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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: This Side of Paradise (not about the book) (07/14/11)

TITLE: Looking Beyond What I See
By Carol Penhorwood


Looking Beyond What I See

It's certainly not as expected,
Living each day with pain,
Struggling to function, too weary to move,
Day after day just the same.

I thought I'd be active and busy,
Accomplishing feats in God's name,
Living and working in deed and in word,
Advancing the eternal flame.

My life is not as expected,
I don't feel productive, of worth,
How can I bring glory by what I don't do,
Just taking up space on this earth.

Have I not heard, have I not read,
It's not what I do that's of worth?
It's who I am in the midst of it all,
Who I represent since new birth.

He is the Potter, I am the clay,
My molding, His perfect design,
As long as I trust Him, He'll see I'm of use,
His purpose, His will, intertwine.

And so I lay pliant, dependent on Him,
Looking beyond what I see,
Trusting He'll make me a vessel of use,
Though it's not what I chose to be.

One day God's promised a future
Of wholeness, perfection, delight,
Beyond the conceivable, heaven will bring
The Master's, the Potter's, insight.

And so I lay pliant, dependent on Him,
Looking beyond what I see,
A harvest created, formed by His hand,
And not the expected debris.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

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This article has been read 666 times
Member Comments
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Verna Cole Mitchell 07/21/11
A poet who pens this beautifully is doing much more than just taking up space! May God give you grace to ease your pain, strength for every day, and calmness in the knowledge that He cares for you beyond what you can imagine. And may He continue to help you to write more wonderful poems to honor him.
Amica Joy07/22/11
This peom is such a blessing. So often our priorities are so wrong. We want to be God's tool and most of the time we'd like to be self-automated without his igniting hand. It is very hard to understand fully that it is the closeness to our Lord Jesus and our glad union with him that make the difference. We have nothing to gain because God's gift was given to us completely once we entered into that union with him in the first place. But we can come closer to Jesus every day. It is God relating to us in love rather than us relating to God with deeds. This poem points the way. Wonderful.
Laury Hubrich 07/23/11
Wow! I can so relate. Nicely written, like you saw into my heart and wrote what I wasn't able to ever put onto paper so eloquently.
Jim McWhinnie 07/24/11
No matter where it may place your poetic message ministered to my soul.

Thank you.

Tender and lovely.
Eliza Evans 07/24/11
This was hard to read and yet I have read it several times. It speaks.

Raw. Honest. Humbling. Everyone can relate to this on some level.

Beautifully written. Thank you so much for sharing.
Edy T Johnson 07/25/11
Whether we realize it yet, or not yet, we're all on this wilderness journey, this side of Paradise. Some of us are young and strong enough to still labor in the vinyard. The rest have been called to "come away and rest awhile" so the Lord can just enjoy our company! Your poetry vividly portrays the heart of one caught between the two (not unlike Mary and Martha!). You have a poet's heart!
Noel Mitaxa 07/27/11
I like how the hope invades the frustration that can build up on this side of Paradise. Well done.
Jeanne E Webster 03/04/12
Heart provoking, spirit seeking. Loved it..."If we could see beyond today, as God can see..."