June 18, 2020

Halo's Glow, The 6-18-20

Who really cares?  Who understands
the rusty spikes through feet and hands?
His feet wore dust that turned to mud
when mixed with his own sweat and blood.

And then, of course, some thorns were found
and weaved into an ugly crown.
A painful mocking, gross insult
(but we know now the end result).

He was so sore and in such pain,
yet love for us would somehow gain.
He gave us life and gave us breath!
He saved us from eternal death!

Yes, we are just as bad as those
who we have judged His greatest foes.
Let's praise His work, His will, His way.
Let's bow and give Him thanks today.

But we pray for expedience
while He seeks our obedience.
Remember His beatitudes!
Let's change our selfish attitudes.

I tell you world, I can't compete
with such a love that's so complete.
There is no greater love than His
and that is what the greatest is.

From greatest love, for greatest foe,
can we not see from here below?
From greatest love, for greatest foe,
can we not see the halo's glow?

©2020 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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May 17, 2020

Beneath That Old Cross 5-17-20


Your grace draws me to You as I have observed.
But I linger often.  It's so undeserved.
Your love overwhelms me, Your strength holds me tight,
forgiveness is calling but guilt is my plight.

Effects of my sins are embossed in hard stone.
I cannot undo them.  I can't, not alone.
A carp without fin or a crow without wing,
I try as I might but can't fix anything.

Regret is the shadow I cannot outrun,
I cannot erase it or kill it with gun.
I cry for your blessings to shower as rain,
on those I have hurt so that peace they obtain.

Please hold them and guard them and don't let them fall,
then bless me with life that is pleasing to all.
Reminded of what I have put others through,
I so need forgiveness, but leave that to You.

I cry out in anguish.  I cry out in shame.
I know life is real and cry out Your name.
Please shake me of old days and don't let them kill
a future of loving and doing 'Your will'.

Immersed in contrition as life goes along,
dear Lord, please forgive me for all I've done wrong.
Your grace, so sufficient, Your love, so immense,
was proven at Cal'vry at Your great expense.

Please bury my burdens and bury my guilt,
beneath that old cross where Your blood had been spilt.
Remembering all You still do from above,
my tears now replace these mere words with my love.

©2020 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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April 25, 2020

Lonely Lost Poet 4-25-20


I wanted to write but saw forest instead
while loud chirping noises were filling my head.
"Go away!" the birds chirped, "We don't want you here!"
So off I had gone when I came across deer.

The deer were so startled, they ran away fast
with two frightened squirrels that also raced past.
The bugs and the butterflies seemed not to care.
I plopped myself down on a stump to prepare.

I heard eerie sounds when the wind pushed the trees,
but sounds were not words I could write down with ease.
The high-above limbs had creaked strangely in sway
and darkened surroundings in most frightful way.

My phrases eluded and wouldn't take shape
here stuck in this forest without an escape.
Distractions harassed me and it was not right.
Disturbed concentrations did not let me write.

This lost, lonely poet, still empty of rhyme,
gave way to the thought that it just wasn't time
to find my way out of this forest of words
still hearing the echo of mean heckling birds.

I thought, "I'll not bother to pen one today"
so wadded my paper and tossed it away.
The winds didn't care- in fact, nobody knew
it flew right across the small clearing from view.

As wind grew momentum, my work was in vain.
A chill ran down through me.  It started to rain.
Self-pity took over.  I drowned in my fears
as rain streaked my cheeks all commingled with tears.

"But wait!" I then jabbered, "just look what God's done!
He wrote this here poem and wrote it in fun."
I'll not be discouraged when mind has turned numb.
I'll not sit here sulking when words do not come.

The rain had stopped falling.  Clouds faded away.
And trees disappeared as I went on my way.
To tune out distractions and those noisy birds
just listen intently for God's greater words...

©2020 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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March 22, 2020

The Very Last Time 3-22-20


Could I be like mother?
Do I have the time?
She seemed so angelic
and seemed so sublime.

We all have to work
for days at a time.
A difficult struggle
and very hard climb.

