The Night my Savior Died for Me

I apologize for not posting a poem last week, I forgot until it was too late. This is the poem I meant to post last week, and I hope I will be able to schedule my posts a week in advance from here on out, now that I have a bit of a buffer of poems.

This poem was written as I tried to think up words that would go to the tune of There is a Green Hill Far Away that would carry a similar meaning.

The Night my Savior Died for Me

The night my savior died for me
I wonder if I cried
To know the infinite sacrifice
Paid to make me divine.

The day my Savior rose again
Did I shed tears of joy
That I, engraved upon His palms
Could live with Him someday?

Whene’er my Savior answers me
And my beseeching prayer
I feel again His love for me
And His belonging care.

The times my Savior lives in me
I love with all my soul.
I yearn to give my all to Him
And through Him, be made whole.

When Trying isn’t Enough

I wrote this a few months ago and found it on my computer today. It is meant to be a song, and some day I hope it will be.

When Trying isn’t Enough

I stumbled one more time,
and fell, the bitter dust to eat
I push with arms too weary
to bring me to my feet.

I tried and tried to stand
and I’ve failed so many times
Everyone has some last chance
and I think this was mine.

CHORUS: What do I do
when trying isn’t enough?
When my tired arms can’t lift me
and my voice is hoarse and rough
from calling for help
that doesn’t seem to come.
What do I do when I try
and it isn’t enough to get me home.

Shaking hands reach out
for another mirage of hope.
but the water disappears
and I gasp with my parched throat

“I’ve traveled many miles
in this desert, in this heat,
Is this to be forever?
Is there no crust for me to eat?”

CHORUS

As I give up hope,
I rest, despair now overwhelming
then a shadow falls on me
and I see an arm extending.

“I’m here to help, I’m here.
Let me care for you.
Your Brother will not leave
and will always be true.”

CHORUS’: I turn to you
When trying isn’t enough
When my tired arms can’t lift me
and my voice is hoarse and rough
I’m calling for help
and my Friend has come
I’ll lean on you when I try,
You are enough to get me home.

Names of My God

My poem this week is one I wrote on my mission.

Originally published Dec 04, 2017

On a mission, I am blessed to see how the gospel blesses people in so many phases of life, from being a young adult to raising a family to being old, and from everything from sickness to heartache to searching for truth. The gospel’s got you covered. This fits in interestingly with the fact that Christ has so many names throughout the scriptures for the many different things He does. He is the bread of life for those seeking bread, and he is the Lord of Hosts for those needing protection and vengeance. His perfection doesn’t mean he just perfectly fills one role, rather, it means that He meets our needs perfectly through the many roles He plays.

Names of My God

It’s easy to see that Christ has many names
Throughout all of sacred writ.
As he ministers and administers,
Scriptures bear record, and use names that try to fit:

The Lord is my Shepherd when I, like a sheep, have gone amiss,
He leadeth me in paths of righteousness when I try to find my way,
He becomes my leader when I need, badly, to be led.
I can always trust my Shepherd to never lead His sheep astray.

Jesus is my Savior from sin and from death.
He’s always there to save me from aching guilt and pain-
He will save me from the valley of the shadow of death,
And I’ll keep following Him, my Savior, again.

Christ- my Redeemer- paid my eternal debt
Nothing left unpaid, no deed left undone.
Every time I come up short, He makes up the difference
And every time I lose, I can trust in what He’s won.

My Messiah is God’s Firstborn, my Eldest brother,
My perfect example, my greatest role model,
He is the perfect one to look to, to know
How to act, how to live, how to stand up tall.

He is a God, the Creator of everything,
All-knowing, all-powerful, all-wonderful.
Though heavens and earth shall pass away,
He will still be there, greater than they all.

A great rabbi, a teacher of the truths of eternity
He taught of Heaven, of a Father full of love.
He helped those around him, in life (and all of us, now) to understand
That His gospel is for each of us, from a Father up above.

Whatever I may need Him for-
For guidance, truth, answers, or just a helping hand-
He is my God, my Shepherd and Savior,
Redeemer, Brother, Teacher, and my Friend.

Gratitude Day 7: My Redeemer

I wanted to finish this week by talking about one thing I’m especially grateful for. Though I may not always remember to thank Him for it, truly everything I have is from God. I want to focus on one aspect of that, and #GiveThanks for my Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, and all that He has done for me.

