
Truth said in love,
will surely change you!

©2018 by Tom Lemler

In the prayer guides I write each week, today’s focus was on encouraging one another.  As I was praying through that focus, I thought about how powerful are words are — whether spoken or written.  In the midst of these thoughts I had a nephew post about the ever-increasing tendency for people to demean and ridicule anyone who might have a differing opinion about anything.  It made me think about how different things could be if everyone would actually take the time to listen to one another and only speak words of truth in ways that would build up those who listen.  . . . And out of that, this poem fell out of my head. 🙂

 
In prayer,
Tom
Happy Birthday Susan!

Happy Birthday Susan!

I look back through time
and wonder where did it go?
The years flew by fast,
though the days oft seemed slow.
On days I feel young,
and feeling quite fine.
It’s hard to remember
that I’m not twenty-nine.

But that can’t be right,
the math doesn’t add up.
For it was that long ago,
the Lord poured into our cup.
A daughter who changed me,
both inside and out.
A gift from the Lord,
of that there’s no doubt!

There’s more to this story,
I suppose I could write.
Of the worry-filled days,
more than one sleepless night.
Of days spent just praying
between life and death.
And wondering if this one,
would be the last breath.

That day hasn’t come yet,
as life moves along.
And this one who has changed me,
fills my life with a song.
Her faith of a child,
helps all who would see.
That a life loving Jesus,
should change you and me!

© 2018 by Tom Lemler

 

Some days I feel old, but it’s not often that I feel old enough to have a 29 year old daughter.  Yet as I write this, I’m a day away from our daughter’s twenty-ninth birthday!  I suppose her perpetual youth helps me stay young (at least that’s what I tell myself 😉 ) but it is her perpetual love of Jesus that does the most for me and those who spend time around her.  So, Happy Birthday Susan and thank you for bringing so much joy and hope into the world!

 

In prayer,                                   

Tom Lemler

VBS 2018 – The students were all getting pictures taken for a craft project and Susan decided she needed her picture taken as well. 🙂

My Mom

The cleaning is done
and I’m ready for the day.
So, as I sit down
I have something to say.
To a godly mother,
no one can compare.
She cares for her family,
their burdens to bear.
 
She does what she can
with the hands of her own.
And prays oft to God
for the seeds which are sown.
Some days she acts tough,
and some days are sweet.
As the needs of her children
she struggles to meet.
 
But meet them she does,
with God’s help and might.
As she calls out to Him,
by day and by night.
He strengthens her hands
for the work to be done.
And fills her with joy
from daughter and from son.
 
You may read these lines
and think, “What does he know?”.
Well, these are the truths
that my mother did show!
Her life of strength,
and tenderness too.
Helps me see Jesus
as God shines right through.
 
And so as you ponder
just what you should do.
I have a message
that might be for you.
Honor your mother,
whether gone or still here.
By being a person
that would bring her great cheer.

© 2018 by Tom Lemler

 
After cleaning the church building to get ready for the Sunday service, I sat down and the opening lines of this poem fell out of my mind. I wasn’t sure where it was headed as I typed the words out, but I offer them in honor of my mom on this Mother’s Day! I’m sure my mom didn’t always understand me (I don’t even always understand myself 🙂 ) but she continues to be a great encourager and example to me.
 
In prayer,
Tom

Words

Words can hurt
and words can heal.
Words can give
and words can steal.
Words divide
and words unite.
Words bring peace
and words can fight.

Words are good
and words are bad.
Words make you happy
and make you sad.
Words are quiet
and words are loud.
Words sound humble
and they sound proud.

And if you still
are not too sure.
Words are dirty
and words are pure.
Words are smooth
and sharp as a knife.
Words restore
and cause much strife.

Words are love
and words are hate.
Words are early
and words are late.
Words are empty
and words are full.
Words will push
and words will pull.

And if you think,
“How can this be?”
Just open your heart
and you will see.
The words themselves
are not to blame.
It’s how they’re used
that causes shame.

I pray this poem
will help you know.
As from your mouth
the words will flow.
Where words are many,
sin will abound.
But it’s through listening,
peace can be found.

And so I pray
the words you use.
Would be words
that Christ would choose.
And as you listen
to the One above.
I pray you speak
His words of love.

© 2018 by Tom Lemler

It has been a tough day and it seems like they have been that way more than not lately.  There is not much that gets me down quicker than hearing words which make me feel like I don’t measure up.  It seems like throughout my life those are the words that stick with me no matter how hard I try to shake free from them.  I began the workday at 6 AM and will likely not be finished until 10 PM or later, so I took a 2 hour lunch break in the middle of the afternoon and sat by the river with God.  As I sat, this poem showed up in my mind and stuck with me until I got back to my office.  I pray that I would be able to focus on the positive words that God would have me to hear and that I would be one who uses the positive words God would have me to share.

In prayer,
Tom

Raise Your Hand

I wonder what would happen,
In a country such as ours.
If the rhetoric was silenced,
And locked away in jars.