I labored and slaved
through years of hard time.
I scratched for - and saved it,
but it was a crime.

And focused on God?  No.
I lost it in time.
His will, not my purpose,
but dollar and dime.

I now live for Jesus.
I give Him my time.
My life of enjoyment,
completed in rhyme.

But now I see mom for
the very last time.
I turn from her casket
...and hear the bell chime.

©2020 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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February 21, 2020

What the Little Do 2-20-20


A teeny ant thought he was great.
He watched those other ants.
Atop a tiny blade of grass
he bragged in tiny chants.

A tiny toad thought he was best,
believing others bad.
And there he sat day after day,
atop a lillypad.

A little bird thought he was tops
above the other nine.
And chirped, he proudly, ev'ry day
perched on a twisted vine.

And then a big ol' grizzly bear
shook earth while running by.
The ant, the toad and little bird -
in fear, they thought they'd die!

So off in fear, they scattered fast.
I laughed at all of them.
Their attitudes and downright pride
were things I would condemn.

Then as I looked around me too,
my wand'ring eyes did search.
Did I see other hypocrites
inside my little church?

A teeny, tiny, little man
was sitting in my pride.
And there I stayed day after day
and could have 'til I died.

But humbled was, when Jesus knocked
at my heart's wicked door.
His nail-scarred hands reached out to me
as I dropped to the floor.

Behind my blurry, tearfilled eyes
I knew I wasn't strong.
This teeny, tiny, little man
knew I was very wrong.

The ant, the toad and little bird
had learned their lesson too.
Do not think highly of yourself.
That's what the little do.

©2020 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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January 4, 2020

Bee 1 & Bee 2 ~ 1-4-20


Bee 2 was dear friends to Bee 1 that short summer.
They worked well together and made their work funner.

They spent their best days buzzing so closely over,
a flowering field of delicious green clover.

The sweet golden nectar that they were collecting
was their foremost duty while queen bee protecting.

In fun competition, sought who could be faster,
ignoring completely potential disaster.

For, far in the distance, they both were ignoring,
a big red machine that had made a loud roaring.

It leveled so quickly the clover and grasses,
but never once hit them on back and forth passes.

Yes, they noticed it passing, but paid it no heed -
and then were run over... with the good and the weed.

Bee 1 hurt so bad it put 2 in depression.
Did both bees survive it?  Now that was the question.

Though neither had noticed when that mower arrived,
Bee 1 didn't made it - while Bee 2 had survived.

It seems so unfair that disaster was lurking,
though both were so faithful and both were still working,

Bee 2 was so sad he cried teardrops of honey.
He thought God unfair!  All his days now not sunny.

We run life's race fast but, out of reach, that baton,
so how can we live when our best friend has passed on?

Is God so unfair when our work here is over?
Well, not to Bee 1 there in Heaven's sweet clover...

©2020 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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December 7, 2019

Shepherd's Christmas 12-7-19


We watched the flock, the sheep were still.
The night was calm right up until...
the sky lit up! An angel came!
It frightened us! We weren't the same.

Near Bethlehem, we were that night,
and frightened were, at such a sight.
Then when I stilled, an angel spoke,
with message clear, for all us folk.

I bring you tidings of great joy.
In manger hay, you'll find a boy.
In strips of cloth, in loving care,
in Bethlehem, you'll see Him there.

Inside a stable built with board,
you'll find your Savior, Christ the Lord.
Then suddenly we saw the most,
a multitude of Heavn'ly host!

I heard, when sky turned brightest,
"Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth, peace... toward men."
with echo heard again, again.

And then those words, "Don't be afraid..."
Go see the place where Christ is laid.
And so the time, we didn't waste.
We left right then.  We left in haste.

When we arrived, it was as told.
It was a sight worth more than gold.
The Inn was full, but He was kept
inside a stable as He slept.

I fell to knees near humble child.
Dear Mary saw and simply smiled.
The floor was straw on dirt and dust.
I thought it odd and so unjust.

Deserved He more, much more than this,
with crown of pearls and happiness.
A Savior good, for all to see.
A Savior great, should one day be.

