Person in the Pew

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Dear person in the pew in front of me,
I’ve got a problem with my vision,
not because you’re six-foot-three.
It’s not anything about you, person in the pew,
it’s what’s inside of me. Don’t move.

I need to be
centered in God,
right in line.
Fed by love that’s grown on the vine.
Feeding other believers as they feed me
and seeing what God sees.
I’ve got to move.

I can’t sit around and wait until I’m more spiritual,
or whatever it is that I think I’m not.
Newton’s first law of motion’s
conflict with my emotions
has to stop.
It’s gotta stop.

Centered in God,
right in line.
Fed by love that’s grown on the vine.
Feeding other believers as they feed me
and starting to see what God sees.
I have to move.

That habit of independence,
that lie I believed,
that a lone ranger Christian
is just as or more free
restricted my use in the body of Christ
and hobbled what God could do with me.
Then I moved.

Centered in God,
right in line.
Fed by love that’s grown on the vine.
Feeding other believers as they feed me
and starting to see what God sees.
On the move.

Meeting face to face in a small group
and not treating church like entertainment I subscribe to.
Instead of holding up point scores for sermons every Sunday,
I’m now a functioning part of the body.
Hey brother in the front pew,
turn around.
I’m glad to know you.

© Joel Tipple
#11/14

The Heart of a Carpenter

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It takes the heart of a carpenter
to see a building whole
with only a sketch or blueprint
to guide.
It takes the heart of a carpenter
and vision
for the completed building,
to make possible the possibilities.

It takes the heart of a carpenter
to see in a man
beyond what he can see in himself,
to see beyond rubble and debris
and dreams knocked over on shelves.

Let me see with your eyes,
dear carpenter.
Give me hands like yours to work.
Make everything I am and ever hope to be
your vision of me,
on earth
and heaven.

© Joel Tipple
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