It is time for a major confession: I used to love to write poetry. I do not remember when it started, but when I was in High School, I had notebook after notebook full of poems. I know I had an English teacher that thought I was pretty good at it, but thinking back I have a feeling she just felt sorry for me. While the other guys in Creative Writing class were writing about Star Wars and Ghostbusters, I thought I would be the next Robert Frost. I think I was closer to the William Hung of Poetry. And I wrote about everything. Sports, Nature, Politics, Girlfriends, God, everything. Its pretty embarrassing (I grew up with my mom and 2 sisters…don’t judge me!). My poetry days ended almost 11 years ago now. That is just after I met and started dating Heather.
Just after our 2nd or 3rd date, I went to her house really early in the morning, and left a bouquet of flowers, and a card with one of my poetic masterpieces on it. It was the first (and last) poem that I wrote her, and she never even read it. When she went out to her car that morning to leave for work, she found a card and flowers sitting on her car, exactly where I placed them. The only problem was that they weren’t the flowers I put there, and it wasn’t the card I put there either. The beautiful bouquet that cost me a pretty penny had been replaced by a beaten up, dilapidated, dying rose. The card had been swapped by an old envelope with fingerprints on it (that smelled like Buffalo sauce). Inside the envelope, she found the corniest card you could possibly find in Hallmark with a “Roses are Red…” poem inside of it. In it, “I” expressed my dying love for her. This was the morning after our 2nd or 3rd date in which I had told her that I wasn’t going to use the “love” word until I was engaged to someone. Which was awesome: because now my future wife thought I was cheap, dirty, a hypocrite with huge emotional swings, and the worst kind of poet. Only the last one was true. She called to thank me for the flower and card (which later proved to me how incredibly sweet she actually was). It wasn’t until later that I saw “my” dirty card sitting on her coffee table that I realized what in the world had happened. It didn’t take me very long to convince her that someone (she lived next to a group of guys by the beach in Encinitas who grew their own “herbs”) had swapped the flowers and card that I placed there with versions of their own. Just before I told her my poem was much better than theirs she shared, “I figured you weren’t the poem kind of guy. My dad wouldn’t have let you hear the end of it”. And that was the last poem I ever wrote. And the world is better off for it.
I’m not sure if my extensive poetic background is the reason I love the book of Psalms so much, but I certainly do love it. Its become one of my favorite books of the Bible. At our church, I have been doing several messages through the Psalms, talking about God’s presence in every situation. This morning, I just finished a message about God being involved in our every day life. And I told our church that the way He often does this is through the Bible. At the end of my message, I challenged our church to read the Bible every day this week. In fact, I challenged them to read the same Psalm together, Monday through Friday. We are reading the Psalm that corresponds with that day of the week (Monday, July 16th = Psalm 16, etc). Starting tomorrow, I will post the first of 5 devotionals, that go along with the corresponding Psalm. These devotionals will be written by 5 different people in our church that I knew would do a great job sharing their heart. None of them are aspiring to be full-time devotional writers (that I know of). But all of them have a unique perspective, and a desire for God to use them. I invite you to join us for the next 5 days as we read these wonderful chapters of poetry together, and please join in on the discussion in the comments section underneath the blog entries as they are posted. Share what God is showing you. Share what you were blessed by. Encourage the writers of the devotionals. The Bible is so rich and beautiful, and I look forward to
writing comments using haiku’s reading along with all of you.