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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Shopping (03/01/07)

TITLE: Life's Shopping List
By Elizabeth Baize


My door to future opened wide;
I stepped into the day.
With purpose and with confidence
I started on my way.

You see, within my palm I clasped
My shopping list for life.
To gain each written entry
I’d face pain, or war, or strife.

My list was headed by the word
That knocks upon the heart.
Next came a dose of sunshine
That would nevermore depart.

And yet, two things I needed still
To check my life fulfilled –
The honor and the praise of men
And all the gold I willed.

Yes, love and happiness combined
Were printed on my list.
But close behind came fame and wealth –
For these I did exist.

I searched and searched throughout the day,
But nothing could I find
That touched my list’s requirements
For the life I had in mind.

For when I thought true love had come
A void still filled my heart.
The happiness I thought would stay
Soon dimmed and did depart.

And after pain and toil I stood
With honor and with fame,
I found that they corroded to
The core of my own name.

And last of all I clung to hope
That wealth could be my trust.
But soon the gleam and sparkle
Crumbled into piles of rust.

My day was drawing to a close;
My confidence had flown.
I sank beside the beaten path
Forgotten and alone.

But then I raised my eyes to see
A figure drawing near.
He stopped when close beside me,
And his voice fell on my ear.

“What brings you here to this old road?”
I stretched to him my hand.
“You see this, Sir? It is my list
For life as I had planned.

He slipped the list out of my palm
And read each entry word.
Then raised his eyes and kindly spoke
As hope within me stirred.

“I’ve seen a list like this before,
And yet, I find it wanting.
To find true life you need My help;
Alone, you’ll find it daunting.

“Please Sir, I’ll follow anywhere!”
He gazed into my face.
“Will you allow some changes
That I offer by my grace?”

“Oh Lord,” I cried, “change everything!
My list I’ll leave behind
And search for each new entry
That You have to me assigned."

He smiled and slowly shook His head.
“My child, please understand
My list is a free gift to you.
Please take it from my hand.”

“This list records what I will give;
Not what you have to do.
If you accept my offer here,
Your life I will renew.”

“Yes, Lord.” My words were full of trust,
And wonder filled my soul
When I reached out and took the gift –
A list to make me whole.

An endless ribbon intertwined
Around my precious prize.
Eternal Life was woven
In the thread before my eyes.

The words upon the list were pure,
And with true life they glowed.
God’s Love reached out to fill my heart
Until it overflowed.

A ray of Joy no cloud could dim
Enveloped me in light;
Christ’s Righteousness replaced my rags
With robes of purest white.

I fell upon my knees with praise
To worship my great King.
My heart and soul united
As I raised my voice to sing.

But then I heard His gentle voice,
“Instead of seeking fame,
My child, go forth and serve because
You love Me and My name.”

“Your treasure rests in heaven where
No moth or thief can steal
What I prepare for those I love,
And one day will reveal.”

I rose my new life to begin
But suddenly I found
My precious list had disappeared –
Had gone without a sound.

“Oh Lord,” I cried, “where is my list?
From it I cannot part!”
“My child, forever now I have
Engraved it on your heart.”

Verses that apply to the poem:
Isaiah 61:10, Isaiah 64:6, Matt. 6:20, Eph. 2:8-9, Titus 3:5

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This article has been read 872 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Marilyn Schnepp 03/08/07
This delightful poem should be read more than once to grasp the full impact of the message this brings. Terrific job of rhyming - a poet extraordinar'...and very creative thinking! Nice job!
Verna Cole Mitchell 03/10/07
Outstanding poetry with wonderful meaning! Excellent throughout!
Jacquelyn Horne03/12/07
I liked it. I can't tell you why. I don't really know how to analyze poetry, although I write it sometimes. But anyway, I liked it.