In fact, this child should be a king
that rules over everything!
It saddens though, God had to give,
His only Son so I could live.

I felt much dampness on my face,
for this was now a sacred place.
Through tears of joy, they saw us pray.
We saw it all that Christmas Day.

©2019 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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November 28, 2019

Visions 11-28-19


Embossed into the reader's mind
are visions bright and full -
and colorful the places are
that hold us and then pull -
pull poems into vision that
create a special place -
a place of pure serenity,
a place we can't erase.

Those pleasant poems press in thoughts
of waterfalls and such.
And only poets can write scenes
that we can nearly touch.
With fragrance after morning dew,
in nature's quiet hush,
try stepping out on vision now
in grasses soft and lush.

Stroll out on clover so divine
it carries you beyond -
beyond these steps of mortal words
beside one little pond.
And as you walk on clover green
in visions you allow,
forget the words that brought you here
and live within them now.

The vast imagination here
can free you from your pains
of all that you've endured so far
in life's relentless rains.
Yet rain brings life to little seed
that grows a mighty tree.
So take the pains that you have now
to find more than you see.

If you can live inside these words
where poets often write -
you, too, can reach the waterfalls
and own this special sight.
Remember always nature's scenes
drawn by the poet's words
and let the visions bring you joy
and peace above all birds.

For God is in the spirit realm.
It's truly critical
to place yourself with Jesus now -
not in the physical.
And as you stroll, hum happy tune
and whistle for awhile.
Life sure is great when we all wear
that everlasting smile!

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
http://www.ganderpoems.org/

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November 17, 2019

Persevere 11-17-19


As the hurricanes and typhoons twirled,
I wish I could preach to the entire world.
...but I can't.

And standing so firm, like a giant red cedar,
I wish I could be a nation's great leader.
...but I can't.

Or be as appealing as double feature,
I wish I could be a big TV preacher.
...but I can't.

If I had two wishes, or even one choice,
I wish I could sing with a heavenly voice.
...but I can't.

If I could know Jesus, I mean really know Him,
I think I could write a masterful poem.
...but I can't.

I tell you the truth- that I am sincere,
but seems I can't make myself perfectly clear.
I sit here alone with but one lonely tear,
yet God says, go forth, you must persevere.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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November 9, 2019

Twilight Colors Beckon Me 11-9-19


"The sun is setting.  It's to be.
The twilight colors beckon me.
Was life complete?  Did I obey
my precious Lord, His will, His way?"

I've fallen short.  I've fallen far
from Heaven's heights to things that are.
The Judge is waiting for me now
as sweat escapes my weary brow.

I've eaten time.  Now it's my fate.
What can I change with empty plate?
There must be something I can do.
Is there no grace for me and you?

Can I "un-drink" the milk now soured?
Can I "un-eat" what I've devoured?
Can I go back to live His way,
some ninety years?  No, not one day.

But futile death?  Say it's not so!
Yes, Christ arose from here below!
Forgiven from this life I leave!
Eternal life- for I believe!

It doesn't change my sadness though.
Regret, I do, as tempest blow.
You youngsters have a life of time.
Please do God's Will and make it rhyme.

Please read your Bible, read it true.
Don't be like me, but be like you.
Don't store up treasures on your shelf
for one day you will say yourself,

"The sun is setting.  It's to be.
The twilight colors beckon me.
Was life complete?  Did I obey
my precious Lord, His will, His way?"

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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October 11, 2019

Of Sweet Joy 10-11-19


I traveled to see my mama today.
She needed to hear what I had to say.
But when I arrived, she was in deep prayer.
I had some good news I wanted to share.

My mama could talk the ears off the corn,
the ears off a rabbit since she was half-born.
And sometimes when I was trying to speak,
she'd cut me right off- for nearly a week.

But this time she had sad tears in her eyes.
Because of me I could only surmise.
I asked of her tears.  How bad could it be?
Then she shook her head.  It was about me.

I hurt my dear mom.  I hurt her a lot.
I wasn't a Christian and humble, was not.
The time had gone by, but now with good news,
I'm here for my mama to pay my last dues.