I thought a very applicable passage to use in a poem on expressing gratitude to the Savior is Micah 6:6-8, one of my favorite Old Testament passages.

My Redeemer

How can I thank the Man,
Who, stooping with my heavy cross,
Ascended to the hill
Where He died?

How can I thank the Man
Who suffered every pain I know,
Every broken bone, every wounded heart,
All my hurt inside?

How can I thank the Man
Who lived to teach me how to live,
Setting an example, often lonely,
So I could have a stalwart guide?

How can I thank the Man
Who drunk the bitterest of cups,
Who has mourned when I have wept,
And comforted when I’ve cried.

How can I thank the Man?
Ten thousand rams are not enough,
Nor ten thousand rivers of oil,
However deep, however wide.

How can I thank the Man?
I’ll do justly, I’ll love mercy,
I’ll walk humbly with Him,
And forever with Him abide.

Gratitude Day 6: The Scriptures

I apologize for not posting this yesterday, I had a rough night:

One thing that has consistently been a source of strength and light in my life is the scriptures. If I turn to them with a willing and open heart, I am very often able to receive answers to the questions I have, even if they may not be the answers I want. I want to #GiveThanks for the scriptures.

Scriptures

Whatever you are feeling,
Whatever’s in your heart,
Someone else has felt it too,
And recorded it, in part.

Have you ever just felt lonely?
Moroni knows how that is.
His family dead, his life in danger,
You can read how he lived.

And what about discouraged?
Alma and Amulek have this addressed:
Read of how they carried on
When in prison, with seemingly no success.

When you feel like everyone’s against you,
Nephi’s got your back.
His brothers murmured and even beat him,
But read how his kindness never lacked.

And any feeling you’ve ever felt
Has been felt by our Savior, dear.
Read how He died so you can live,
When you need Him, He’ll be near.

These heroes of the pages
Really lived, and really felt
The emotions that I’ve gone through,
I can read, and look to them for help.

Gratitude Day 3: Repentance

I know how much I mess up, and I want to #GiveThanks for the divine gift of repentance.

Repentance

For every stumble, there’s a helping hand,
Every wrong road has a way back.
For ever closed door, there’s an open one,
Every small light keeps off the black

For every missed chance, there’s a second one,
Every friend lost could return.
For every test failed, another’s given,
Every mistake is a fact learned.

For every pain, there’s a relief,
Every prayer has an answer.
For every sin there’s a solace,
Every debt has a Savior.

The man who wasn’t crucified

In church today, during sacrament meeting, one of the speakers made a comment that he heard once from a Baptist Preacher: “Jesus had to be treated like Barabbas for Barabbas to be treated like Jesus.” I thought that was an intriguing thought, and I turned it into this poem. 

The man who wasn’t crucified

Imagine yourself as Barabbas. 
Facing certain death
For your mistakes and crimes:
Murder, sedition, and insurrection.

Suddenly, guards bring you out in chains. 
The crowd is angry, but not at you —
At a strange, quiet man,
Who doesn’t look like a criminal. 

Pilate asks who the crowd will free,
And somehow, they call your name. 
In disbelief, but also relief, you walk away,
Chains unlocked, now a free man. 

Maybe you later go watch the man on the cross,
Dying instead of you. 
Or later hear stories of how he lived
And did miracles for the poor. 

Maybe you later change your life
When given this second chance,
And try to live as that man, Jesus, no longer could,
To make up for his unjust death.

One thing I know, that fateful day,
When the innocent man died,
Barabbas was not the only man
Whose life was saved by Jesus’ death. 

I’m worth it

My poem this week came while thinking about my friend who struggles a lot with low self-image.

I’m worth it

If God can see

All the times I failed,
When I didn’t live up to my hopes,
All the moments I regret,
Or should regret but don’t,

All the ways I’m weak,
When I topple to Satan’s breezes,
All my lifetime of mistakes,
Choosing the world first, not Jesus,

All the times I stopped trying
To do what I know I should,
All the times I rebelled,
And I shunned God and what is good —

If God can see all this in me
And still loves me enough to die for me,
Maybe I can love myself, too.

