He let the world go dark

Originally published 07-19-19

This poem is based off a line someone said as a part of
their testimony last Sunday. That line became the last stanza, and I wrote all
the other stanzas to set the scene. Sometimes we don’t really appreciate just
how much of a miracle the Atonement and Resurrection was, but I think it helps
to think of how the people would have felt when Christ died.

He let the world go dark

Disciples fled
when He was seized.

Leaders mocked
but He opened not His mouth.

Followers watched
as He was condemned.

Peter cried
when the cock crowed thrice.

Mary wept
to see her Son on a cross.

Friends mourned
as they buried His body.

He let the world go dark
to rise up on that Sunday
shining brilliantly.

Hosanna to the Son of David

Originally published 07-07-19

I submitted this poem for consideration in the new hymnbook as a hymn.

Hosanna to the Son of David

A baby boy lay sleeping in an inn at Bethlehem,
And nearby, angels sang their song of peace, goodwill to men:
CHORUS: Hosanna to the Son of David, come in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest, glory be to God.

The multitudes flocked to the mount to learn great truths from Him.
They followed as He blessed the meek, and sang in praise this hymn:

When Jesus rode a humble colt into Jerusalem,
The joyful crowd waved palm branches and cried unto His name:

When soldiers took away the Christ, the crowd grew sparse and small.
And gone were all the hopeful throngs who once had cheered and called:

Although the cross stood on a hill, no multitudes there came.
Though Christ atoned for all their sins, no grateful voices sang:

He rose again, the third day passed, death’s victory was gone.
For justice had been answered, and our Advocate had won:

We take His body and His blood and promise as we do
That though the road is long and hard, we always will be true:

What I Believe

Originally published 07-03-19

This was one of my submissions for the new hymnal. I submitted it specifically for the children’s songbook.

What I Believe

I’ve never seen the baby wrapped up, in a manger stall,
But I believe that Christ was born to bless and save us all.
I’ve never seen Him go and heal the blind or cure the sick,
But I believe I can help and heal those I am with.

I’ve never seen my Savior suffer in Gethsemane,
But I believe He suffered so that He could comfort me.
I’ve never seen the wooden cross where my dear Savior died,
But I believe He understands my pain and sacrifice.

I’ve never seen the tomb where angels rolled away the stone,
But I believe it’s empty—Jesus won’t leave me alone.
I’ve never seen a lot of things I still believe are true,
But I know that God loves me, and so I will love you, too.

Behold the Man

Originally published 6-25-19

This poem is based off of Elder Uchtdorf’s eponymous talk and the scripture John 19:5, where Pilate pleads with the Jews to “Behold the man!” and to not kill the innocent Christ. I thought it would be fitting to share, as last week we read this in Come Follow Me.

Behold the Man

When encompassed with sharp grief,
Behold the Man.
When surrounded by pressing trials,
Behold the Man.

In affliction’s fiery furnace,
Behold the Man.
Under guilt’s crushing weight,
Behold the Man.

In bleak, hopeless night,
Behold the Man
Who died the darkest yet most hopeful day.
Behold the Man.

See Him as who He truly is—
Behold the Man.
Follow Him, love Him,
Behold the Man.

Peace will come when we
Behold the Man.
So come to Him, remember Him —
Behold the Man.

The Carpenter of Nazareth

Originally published 05-22-19

Written July 5, 2018

I wrote this on my mission, but never sent it home. It is loosely based on a similar
poem I read of the same title. A note I wrote to myself on the side of my notebook on
that day reads “What can’t Christ heal?”

The Carpenter of Nazareth

The carpenter of Nazareth,
he fixes broken things.
Broken tools and broken toys,
whatever people need.

He takes the broken object
and examines it up close.
He feels the break, studies the crack,
and to his tools he goes.

He gently holds the wood in place
and starts to fix the crack,
‘til piece by piece he’s fixed it up
and gives it gently back.

Many come from Nazareth
to the carpenter to ask
if he could fix their broken thing,
if he was up to such a task.

And always, a smile and a reply
that he would try his best.
No one left denied of his care,
each felt an honored guest.

His Son saw all His father’s works
and when He became old
He also fixed up broken things,
but He fixed broken souls.

And as nails pierced this Master’s palms
into a cross of wood,
He gently took each soul in hand
and did what just He could.

