I am a person of color
I probably don’t look like it to you
I guess that’s the point, too
The only thing you can really point to
Is the color of my skin
My shade of melanin
You see the outside, not within
But I don’t look like who I am
At least not what your prejudice can
Discern as a Latin American
Wait, does racism only belong to Africans?
Does their starkness of skin contrast monopolize
What is only natural to recognize
Because it doesn’t require our heart, just our eyes
To see that, to no one’s surprise,
Some others look more different than you and I
But if you knew what was inside
And the battles I’ve waged. Mine.
Not by great great granddad’s, but mine.
Although I’m sure he had trouble besides.
But I, I have fought a cultural war
My view of the world is different than yours
Not wrong, not right, but different, of course
Because I knew how I felt in your world
How I knew I was maybe less different, not more
But still different.
I’m not sure if it’s easier that I’m white
It probably is, because I can hide
The fact that I’m different inside
That my dad’s citizenship is naturalized
That illegals lived with us as a child
That brings up another painful aside
These “illegals” were good and decent, and tried
To do the right thing, to make it right
Their boys, born here, served heroically, and died
For a country and freedom that you and I
Probably take for granted sometimes
But back to the point I’m trying to make
That this social construct that we call race
Is artificial, at least in the way
It presents itself in our culture today
We buy into the victimhood craze
That the sins of our fathers should be punished today
That some lives matters more than others is cra
That guns are somehow more deadly than forceps these days
That violence in schools is wrong but abortion’s ok
That our color is different but our gender’s the same
That our outside appearance is a source of shame
That we can’t notice differences absent of hate
But it’s honestly ok that I’m different than you
God made me, me. And he made you, you.
And if I don’t like who he made you or me to be
Then the problem isn’t you, it’s me.
I don’t have a right to question his sovereignty
Or to say that I’m a victim of bigotry
I’d be an idiot to say that differences don’t exist
We’d be wise to pay attention to this
That inside we’re the same, despite our differences
Inside we’re the same, so let that remind us
That though what’s outside may vary a lot
We’re the same, you and me, whether we like it or not
So we shouldn’t complain if we don’t like our lot
In life. Life is the one thing we’ve all got
On the inside
On the inside we are all made in the image of God


Photo by ian dooley on Unsplash


i’m going on a little trip
not fully sure how far
so i’m gathering all my memories
to put them in this jar

i want to take them with me
and keep them close at hand
so i can pour them on my bed
and wallow now and then

i’ve been saving them for years
they come from everywhere
but there’s enough to go around
they grow only when i share

so i’ll take some out at morning time
and a few more after noon
they’re almost gone by suppertime
spread out from room to room

but as the feathers hold my head
and my eyes have lost their white
all the memories come crawling back
and climb into that jar of mine

then the sun lifts my eyes again
the mercies new each morn
so i share each memory i’ve found
the old ones and the newly born

Mending Fences

Hebrews 4:16 “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”

A decorative fence around his yard did stand
with white pickets, each placed with care.
Crafted and painted and set neatly by hand.
At its beauty all  would stop and stare.

A neighborhood boy, now becoming a man,
still too young, though, to drive tons of steel,
lost control as he drove and destroyed the pen.
He now faced a result, dire and real.

Not a single straight board was standing erect,
all disjointed, dislodged or displaced.
As the master surveyed the wonderful mess,
his options did not start with grace.

He could have elected to act as a judge,
a sure penalty both swift and severe.
No one would blame him for acting as such
or for the justice of his handiwork, either.

“You must make repairs to this chaos you made
every slat put back where it belongs.
And I will be talking to your father today,
or to that man with a badge and a gun.”

He could have instead chosen mercy to bless,
grant an option to make it all right.
Give him a chance to pay for this mess,
and to fix it, if it takes all the night.

“You must make repairs, but I’ll help you, dear child,
and I’ll let you work off your debt.
If we work with great zeal, no one need be wise.
Come now, quickly, with a pep in your step!”

But the man did not choose to be merciful or just,
for a third option was available still.
His election of grace astounded this Puck
with a “miraculous” choice, if you will.

“Are you hurt? Are you scared? Don’t panic, young man.
I’m here and will make all things new.
I’ll take care of this problem with my own feet and hands,
and when I hurry, my paint dries before dew.

