Proving Your Faith

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I believe it is contradictory to try to prove faith.  Some go to great lengths to prove that what they believe is right. Endless studies and theological discourses are done trying to disprove everyone else. Some feel if they can disprove evolution, for example that they will have accomplished a great milestone for Creationism. Still others pick and choose proof texts to support their particular beliefs. For me, this proves nothing. The proof of your faith is in living it. If what you say does not match what you do then you have nothing to offer anyone.

Proof is in the living //not in the proving

Faith is not based on proof //rather on belief

Proof is not disproving others

It is living the faith you choose

For it is in living that we convince others

That our words/work is not in vain

Yet we try so hard to convince ourselves we are right

Is it our doubt // or feelings of superiority?

Few are brought to faith by details of theology

Rather by the life of One who has lived selflessly

Faith is not supported by disproving science…

Which is ever changing as knowledge increases

Faith is not proven by what cannot be proven //

Stories of the past or imaginations of the future…

Recorded to uplift and reassure the faithful

Having little to do with drawing others to accept your Truth

Faith is a mystery // believing what can’t be proven

Accepting God’s Love and Grace

Living in that light each day of your life

Loving God //Loving your neighbor //Serving others

Faith is based on Love … not on Proof

Your faith in action becomes

“The Word made Flesh”

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Rationalizing Vice

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Today we explore the seven deadly sins and the seven virtues (Vice and Virtue). Amaya challenged us to look inside ourselves and evaluate one of each. As I looked down the list of seven there was more than one I could have chosen. I decided to hit home and challenge myself with this one. These signs have appeared in welcoming yards across the country, since President Trump put limits on immigration.  Where do you stand,,, on the side of vice (Greed) or on the side of virtue (Charity)?

I must confess when I read the sign something inside me resisted

The Pharisee in me reared its ugly head // made me back away

Possessive greed required my allegiance // rejecting some who are different

Surprisingly, open arms and welcoming seemed foreign to my spirit

Questions arose: are they legal, are they dangerous, or perhaps the wrong color?

The story of our nation reveals

How quickly we took from welcoming native neighbors

Burning villages // killing them off // Relocating them to far away places

Out of sight // out of mind // the problem was now solved

We live here in luxury with guards, walls, and gates

Disinviting all who are different from us // closing eyes to the problem

Is this what it means to “Make America Great Again…”

Hedging ourselves in // using them to do our bidding

Or can we move from our vice to virtue with charity in our hearts

Saying,” No matter who you are // where you are from,,,

we are glad you’re our neighbor”

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Sign Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Summer Time Itchy

Porgy & Bess: Summertime

My apologies to Ella and Louis for taking liberties with their song. I was itching to try something different. Grace at d’Verse Poets Pub asked us to write a Quadrille of only 44 words using a form of the word itch. Since I grew up playing in a woods full of poison ivy, I was used to the summer itch between fingers and toes. Hope you sing along as you read my poem!!

Summer time and the livin’ is itchy

Poison ivy  // growin’ near by

Summer time and the livin’ is itchy

Scratch little pinky toes don’t you cry

Summer time and the livin’ is itchy

Little boys running // through a patch near by…

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Calamine Lotion Needed

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Album cover from Bing Search

News Politics and Truth

Three blind men and and elephant

Perhaps the truth you choose to believe
Depends on which side of the Elephant you stand
Some at the head and get whipped around by the trunk
Those who are left stand at the rear constantly shoveling
Those on the side see a vast nearsighted nothingness
But // beware of the feet //for they will stomp you flat
In the everchanging tide of strong divisive opinion
It is sometimes hard to tell left from right
Truth seems to be whatever we make it to be
This is nothing new // we’re always in a stew
A few short years ago it all depended on
Which side of the Donkey you stood on on
With very similar results
Only shoveled from those who were right.
We’re reminded daily of fake news being spread
So // how does one know truth from fiction // gossip from facts
The answer is in no way clear
For me it all seems to be a lot of ES…DS…and BS … and now TS
I don’t think social media is a friend of our society
Its aim is to distort, divide, keep us in fractured turmoil
For me // give me a ten-page newspaper with comics in the back
A Look or Life magazine with mostly photos and a few facts
Filter out the most important things and let the rest go
Let those in charge do their job // if not the next vote will show
There’s a world of mess out there that I don’t need to know

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Three Blind Men and an Elephant: baikesoukou.com

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I guess you can tell from this one my age is telling on me.