He mends our cracks, He heals our wounds,
He picks up fallen souls.
The Son of Nazareth’s carpenter
came to make us whole

Choose Every Day to Believe

Originally published 05-18-19

We talked about faith in my institute class last week, and it inspired this poem. It is written as a song.

Choose Every Day to Believe

Two hundred years ago, a grove of trees
Blazed brightly, and a young boy’s prayer was heard.
He left the grove, and taught the world the truth,
I was not there, though, when that all occurred.

CHORUS: I never saw the boy in Palmyra,
And I never met the man in Nauvoo.
I get to see the labor, though, that he worked to achieve,
And I get to choose every day to believe.

Two thousand years ago, Jerusalem
Cheered as on a donkey rode their King.
He walked the garden of my olive press,
But I was not there to shout and praise and sing.

CHORUS: I never saw the boy, the Nazarean,
And I never met the man of Galilee.
I get to see the labor, though, that He worked to achieve,
And I get to choose every day to believe.

In the struggles of the day to day,
I’ll choose faith and go and light the world
I don’t know all things, and I have doubts,
But I am here to wave a flag unfurled.

CHORUS: I never saw the prophet, Joseph.
I never met my Savior, Jesus Christ
But I get to labor with them in this work that we’ll achieve
I get to choose every day to believe.

I—I choose every day to believe.

Break All Bonds

Originally published 05-07-19

This poem was inspired by the Come Follow Me for this last week. I loved the line in Luke 13:16, where Christ describes healing a woman on the Sabbath as “loosed from this bond.” I like the imagery, and I wrote this poem in response.

Break All Bonds

When an ox
falls in a hole
would you not each
rescue her?

Do you not—
even on the Sabbath—
lead your sheep
to be watered?

A daughter of Abraham,
too, can be loosed
from her bonds
on God’s day.

He who breaks all bonds
comes now to you:
will you let Him free you

Easter Poem: The Price

Originally published 04-21-19

Though this is not the original poem I had planned to post on Easter, I hope it still helps you remember the reason behind what Christ did on the event we celebrate today.

The Price

No money changed hands,
no contract was made,
no sum was counted out,
yet still, a price was paid.

Though paid in blood, not cash,
though paid for others’ sins,
though more than anyone could pay,
the price was paid by Him.

He paid it, not for fame,
He paid it, not just because He must,
He paid with His great drops of blood.
The price was paid for us.

He asks no slaughtered lamb,
He asks no rivers of oil,
He asks no burnt offerings, now.
The price was paid in full.

Miracle to Me

Originally published 04-10-19

Miracle to Me

A carpenter who dressed in homespun wool
changed water into wine, and changed the world
some heard, but didn’t have the faith to go
and follow Him who prophets had foretold.

There are many who dismiss Him as a fraud,
who disbelieve that He was ever real.
They say no one can live once they have died,
but that’s not what I know, not what my heart feels

And with the power of His sacrifice,
I am made clean, I am made calm from sin.
He smooths my troubled heart, and I’m inspired
to change my life—through Him be born again.

And no one will ever see His miracles
until we realize we lack something—
The worth of water in an empty well
turns me to my living King.

He fed the thousands, made the water wine,
raised the dead and made the blind to see.
But when I close my eyes and know He’s there—
that’s the greatest miracle for me

Give Me a Night in Bethlehem

Originally published 03-24-19

I get together with a group of people from my ward every Sunday to talk about what we have learned the past week in our scripture studies. This week we had a good talk about what it means to come close to our Savior and to come to know him. There were a lot of great thoughts and comments, and I put some of my personal thoughts on paper. I want to go to BYU Jerusalem, but I feel like going there won’t help me know Him if I don’t put in the effort to get to know Him now.

Give Me a Night in Bethlehem

Give me a night in Bethlehem
to see that wooden manger
to kneel with shepherds, bow with kings
before my humble Savior.

Give me a day in Nazareth
to walk with the carpenter’s son,
to hear His voice, to know His face,
to see how He showed love.

Give me a night in Gethsemane
to see Him fall and bleed,
to hear Him pray for me—for me
His loving, begging pleas.

Give me a day on Calvary’s hill
to see, hung from my cross,
that He suffered to the very end,
when His great life was lost.

Give me these days—not for faith,
for I already believe in Him—
but that I may know and thank my Christ;
my God, my Lord, my Friend.