How Deep is the Well?

(Another shooting is in the news today, as well as another forest fire causing evacuations.)

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.
Romans 12:15

Father, how deep is the well
of compassion,
I wonder?
Praises, so much deeper than me.
For the volume of human suffering
we can view
at a glance
is overwhelming.
It’s mind-numbing.
Yet the depth of your caring
for us is limitless.
We can draw on that which we lack.
We can weep with the suffering,
for that which we draw on
is deeper than we.

© Joel Tipple 11/8/2018

Election Eve

He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;
Daniel 2:21 ESV

Though I’d like to believe
at the end of the day
I’ve risen above
the political fray.
Though to outward appearance
I remain composed,
it’s a sham.
I’m pretending.
I admit it.

Though I read I should pray
for those in charge,
I rail to God,
and my wife,
in gestures writ large.
How could he make a decision like that?
How could she speak with so little tact?

And so it goes,
from election cycle
to cycle.
The choices are mountainous,
with upsides on the upsides
and downsides on the down.

Back to the table, I go,
reconvening peace talks
with God.
The cease-fire holds.

© Joel Tipple 11/6/2018


Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.
Romans 12:15 ESV

Empathy  1the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner.

I’m spending time
trying to see the world
through another’s eyes.
I’ve spent a lifetime
seeing it through mine,
so I’ve got that down.

If I’m fortunate enough
to get to listen to someone
being real with me,
I don’t rush to convene a jury of one.
I don’t give priority
to rendering a verdict
regarding their circumstances.

Can you imagine yourself in my position
no matter what matter of person I am?
I know it must be hard for you,
I’ve seen you…
and it’s hard for me too.

© Joel Tipple 10/18/2018


the bully,
waiting to tap you on the shoulder and remind you why he’s there.
He likes to whisper things like:
you can’t,
you won’t,
it’s too hard.
As evidence for his claims he will
use your past against you,
conveniently leaving out that the reason
things went badly was because you
listened to him.
He prefers
the dark
because he knows he doesn’t do well in
the light.
The light causes him to become
small and insignificant.
is his enemy.
is something he would much rather
not be in the same room with.
Words like:
hurt his ears.
Try as he might,
when he digs around in his pockets
for the key
to a home filled with prayer,
unable to find one,
he walks away.

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear but of power,
and of love, and of a sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

New Day Beginning

There’s my heart
born in
That place in my soul
well protected
a rechargeable
using the satellite
of my mind
each morning
as it searches for
filled up I feel
lifted beyond
circumstances to
elevated above
challenges to
even the oldest
and strongest of trees
from outside of themselves draw