Open Call for Broken Unsophisticates, AKA the God-Loyal

If we want to be counted God-loyal, we must disappear into the moving fog which rises like steam over the houses and evaporates into high white clouds, burned up in blue and light.//

He reveals himself to humdrum unsophisticates.

Do you know something? Have something to offer?

Forget it.

He’s not interested

(at least, not what’s in you head, on your resume, or on your calendar.)

He’s after the raw heart,

The one open to unforced rhythms of grace.IMG_20160712_105349

Stop pushing your way through this life, trying to get known and noticed.

Don’t you hear the hollows of notoriety?

Do you feel the sting of being forgotten?


Our mark is not in being seen or appreciated.

We serve a God of the downtrodden and disrespected,

Of the broken and bashed up.

If we want to be counted God-loyal, we must disappear into the moving fog which rises like steam over the houses and evaporates into high white clouds, burned up in blue and light.IMG_20160730_174523


This is the life filled up with compassion for neighbors we don’t know,

exuberance for the child who chatters our ears off,

a stick to-it-ness that scintillates like ice melting together, a clump, in a cool glass of water

until it’s gone.IMG_20160826_101601

This is the conviction that holiness can be soaked up

From any person

We are challenged to truly see,

Every situation

In which our heart struggles and wants to leap ahead and yell, 

“Hey, look at me!”

Yes, even in our self-centered song, he says, “You can find me here.”

For he knows our insides and out, that we are always doing

What we don’t want to do.

He knows the floods and earthquakes we face, the fears we dread like plagues.

What was dark in all of us is made light, free, and easy,

When we lay what we want down and give ourselves away.Tweet This

He loves it when we disappear.

The Backstory

Over the years, the Bible I grew up with became boring, dead, and almost impossible to read. I got used to the language and I read it like a Whirpool manual. Imagine, putting your life together like a dishwasher. (It doesn’t work.) So I’ve been re-reading the Bible in The Message version. You know what happened? I didn’t find God in the words. He found me, there in relevant language.

God jolts me awake with phrases like unforced rhythms of grace and God-loyal.


Reading the Bible is hard, folks. I sat in church just this week and wondered how people who didn’t grow up under a steeple manage to stick with the Bible when the prevailing assumption many Christians have is: If you follow Jesus, then you must read the Bible regularly, and certainly, you must know what’s going on.

Really, the opposite is true. Most of us are as lost as geese without a V. We’re floundering. But we come to churches, groups, and blogs with hope that a word will snatch us out of our stupors.

I hope poetry will be an art form to help you hear what God might be saying to you in context of our culture and life, right where we long to be electrified with words that come alive and transform. 

Here are the scriptures that inspired this piece

Matthew 11:26-30

Proverbs 21:26

Proverbs 15:28

Five Minute Friday

This post is written with the Five Minute Friday folks: a weekly flash mob burst of creative writing on one word. This week was LOYAL. (// indicates the start and stop of five minutes. If you haven’t noticed, I have a hard time with the stopping part.)

Your Turn

What does God-loyal mean to you?

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August 26, 2016