Monthly Archives: March 2012

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.