The following free-verse poem was written by Myra Dempsey as part of a Sunday worship service at her home church, Cross City Columbus. It is based on 2 Corinthians 5 and focuses on Christ followers’ call to live on gospel mission as agents of reconciliation. You can watch her share the poem here.
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From the moment blurry eyes open
Our minds are flooded with the current of the day
To-dos- new and old left undone- crowd quickly in.
Our earthly tent seems both light enough to spring up around us wherever we go,
Yet heavy enough to obscure the Light and darken the stars of our heavenly home.
This world is a gift, these bodies the same, but life here is incomplete.
Ever since our first parents realized they needed clothes,
all of Creation has been waiting, groaning for our perfect, forever-home.
One day we will be covered in clothes that never fade—
spotless robes that we could never sew or earn, placed lovingly on us by our Savior King.
The One who laid aside his outer garment and wrapped the towel that would dry disciples’ feet,
laid aside his will and loved, even as they wrapped his raw shoulders in a mocking, purple cloak.
Our Jesus, who poured water into a basin and kneeling, looked up into the face of his betraying friend, would later look up to heaven into the face of his faithful Father,
water soon pouring from his spear-pierced side.
He loved his own to the end.
“He died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.”
No longer live for ourselves.
Our to-do lists are full of good and necessary things,
and we needn’t throw them out.
Yet, may scale-free eyes rightly see all things as part of God’s redemptive plan.
He came after us, rescued us!
May we never be hoarders of the costly gift so freely given.
Let us remember, brothers and sisters, that our Father is not done with his rescue mission.
He is still seeking and saving, and because he sovereignly said so, it requires you.
“If, then.” Two words that unequivocally reflect God’s infallible design.
If you are in Christ, then you are a new creation.
If you are a new creation, then the old you is done and gone and the new is here, now.
If you have been reconciled to God through Christ, then you are a missionary of reconciliation.
If God has given us the Spirit as a guarantee, then we are not alone on this mission!
If He has begun a good work for all of his creation, then he will faithfully see it through to the end.
The perfect God of the universe “making his appeal through” such imperfect people collides with logic.
Perhaps colliding hard enough to make us flee the scene all together.
“Surely not me,” we silently believe.
The great Liar whispers that we’re worse than other Christians—our past more broken, our current efforts more insufficient.
Or, if we’re in real danger, he whispers that we’re better.
Either way, his goal is to take our eyes off of Christ—our only source of righteousness.
He alone has given us life.
He alone has set our life’s true purpose.
He alone will accomplish this mission in and through us.
The old has passed away, Beloved; behold, the new has come!
Will you trust him? Will you take him at his word, even when it doesn’t make sense?
Will you cry out, “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief!”
Let’s push all our chips in.
Living on gospel mission isn’t always neat, easy, or comfortable.
It exposes our lack and our fear—fear of failure, fear of not being in control.
We often even struggle to know how.
But we are not alone. With each small step we have the Helper, and we have each other.
This gospel mission is hard, but beautiful.
It kills our idols and brings us to life.
It comes from our King. It’s only possible through him, and it’s all for him.
Jesus fed a sea of people with a few small loaves and fish.
He will use whatever’s in your hands.
The world is hungry.
Let’s invite them to the feast.