"I'm... sorry I... hurt... you for... so many years"
I said, as I stumbled with words through my tears.
But I have found Jesus.  My life turned around.
I bought my own Bible and it is profound!

Still tears held my mama.  She said not a word.
A small tiny sparrow was all that we heard.
Through tears, she then spoke, "I prayed for you boy -
and yes, I have tears, but now tears of sweet joy."

So together we cried.  So happy were we.
My eyes were a blur and I hardly could see.
But I felt much better when I saw her smile.
We conversed together for quite a long while.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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September 19, 2019

Live In Remembrance 9-19-19


So many just plan for tomorrow.
So many just live for today.
Yet I long to live in remembrance
to yesterday's mem'ries this way...

My father, in garage, would be working.
My mother, in kitchen, would bake.
Then I would take turns being with them,
and tried not to make a mistake.
I'd hold the light steady for father
while he reached down under the hood.
The cookie dough mom had me stirring,
from finger to tongue was so good.

They'd take me to church ev'ry Sunday.
I learned all the Bible had taught.
I learned that my soul needed saving
a soul that was already bought.
And Jesus had blessed me so dearly
with parents I didn't deserve.
I learned of their love and devotion
a love that I'd often observe.

Though father did not show emotion
and hugging was not ever done,
He would, at times, play some horseshoes
and never had I ever won.
Now one night while watching home movies,
I saw a lone tear on his eye.
I knew his emotions ran deeper
and in him was greater supply.

My mother was very kind-hearted.
She loved everyone that she met.
And when someone hurt her unfairly,
I never had seen her upset.
Yes, everyone loved my dear mother
and that's how a dear flower grows.
She passed away still helping children
and buried, the finest of rose.

My memories fade with the sunset,
as emptiness sets in again.
My life seems so terribly barren
as loneliness grips me within.
But some things I'll not be forgetting:
two faces that I'll always see,
two lives that I'll always remember,
two parents who loved thankless me.

So many just plan for tomorrow.
So many just live for today.
Yet I long to live in remembrance
to yesterday's mem'ries this way...

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
http://www.ganderpoems.org/

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August 10, 2019

Redneck Love 8-10-19


There in my driveway, we were stuck
when she jumped out of my old truck.
The rain had stopped but mud was deep.
I warned it wasn't wise to leap.

But yet she tried to get away.
Regret, she did, that awful day.
Escape, she tried.  It wasn't wise.
In mud was covered, toes to eyes!

Above the muffler noise and smoke,
I yelled out loud, "The handle's broke!"
Reach in the window. Be on guard -
then grab that handle, yank it hard!

What she had done just wasn't right.
When she got in, she looked a sight!
Still splattered full with greasy crud
she wiped her eyes, hands full of mud.

I threw a coat under a tire
a pair of heels, a purse and wire.
When revved, I did, to its extreme,
the muffler drowned her ev'ry scream.

She wouldn't push, so we got out.
I wished she wouldn't scream and shout.
Those heels just didn't match her suits
and she looked good in army boots.

Along our driveway next to broom,
from toilet tank, saw tulips bloom.
She plucked one quick when we trudged past.
I knew right then our love would last.

I also knew she'd like our shack
and showed our outhouse there in back.
I kept the freezer on the porch
and fried my eggs with my old torch.

The roof still leaks and I had plans
but fish were in the frying pans.
She dug for worms. She was a gem.
I brushed my teeth, all six of them.

I'm not so big, four hundred pounds.
She liked our home, all seven hounds.
"Now truck needs gas so here's a buck.
I'm glad we've met, it's your good luck.

"I need to weld a broken part."
then said, "Be patient, have a heart.
Go find my leather welding glove.
It sure is nice to be in love!

"All will be fine. You cannot leave.
You can't escape. Don't be naive.
A shotgun wedding is in store
for me and you. They've locked the door.

"My pop's the justice of the peace,
the preacher too, and the police.
Jus' take your time and think it through,
ignore the gun, then say, "I do"."
---
Now God does not force us like this.
He offers grace, not promised bliss.
So pray to God.  He has your back.
He proves His love that others lack.