Take my hand

This last week, I had an experience helping a friend who wanted to self-harm. Some of my thoughts about that experience developed into the first stanza in this poem, and the rest of the poem followed. 
I don’t personally struggle with temptations to self-harm. If you’re reading this and you do struggle with those thoughts, please know that you are loved. 

Take my hand 

“I cut my wrists,
So I know I won’t feel comfortable in heaven.”
Christ said, “my wrists were cut for you, 
Take my hand and you will be comfortable with me.”

“I’m different, I’m made fun of, 
So I know I’ll feel alone in heaven.”
He said, “I was mocked for being different, 
Take my hand, you belong with me.”

“My friends say I’m not good enough, and they left me,
So I know I’ll feel alone in heaven.”
He said, “in my darkest hour, my friends abandoned me, 
Take my hand, and I’ll always be your friend.” 

“I fail, and fail, and fail, and fail to choose the right, 
So I know I’m not worthy to be in heaven.”
He said, “I know how hard it is to choose to drink the bitter cup,
Take my hand, I can make you worthy.”

“The world has taken from me, and abused me, 
So I know there’s not enough of me left to go to heaven.”
He said, “the world abused and hurt me, too. 
Take my hand, I know you are enough.”

“Others are so much more righteous than I 
So I know I’ll never make it into heaven.”
He said “there’s room for everyone who wants, 
Take my hand, and you’ll make it with me.”

“I doubt myself, I doubt in you sometimes,
So I know I won’t hold on all the way to heaven.”
He said, “I will come back to you as many times as you need. 
Take my hand for this next step.”

“I’m a terrible person, I’ll never be worthy of love
So I know I’m not worth your help.”
He said, “Take my hand, and follow me.
Heaven wouldn’t be heaven without you there.”

He Lived for Us

This poem stuck me as a great one to go along with Alma 34, which I read this week for Come Follow Me. is one of my favorite chapters in the Book of Mormon. I especially think about verse 10, where Amulek describes the Atonement as an “infinite and eternal” sacrificed. This has always struck me as odd, because although I certainly see that the effects of Christ’s sacrifice are infinite and eternal, the sacrifice itself seems to have been limited in time and scope. Christ gave up his life, but he was resurrected. He suffered, but He is not suffering now. If any of you have any insight into this, I would love to hear your thoughts. 

One thought I’ve had is that part of the sacrifice that Christ made was sacrificing His life as He lived it to be an example and to be worthy to perform the Atonement. He sacrificed His will entirely and for all eternity, not just in the Garden of Gethsemane when pleading if the cup could pass from Him. 

He Lived for Us

Written on my mission, May 6, 2018

On a mission one spends a lot of time studying and pondering the Atonement. One thing I have been struck with was that Christ didn’t just come down to earth, suffer, die, and resurrect. First, He lived a life. A perfect life. That means that every single choice, every single temptation faced, would have to be faced and overcome perfectly. I can’t imagine the sort of pressure this was on Him, but I am fortunate that because of His perfect life, our lives, though far from perfect now, can become better.

His first steps were not on the road to the hill called Calvary.
His first breath was not taken in the Garden Gethsemane.
His hands were first a carpenter’s hands, before nailed to the cross.
Before He died, our Savior and Redeemer lived for us.
 
Christ was born in Bethlehem, a baby in a manger.
He grew from grace to grace, though to temptation was no stranger.
He always chose the harder right, never the easier wrong.
The Mighty God Jehovah served the weak He was among. 

He taught us how to live our lives, He said, “Come, follow Me.”
He did good long before he died for us on Calvary.
He fulfilled His father’s will in all things from the start,
Until the end, upon the cross, when sin’s pain broke his heart.

He is a man of sorrows, well acquainted with our grief,
But He knew the way to give true healing and relief
Was to be perfect—to bear the weight of the world in every deed.
And when we make His soul an offering for sin, he’ll see His seed.

It’s as if He walked a tightrope over a pit to save a friend—
One misstep and down He’d fall, a poor and unhappy end.
But Christ was perfect! Every step was straight and strong and true
So He could qualify as sacrifice and die for me and you.

He’ll look back, and He can see the travail on His great soul.
But if just one man, through His sacrifice, can be made pure and whole,
He shall be satisfied, His joy in heaven how sublime.
How great a man, my Jesus Christ, how perfect and divine.