The Gospel

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let me feel the gospel
Lord
anyone could say the words
so don’t let them pass right through me
hardly pausing on their way
let them change me
rearrange me
I’m willing to learn
God, you hear what my heart has to say.

let me carry the gospel
Father
its bright colors spilling forth
with grace to balance justice
east west south and north

friends we’ve become
your gospel and me
it’s the truth that shines
from the eyes of the knower
but it’s not only a companion
that wants to hang around
it would much rather be with
those who are sowers

gospel moves through music
through songs that inspire
through words lifting hearts
and taking us higher
like a good rain
washes the world clean
the gospel takes the scales from our eyes
while the riches of God it leaves

to everyone
around the world
to every land
and every flag unfurled
till the people all know
that Jesus died but now lives
we’ll share the precious gospel
just like our savior did

© Joel Tipple
#29/14

Intercession of the Spirit

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We do not know what we should pray for as we ought,
but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us
with groanings which cannot be uttered —Romans 8:26

Thank you Holy Spirit for Your work in me,
praying for me in ways too high for me to understand.
I keep my body a temple for You, while you intercede
for me in accordance with God’s plan.

Heaven on earth may not seem possible
due to our earthly circumstance,
but we have an advocate in the Spirit of God
so we are never left to chance.

© Joel Tipple
331

Vessel to Serve

Why did you call
me,
this nondescript vessel?
I’m every-day-ware, with a few chips from use.
How do I dare take a place on your table?
And yet you say I’m beautiful. And you use me.

It’s the same mistake we make every time,
trying to discover our purpose
our way.
But the vessel cannot dictate to the potter.
It doesn’t have the final say.

Let your love pour forth from this vessel.
Help me get out of the way, and let Your Spirit work.
I know this God, You didn’t make your vessel
to store.
You made it to serve.

Here at your table, your everyday vessels,
redeemed and rescued from sin.
We humbly offer ourselves Lord.
however you care to use us,
pray begin, Lord.
Begin.

Let your love pour forth from this vessel.
Help me get out of the way, and let Your Spirit work.
I know this God, You didn’t make your vessel
to store.
You made it to serve.

© Joel Tipple
310

Speak Into My Life

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Speak into my life hope.
The horizon appears bleak sometimes
and I’m looking for a length of rope.

Speak into my life light.
At times it seems so dark and I can’t see well to fight.

Speak into my life strength.
I’ve tried too long to make it on my own
and feel I’m about to break.

Speak into my life faith.
I started with what seemed enough.
Now my belief feels second rate.

Speak into my life and pray.
We both need God to fight for us
and help us win the day.

For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”
Matthew 18:20 English Standard Version (ESV)

© Joel Tipple

The Master

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Almighty God,
please
give me the wisdom
to know that I am not wise.
I tend to slip that mask on,
thinking it a clever guise.
But I am typical of the youngest,
and though I crow and jest,
my insecurities show through,
even through my best.
Can I give myself as a canvas?
Would you take the brush?
I believed I was so artful,
but my colors were muddied
and rushed.
I’d rather the master
paint me,
and Your signature on me be found.
Your name will then be spoken,
and I will delight in the sound.

© Joel Tipple

Entertained

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Something my maternal grandfather said once made an impression on me. I’m not even sure why it impressed me at the time. I’m going to guess I was somewhere in my tweens, though I could have been younger. He said young people have to be constantly entertained, or something to that effect. I suppose I could have shrugged it off as one of those statements “old people” make. You know, like, “When I was a child, I had three rocks to play with; and I was lucky, the kid down the street only had two!” But over the years I’ve given what he said some consideration. Why is it that we have to be busy doing something all of the time? I think we all know people who have to spend almost every waking moment involved in some activity: video games, TV, etc. If we say we’re Christians, how much time does God get? Does He get dibs on our day? Does he get the leftovers? In the long run, in our search for entertainment, are we settling for a second rate life?

God, why do I seem
always to be dancing
away from the dream.
The dream of a relationship
with you
that’s more than an extra
15 or 20 minutes
when I can fit You in.
The world tries to sell
me a life that’s
more “As seen on TV”
than
hand crafted.
And as usual,
I get what I pay for.
Help me to give less of me to that,
and more of me to You.
I don’t believe You
ever intended our lives to be
filled with drudgery.
I just think we’ve been suckered into
buying what life is not.
Show us what life is, God.
Show me.

Adopted

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3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,
4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will. Ephesians 1:3-5 (NASB)

If you knew me
before the world’s foundation was laid
knew my foibles and faults
all the mistakes I’ve made
chose to adopt me
and call me your own
only waiting for my decision
to set my life toward that home
If you still called me
knowing all that you did
even when I foolishly
tried to hide my sin
If you knew that even after
I asked forgiveness and joined this life
that sometimes I’d stumble and create
unnecessary strife
If you knew all that
and still gave me your name
the least I can do
is every dawn
say thank you
and start again.
© Joel Tipple

(NASB) – New American Standard NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE Copyright (C) 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977,1995 by THE LOCKMAN FOUNDATION A Corporation Not for Profit LA HABRA, CA All Rights Reserved http://www.lockman.org

Entreaty

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Lord, I have heard the report about You and I
fear.
O Lord, revive your
work in the midst of the
years,
In the midst of the years
make it known;
In wrath remember
mercy.
Habakkuk 3:1-2

Lord, I pray to remember
not only your sweet love and grace
but your strong hand
and your judgement.

Let every corner of my being be laid
bare before you.
At the end of my life here on earth
let my life scroll be a worthy document.

More than we can bear

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Fear not, for I am with you;
be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

God you did not promise this life would be easy,
but you promise strength
in the midst of the storm.
No matter how ugly the news we hear,
in a cold world you are there
for life sustaining warmth.

The false comfort and ease of a life
ignoring your truth
can push our craft toward an inevitable cliff,
but if we believe and act upon
the message of salvation
You will make of our detritus and debris
a lighthouse and life saving ship.