It's such a blessing to be free
to serve Him always faithfully.
So don't hitch rides with sinful man,
but follow God, His will and plan.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
http://www.ganderpoems.org/

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July 12, 2019

Through Eternal Years 7-12-19


Our tears come in mass
when our loved ones pass.
Oh, why do our hearts sink so low?
Can we not accept
on ship they have stepped?
So sad, why are we, when they go?

Please don't shed your tears
on day ship appears
because death is destined to be.
Our lives are so short.
It'll soon be in port
for you, your dear spouse, or for me.

For young or for old
no ticket is sold.
It doesn't cost even a dime.
Once you get on board
you will see your Lord.
and judgement is final this time.

It moves us in haste
conveying to place
where Christians together will be.
On that distant shore
we'll love even more
than did on this side of the sea.

Tethered together,
never to sever,
we'll have much more love to employ.
Through eternal years
come many more tears,
but they will be tears of sweet joy.

And they'll create seas
much greater than these,
with beauty we can't comprehend.
That shore we will see
and love there will be
with Jesus, our Savior and Friend.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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June 6, 2019

His Eyes 6-6-19


The multitude
was not subdued
with Jesus on display.
So I pushed near,
to better hear
what they all had to say.

It was his task
that Pilate ask,
Are You King of the Jews?
With Jesus mute
there was dispute
and so the crowd would choose.

Barabbas won,
so on the run
good Peter tried to hide.
The time was grim
when asked of him,
but three times he denied.

Now at the cross
was greater loss
with torture and with pain.
From crown of thorn
to nails and scorn,
would someone please explain?

Though not His fault,
they would not halt.
Was this unstoppable?
I called His name
so I could blame
the one responsible.

Above the din
I asked again,
"Oh, whose sin it could be?"
Through blood and sweat
I won't forget
when His eyes turned to me.

©2019 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

---

So then, of course,
in full remorse
confessed my ev'ry sin.
Through sacrifice
He paid my price
and now I'm born again!

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May 11, 2019

Like Humble Cloud 5-11-19


From breezes in the summer heat,
I saw the ripples swell, retreat.
Framed in by lily pad and reed
it bragged a pretty sight indeed.

I gazed upon reflection's scene
and never questioned what I'd seen.
On water's face, a cloud of white
would bend and twist as in a fight.

In clear reflection on the lake
I saw that cloud.  It wasn't fake.
And with my eyes, I had believed.
But I was wrong.  I was deceived.

Reflection's great deceptions are
mere perceptions, fake, bizarre.
I never saw a single cloud
'cept what reflection had allowed.

As I stared down at water's edge,
there was no cloud there, I alleged.
Then I looked up in reverence
and found the real evidence.

Deceived?  Oh yes!  I felt alone,
so in a rage threw heavy stone.
I saw that stone and water crash.
It killed reflection with a splash!

Do not look down.  It isn't right
to be deceived by pretty sight.
Deception's lie?  You're all alone.
No!  Make a splash with heavy stone.

I now see God a diff'rent way
when I see nature day to day.
Instead of lie's reflection here,
I now look up and see it clear.

And clearly seen, it seems unfair
that there's no boast or bragging there.
That cloud continued 'cross the sky.
It knew not where, nor how, nor why.

As God created it to be,
it simply was- as you and me.
It floated by in slow decrease
and humbly faded off in peace.

In quiet peace as it's allowed,
I'll always live like humble cloud.
I hover o'er deception's waves
and see each splash as Jesus saves.

Reflections you can always see,
but in His image, I will be -
that humble cloud, that real thing,
up here with God, my Lord and King.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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April 17, 2019

A Quiet Little Lamb 4-17-19


I'm not a goat, I'm not a Ram,
I'm just a quiet little lamb.
I speak for other lambs like me
who we don't hear and we don't see.

So many tortured and abused,
some aborted or simply used.
We all are lost among the tall
behind the shadow's darkened wall.

We're lost in thickets sharp with thorns,
with those tall demons without horns.
They say, "Please smile and go to bed"
but tears run down my cheeks instead.