 

Eternal Sleep

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Fragile blooms reveal such striking beauty

Nature’s embellishment for green fields

With seeds yielding a mixed bag of healing and death

Petals of red hearts of black // growing wild and free

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Seeds to ease the pain // used for generations

Extractions and concentrates create powerful narcotics

Morphine // Heroin  // Codeine

Powerful pain relievers leading to addiction

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Blood red flowers mix with the red blood of the fallen that bloody day

Symbol of the men who died on Flander’s Field // resting in eternal sleep

Paper Poppies sold on the end of a wire on Veterans’ Day in November

Beauty grown wild all over the world

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 Photos: Dwight L. Roth

 

Down the Drain

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At the end of life our usefulness seems to get put on the shelf

Our limbs don’t always work as well as they once did

Inside // the heart still pumps round and round while we wait

Knowing our plowing days have ended and our decorative days are here

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Life is full of ups and downs that could leave us in a turmoil at the end

As the coals of life burn down some choose to drown their sadness

Others simply throw in the towel and give up // feeling, “What’s the use?”

Many grow bitter and make life difficult for all who care

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As I look back on my life, I see my brain as the drain that filters out the big stuff

Keeping the traumatic and the wonderful // letting the rest go right down the drain

Not sweating the small stuff // attempting to save some good to pass on down the line

I choose to not go gently  // rather to stay focused // letting creativity flow

Knowing that in the end most of who we are will go right on down the drain

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

 

Supermunk (Haiku)

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Supermunk pigs out

Bulging  cheeks with summer seeds

Bars can’t contain him

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Back to his dark nest

Storing seeds for winter’s cold

Supermunk climbs down

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Skinnymunk returns

Engaging stretched slinky

Slipping right inside

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  Sneaky guy reloads

Sunflower seeds food of choice

Never ending treat

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

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For another great read form Compost and Grace, check out stories of my dad. It will lift your spirits and scratch your nostalgic bone!!

https://uplandweb.wordpress.com/2018/06/19/stories-of-my-dad/

Miracle in Thailand

Thai boys in cave

The world watched the story of the Thai soccer players and their coach.  Lost in an underground cavern, water from Monsoon rains forced them in deeper and deeper to find high ground. Days later, when they were discovered by British Navy Seals in Scuba gear, their worries were not abated.  A long dangerous underwater rescue was necessary to bring them out. All were safely brought out and the world breathed a collective sigh and a prayer of thanks for the miracle just witnessed. This poem focuses on the initial entrapment.

Trapped in the Dark

Young boys huddled in the dark

Lose track of time as days go by

High ground becomes lower

Monsoon season feeds the flow.

With no way out …they wait //

Hope // and pray that help will come

Waiting // Waiting // Waiting

Batteries die leaving pitch blackness

Meditation helps relieve desperation

Thirst quenched from cave wall drippings

Food is gone // Black time silently ticks on

All that remains is the dripping sound of silence

Echoing through the endless cavern

Days of cold never ending night go on and on

Waiting // Waiting // Waiting

Talking ceases as they await their fate

A mirage of dim light appears in the depths

Must be hallucinations

No // it’s getting brighter

A scuba diver breaks the water surface

Hope is not lost!!

Now the scary part

Underwater rescue

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Photo from the French news agency on Edge.

If you would like to know the exact day to day timeline of events surrounding the rescue you can find them here:

http://www.businessinsider.com/thai-cave-rescue-timeline-how-it-unfolded-2018-7#wednesday-july-11-the-soccer-team-recovers-in-the-hospital-18

 

Looking Glass Falls

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Water flowing down

Never stopping to reflect

Leaping off the cliff

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Frank Tassone’s Haikai challenge this week is to write a poem about a water fall. I chose Looking Glass Falls, in the Pisgah National Forest of North Carolina. I took these photos when we visited there a couple of years ago.

Come join us at:   Frank Tassone’s #Haikai Challenge #41: waterfall

 

Leaves

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Leaves

Are we not all

But leaves in the stream

Whose lives begin

As bud on twig

 

Flourishing green

In the sunshine of life

We shine in spring rains

And wave joyfully in the wind

 

Some get devoured

By those who would

Consume their very being

Sapping strength stealing life

 

Others scorch

in the heat of drought

Twisting and curling

In dehydrated anguish

 

Many who make it

Add color as they age

All finally leaving the tree

To be gathered and burned

Or raked and composted

 

Some catch the wind

For one last hurrah

Landing by fence posts

Or floating downstream

Into the great unknown

 

But many //surrounded lie

Right where they fall

Blanketing the feet of family

As protection // nourishing spirits

For generations to come

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Photo: Dwight L. Roth