“I won’t make you pay, for you’re just a young lad,
and my resources are rich, vast and deep.
I’ll make everything new; the old will be past.
Go and rest and I’ll work as you sleep.

“In the morning you’ll awake and glance all around:
the fence and the yard both renewed.
Perhaps then we’ll walk and remember our bond
that was formed when I sacrificed for you.”

Grace is a gift, both extravagant and free;
undeserved joy and favor unmerited.
We deserve justice, and long so for mercy,
yet find that, in lieu, grace we’ve inherited.

Hurry Up and Wait

Devotional as published on

In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.. Psalm 5:3

The arrival of a baby is such bittersweet anticipation. For almost thirty-seven weeks, my soon-to-be-born son was developing in his mother’s womb. The normal gestation period is forty weeks, but at this point, he could arrive at any time. We knew he would be here soon, but we didn’t know exactly when.

He was our third child, so while the beginning of the pregnancy was still very exciting, we were perhaps a little complacent. After all, it would be months before our little one would be here, so it almost didn’t seem real. The due date seemed an eternity away.

Month by month, though, the time flew by. Every day, our eagerness intensified. We could hardly wait to meet this new addition as he was introduced into our lives. The day that seemed so far away was suddenly upon us. Our expectation of our son’s arrival both lengthened and shortened the waiting period. It made time both speed by and drag.

Sometimes prayer can be that way. We bring our requests to God, expecting an immediate answer. Unfortunately, there is never a specific timetable. God promises to answer our prayers, but he does not say when. We should pray with expectation, though, anticipating his response, regardless of how long it takes. This can make things go by quickly and slowly, both at the same time.

What are you praying for? Are you eagerly awaiting an answer? Spend some time today thanking God for prayers that He’s already answered, and in advance for the prayers he’s going to answer in the future.

After all, we know he’s going to answer, we just don’t know when.



(painting by Kristin O’Connor. Used by permission.)

sprinkles of color paint sweetness to tongue
eyes gazing empty to take it all in
distracted by chaos, colors turn one
steeped in this winsome graffiti called sin

gluttonous dog to vomit returning
sinking my teeth into filling of wrong
swallow, insides now rumbling and churning
ignoring the warnings, choose to chew on

not thinking now, my mind loses its grip
the way of escape i choose to ignore
lost in the luscious left lovely on lips
continuing what tomorrow deplores

dirty and cluttered, depravity’s mess
humbly confessing, grace there awaiting
heeding the call of acceptance, forgiveness
disregarding both failures and mocked disdain

find a new pattern, a brightness of palate
an icy road ends with beauty and love
say no to that voice that draws me into it
and yes to the other sweet whisper above

darkness dims

darkness dims as light’s unfolding
wrapped up in my Savior’s love
Son of God am I beholding
resting in His might above

cherish, o, those words so tender
as He softly speaks my name
at His image I remember
not my sin or dark of shame

at the right hand of the Father
judging saints and sinners all
from His precepts never wandered
from His grace never to fall

saved from that dark pit infernal
getting not what I deserve
son of God and heir eternal
at the feet of Him I serve

sharing heaven with my Savior
life not ending, glory found
resting in the arms of my Lord
resting where pure joy abounds

Olive Press

He holds me in place, gently yet firmly, knowing I won’t run.

I refuse to struggle against his grip – the ever-obedient son.

After all, Father knows best, even when I can’t make sense of it.

I just can’t help wondering, how will my suffering give anyone benefit?

As my hand brushes my skin, fear bumps swell in unison on my chest,

my face and heart involuntarily question the logic of my father’s request.

Why ask this of me? Why this? Why me? Why take what I might freely give?

Before my fears can grip me, rip me, I flip my tears away, or dam them where they live.

My adam’s apple’s swelling and getting harder to swallow.

But from Father’s eyes come peace, certainty, grace; my eyes follow.

Courage can mean a lot of things, but it does not mean fearless.

And what of Mother? Will she still laugh, or in her mourning remain tearless?

I try not to dwell too long on the coming scene, on how I will die.

I try not to think too much of the altar of twigs, of where I will lie.

Or even consider the cords that may bind my hands and feet.

My father will surely make it quick – finished before my first bleat.

So I rest on one knee, where the sacrificial oil will flow,

hesitating slightly, in case mercy he decides to bestow.

My weak body caving to my spirit yet willing:

Father, if you will, take from me this cup of suffering.