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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Spring (the season) (07/23/09)

TITLE: Turn US again
By Tim Pickl
07/25/09


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Weary winter’s darkness covered my soul like sin;
Trapped in depression with no way out; no way in.
Daytime terrors, hiding from the Way of The Light;
I longed for the Son to go away, I longed for the night.

Chaos clouded my thoughts; I wasn’t thinking straight;
I refused to hear the truth and there was no debate!
I liked living in the victim pit: “Please feel sorry for me;
“There’s nothing wrong with me, it’s just a disease.”

I sat in the gloomy corner and pondered my awful fate,
I wondered, “Why in the world is there so much hate?”
“Why is there no love for such a wretch like me, God?
“Deep down, I just want to be wanted and loved…”

“Well, I’m waiting! I’m waiting for You to provide--
“If you don’t give me what I want I’ll run and hide!
“No answer? Then just go—get away from me now!
“I’ll cope with my disease all by myself somehow.”

A siren shrieked by, probably going to a gruesome fire;
Then I heard shouting, “Saul, soul: Get out of there!”
Axes pounded and more sirens blared loud in the night;
It was my house! Busting, bursting in came The Light.

Smoke engulfed my soul as I passed out on the floor;
Shouts of fired-up saints knocked down my door.
They dragged me from the flames of the pit I was in;
And after they prayed, I awakened and it was Spring.

“Good Morning, Brother Saul,” one said to me in love.
“What day is it?” I excitedly asked as I looked around.
He answered with a simple smile, “It’s your birthday.”
“I don’t understand…but I feel so wonderfully SAFE.”

The saints baptized me in the Name of Jesus Christ;
Why His Name, you ask? It’s simple—He paid the price!
Then something happened that splendid Spring morning;
I received the gift of the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues!

I heard birds singing, and smelled fresh flowers nearby--
“You have been born again, my friend, from on High!”
What a feeling! “I was once lost and dead in my sin;
But now I’m alive--born again like a flower in Spring!”

I leapt up, spun around, and fell down in the grass;
Then I laughed and laughed until all the tears passed.
I looked up and felt the Son shine warm on my face;
Thankfulness welled within my soul as I said, “Thanks…”

Then I heard a voice peacefully speak my name, “Saul.”
Then I heard it again on the edge of the wind, “Saul.”
“Yes? Who is it? Who is there? Can I help you?”
“Saul, my son, I have something for you to do.”

Immediately I knelt down in the presence of The Lord;
“Jesus, I’ll go wherever You need me to go in the world—“
“Stand. Look to the south, and tell me what you see.”
“I see a great State and within it a great city.”

“Go to that city, my son: I will lead you every day.”
“Thank You--Thank You Lord for showing me The Way.”
“Remember: I will never leave you, or forsake you.”
It was overwhelming; and I fainted and fell in the dew.

The saints surrounded and laid hands on me and prayed;
I was amazed at how much they cared and how long they stayed.
One revealed, “Brother Saul, The Lord has spoken to us, too.”
“He asked we would help you on your journey and see you through.”

Seven saints and I all got into a large, white passenger van;
Soon we were headed toward the city according to God’s plan.
We stopped for breakfast and met the Director of the Superdome;
We knew The Lord led us there and we made New Orleans our home.

+++

The Son rose bright on the third day of the Great Revival meetings;
Hundreds of curious people lined up to see what was happening!
I didn’t sleep the night before because they wanted me to speak;
And it was finally my time that Spring morning—I felt so weak—

The Superdome was overflowing with precious souls singing;
They were worshipping Jesus; many were dancing and clapping.
I slowly made my way up the steps to the pulpit and all stopped;
I whispered just one Word, “Jesus…” and His Holy Spirit dropped.

All of us fell down in the presence of The Master—weeping--
Then, as the Holy Spirit’s gentle breeze was sweeping:

We repented as a nation.



+++

Reference:
All scriptures are from the King James Version (KJV):
Turn us again, O LORD God of hosts, cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Psalm 80:19

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
John 14:6-7

Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
John 8:12

Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
Hebrews 13:5

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
James 1:17

There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?
Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?
Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?
Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.
If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?
And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:1-16

Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.
And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
Acts 2:36-41

He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.
And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism.
Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.
When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.
Acts 19:2-6

And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.
Revelation 21:23

Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it.
Isaiah 45:8

Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?
Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?
Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy reward.
Isaiah 58:6-8

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
2 Chronicles 7:14


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This article has been read 703 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Allen Stark07/30/09
Well written. You managed to capture in poetic prose what I went through for years.
Jeanne E Webster 08/03/09

Realistic prose..."a strange thing happened on the way to hell." Hallelujah for devoted Christians!

One critique: sometimes the last two lines of a verse rhyme and other times not.

Very intense; good read.
Mariane Holbrook08/03/09
My goodness, you gave us a lot to thing about! Your command of words, your deep conviction and your knowledge of Scripture came into play big time with this entry. Don't be surprised at a high placement.
Ada Nett08/04/09
Pretty intense. Lots to think about.
Loren T. Lowery08/05/09
A poetic twist on the conversion of Saul - wonderfully presented and creatively done. I'm not too certain of the need for the references, but then they are impressive and helpful for further research and substantiation.
Sara Harricharan 08/05/09
Wow. A lot of work certainly went into this piece-lots of stuff here to think about. Thanks for sharing!!
Pamela Kliewer08/05/09
Wow. This really resonated with me. Well done.
Mona Purvis08/05/09
Oh, if only we as a nation would turn back to God. If only we as Christians would stand firm on God's word.
If only "each one would reach one".
I believe you preached a sermon.
Mona