If thoughts and words did matter,
And came from our own heart.
If listening to others,
Was where we always start.

If my response was guided,
By what you really said.
Instead of words that others,
Have planted in my head.

To see the hurt and lonely,
And hear their cries of grief.
To embrace an actual person,
Might change our own belief.

So instead of sharing,
That latest made up “fact”.
I pray I stop and question,
Just how would Jesus act.

I think I know the answer,
For I’ve read it in His Word.
He sits with the downtrodden,
To make sure that they’re heard.

He gives them what is needed,
Beyond what they might know.
For He gives Himself quite freely,
His love for them to show.

And so when you are tempted,
To attack “the other side”.
I pray you throw the rhetoric out,
And turn this awful tide!

And if you have no answer,
Know that is still okay.
Often an act of listening,
Means more than what you say!

But if you know the Savior,
Who can heal this broken land.
He is the only answer,
So it’s time to raise your hand!
© 2018 by Tom Lemler

I was praying and thinking this morning about how quick people are to share memes and unsubstantiated “facts” as truth if they fit our personal objectives. As Christians, we know the only lasting answer to the problems we both face and create is Jesus. When I was in school, many years ago, there was an eagerness among students to be the first to “raise your hand” when they knew the answer. Perhaps it is time for Christians to reject the rhetoric of the day and “raise your hand” as you lovingly share the answer of Jesus with those around you.

In prayer,
Tom

True Love

If I could have one wish for you,
I wish that this is what you knew.
That Jesus Christ from up above,
Has shown us what it means to love.

He chose to leave His heavenly throne,
And walk with those who feel alone.
The sick, the poor, the hurting ones,
Were not forgotten by God’s Son.

His life was lived for you and I,
He came to earth so He could die.
His death brought life and hope to all,
Who on His name would choose to call.

For though His body was in the grave,
He came to life with power to save.
His life and death and life again,
Has overcome the curse of sin.

So, back to heaven He did go,
And this is what I hope you know.
He’s coming back again someday,
For those who’ve claimed Him as the Way.

So as you live your life on earth,
I pray you know how much you’re worth.
That you would know the greatest love,
Expressed to you from God above.

And as you live your life today,
May it be words of love you say.
To those around who hurt and grieve,
May your love help them believe.

And when that day arrives at last,
When Christ’s return comes very fast.
I pray that many are with you,
When at last we’re made brand new!
© 2018 by Tom Lemler

I guess I shook my head a little too hard this morning and a new poem fell out.  I’ve been working on a prayer guide for next week while thinking about sermon direction for Easter Sunday, and I guess this is the result for the moment.

In prayer,
Tom

A Look Inside

Sometimes I wonder
     just how life would be.
If people around me
     could see what I see.
For good or for bad –
     could go either way.
There’s always a reason
     I say what I say.

My mind’s always thinking,
     I can’t make it rest.
It looks for the answers
     that always are best.
I wish I could say
     they always are found.
But some days I’m lost,
     just wandering around.

I’ve learned to examine
     these thoughts in my mind.
To see if their truth,
     in God’s Word I find.
If they don’t measure up,
     I know they’re not true.
They’re just random thoughts
     from out of the blue.

While something within me
     does long to be heard.
So often I’m silent,
     not saying a word.
For fear does take over,
     I’ve seen it before.
What if I speak and
     the response is ignore?

It’s happened too often,
     at least in my past.
The decisions are made
     before I’m even asked.
The pain is too great
     to think no one cares.
So my thoughts stay with me
     and they can keep theirs.

There is a problem
     with a conclusion like this.
To learn from each other
     too often we miss.
To speak and to listen
     are both hard to do.
Perhaps one for me
     and perhaps one for you.

So we make every effort,
     the bonds of peace to maintain.
Through the power of the Spirit
     and the Lamb that was slain.
We look at each other
     as a creation of God.
We may be unique
     but we’re surely not odd.

God has a purpose
     for someone like me.
I hold to this truth
     even if I can’t see.
He also has purpose
     for someone like you.
You’re His creation
     so I know this is true.

So when we differ
     in how we perceive.
Find our common ground
     in the One we believe.
Since we both have value
     that’s given from above.
Our response to each other
     should always be love.

© 2015 by Tom Lemler

I’ve been in the church building this evening cleaning and then waiting for some meetings to finish up so I can finish getting the building ready for tomorrow. As I waited, I went outside to walk the trails and spend time with God where this poem showed up in my mind. If I allow my mind to dwell in the past too long, it seems like I can find far too many times when I’ve tested the waters of speaking my mind or making my desires known only to end up with the feeling of being rejected as my requests are declined or I’m moved out of roles so they can be filled by someone with better credentials or pedigree. I’m not sure why God gave me this poem other than to offer the readers a glimpse into my mind — scary place that it is. 🙂 I pray that God uses it for His purposes and His glory.

In prayer,
Tom