There Is an Ocean

Avila Beach, San Louis Obispo, California

Avila Beach, San Louis Obispo, California

There is an ocean

I’m standing on its shore

Without boundary or measure

After time and before


The waves lap my feet

And they call out to me

They speak of fathomless love

And undeserved mercy


I glance down at my grimy feet

And at my bloodstained hands

I’ve borne these wrongs for so long

Perhaps I should stay on the sand


What if the flood isn’t enough

What if the stains remain

How can I ever hope to be clean

Doubt weighs me down iron chains


But again lap the waves

Again beckons the flow

Again sings the flood

“Come, be washed pure as snow”


And the ocean waves

Are not a watery flood

The are scarlet red

The ocean is waves of blood


Can this blood heal my scars

Wash away every stain

Will I rise from the depths

Whole and sound again


Still the ocean calls

So I draw a deep breath

I walk down in the waves’ midst

And down to my death


For the flood washes me

Of all that is not clean

I died that day

No power—the past but a dream


But dear friend

It wasn’t the end

I live again


I am complete

No more do I sleep

Not glorified yet

But forever redeemed

So Peal the Bells

Mountain Sunrise

Sunday morning reflections…


Once more we give thanks

Once more we come

Once more we rejoice

For the work You’ve begun


Gathered again

At the rising of the sun

Voices in unison

To praise the Three in One


So peal the bells

“Come, come and partake

Christ accomplished what you could not

All the weight of your sin did take”


So rise believer

Rise up and approach

Draw nigh and kneel at your Savior’s feet

The sovereign, merciful, giver of hope

Across the Breach

Sunrise Over Mountains

Reviled, He did not revile

Wronged, He did no wrong

But offered Himself

On our behalf…

By His stripes we are healed.


The wrath I deserved

You bore on the cross;

My sins atoned–

Removed beyond thought.


East and West…

How far in between?

As far as my sins were

Removed when I was redeemed.


Deep chasm.


Far off from God,

In condemnation.


Breach impassable.

Bridge uncrossable.

But for Christ,

Hell had my soul.

Christ Our King

cross on manger

Babe in the straw

While Bethlehem sleeps

The Savior is born

Christ our King.


He has descended

Made Himself low

Garbed in our flesh

Yet still God alone.


O wondering shepherds

What do you see?

The Shepherd of us all

Our Lord, Christ the King?


Angels in chorus

Lift up their praise

“Glory to God in the highest”

Their voices raise.


There on the floor!

Mary, do you see?

There is a shadow cast

By somber tree.


There is a cross

There is a death

A sacrifice

To pay our debt.


When you gaze into the manger

What do your eyes there see?

A tiny babe, lying in straw

Or God made flesh, Christ our King?

Hold Fast


Press on for Christ

Spite of the enemy’s force

Plant yourself firm in the river

Stand strong whilst the waters course.


Falter not, fail not

Stand strong from day to day

Pray for hope, pray for strength

This world is only fading away.


Hold fast, weary heart

Stand strong and don’t give in

There is held a better prize

Endure for Christ and don’t give in.


Chin up, brace yourself

Raise your eyes to Christ

Square your shoulders, plant your feet

The grass withers, as do our lives.

Death is Not Death

Originally penned on January 1st, 2013, in honor of Glenn Wilkinson. Dedicated to Bill Reese. Shared in memory of Harry Russell, who went to be with the Lord today.

Red Sunset

Death is not death:

The grave is not the end;

We who are in Christ

will someday meet again.


Your eyes gently close;

You breathe your last;

Then you see glory—

all else has passed.


We mourn now you’ve left;

You walk here no more;

But death is not death—

You walk with our LORD.


Through all these tears

our souls are still glad;

You’ve risen to glory

where no heart is sad.


We look forward,

we eagerly wait

for when the LORD calls

or ‘tis end of days.


Death is not death:

The last page is done;

Some might think defeat—

We see a battle won.


Death is not death:

The clouds roll away;

All is clear as silver glass;

All dissolves into glorious day.


Farewell for now—

This is not the end.

We shall someday

meet again.

Remind Me Once Again

Forgiven… forgiven. Again comes the word. My heart, though drowned in doubt, falls back on this. Forgiven… forgiven. My every sin on Him was laid; He covered the cost–my debt He paid. Forgiven… forgiven. Soul, doubt this not. You have been covered by the Savior’s blood. Remember… remember. Forget this not, nor let your guilt overcome you. You are forgiven, forget it not. Remind yourself, when you are tempted to forget. Because of grace the price was paid, in mercy you were drawn… you have been forgiven. Grace and mercy–because of these you have hope. Because you rely not on your own strength, but on the strength of Christ alone.


Point me back to Christ

Remind me once again;

Let every day be a reminder

Of how He atoned for sin.


Remind me of the mercy

That on my head He bestowed;

When I was still unwilling

My Savior stooped down low.


Remind me of my sin

And my unworthiness;

Remind me of God’s sovereign choice

How He called me spite my sinfulness.


Point back to the cross

And to the precious blood

My Savior spilled, once for all time

For sinners by the Father loved.


Remind me of the love

That pulled me from hell’s grasp

And of my precious Redeemer

Who tenderly holds me fast.


Remind me of the grace

That saved this stubborn heart;

That forgave my iniquities

Full and complete, not just in part.


Remind me of the life

That from my Savior flows;

All who are cleansed beneath the flood

Death shall never know.


Remind me of the faithfulness

That forever will endure;

Christ my High Priest

Presents me to the Father as pure.


Point back to the throne

And to the mercy seat;

Where sits my Savior at God’s right hand

And intercedes for me.