From other lambs with reddened eyes,
I hear more screams and hear their cries.
A Shepherd passed the goat and ram
and in a thicket, found this lamb.

I pray, "Dear Jesus, help the lost.
the least of these who pay the cost.
Among the thickets, you will find
more lambs like me.  You are so kind.

I'm thankful, Lord, you hear and see
and know there's many more like me.
Please stop the tall who have become
the demons for each little one.

I'm not a goat, I'm not a Ram,
I'm just a quiet little lamb.
I speak for other lambs like me
who we don't hear and we don't see.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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March 23, 2019

Understand the Ties 3-23-19


When someone is so nice to you that tears come to your eyes,
how often do we think of them and understand the ties?

A mere "thank you" is not enough, nor is a pretty card -
and smiles and hugs?  They too fall short as inch does to a yard.

When someone acts unselfishly and goes the extra mile,
so priceless are the friendships of the loyal caring smile.

And also true, when life surrenders full and total loss,
that everything falls ever short when viewing full, the cross.

When someone dies for what we've done, it's something to behold.
His precious, loving, selfless act is worth much more than gold.

When someone is so nice to you that tears come to your eyes,
how often do we think of Christ and understand the ties?

©2019 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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February 23, 2019

Through Winds in Chime 2-23-19


Through life's tough test I did my best.
Some thought it odd I followed God,
but in His footsteps I found joy.

Please don't destroy, but do employ
the love of Christ and sacrifice -
for one day you will follow me.

In my steps be, just wait and see.
Your times are cast in ages past
in places that no longer thrill.

For it's God's will that waters still,
as deaths relate to Heaven's gate.
The case for all here by and by.

So do not cry or say good-bye.
For Heaven lives and Heaven gives!
So wonderful!  Believe me now.

There is no cow, nor ox nor sow.
No money lend, no work or end
and God's not penned His final rhyme.

For there's no time through winds in chime
o'er meadows green, where it's serene,
at that great place I've come to rest.
---
Through life's tough test, I did my best.
Some thought it odd I followed God,
but in His footsteps I found joy.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
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February 2, 2019

The Filthy Man 2-2-19


I was the only usher here
inside our little church.
The sermon was just starting and
for truth, we'd always search.

Now everything was normal there
right up to and until,
the door creaked slowly open and
we all grew very still.

In pastor's long mid-sentence, the
strange silence first began,
for standing in the doorway was
a poor and filthy man.

Appeared, he did, atrocious there
and homeless quite awhile,
with clothes severely tattered, but
I staged a phony smile.

Now everyone had noticed him -
and not just quite a few.
so ushered him, I quickly to,
the end of nearest pew.

As if there were a final drop
of coffee in each cup,
all heads were tipped a-way, way back
with noses sticking up.

Now pride was quite a problem back
since Adam and since Eve
and even today's Christians who
may claim that they believe.

Continued then, the pastor did
and when was said and done,
we wanted to leave quickly but
the nervousness begun.

It happened, as you may have guessed,
the filthy man had stood.
He then walked down the empty aisle.
It didn't look too good.

Each member there stood silent and
embarrassed, froze, aghast -
for all eyes were upon him as
the filthy man walked past.

Not knowing what to expect next
with pastor silent too,
all time came to a stand still as
he walked past ev'ry pew.

Right to the front of church he walked
when there he seemed to freeze.
A moment later just collapsed...
right down on dirty knees.

The congregation was so stunned
as he confessed it all.
His prayer was for repentance and
to God we heard him call.

Now no one spoke and no one moved
until a small girl came -
and knelt down right beside him there.
Then all was not the same.

An old man also quickly came
and asked forgiveness too.
And even I came to the front
with others just like you.

Now maybe love had tugged our hearts,
or it was by design -
but seen, a single dry eye?  No,
and those included mine.

It wasn't long before we all -
the children, women, men -
all us who held our noses high,
became humbled again.

It took a poor and filthy man
to open up our eyes
and wash our filthy hearts again
with humble, humble cries.

©2019 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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