“My God, My God
why have You forsaken Me”,
the Bible answers Jesus cry
for us for us to free.

Sin is behaving like we’re God,
salvation is God substituting Himself for “man”,
justice requires a price be paid
for “man” to start fresh again.

So the Father had a plan,
let a sinless man pay for our mistakes,
thus the sinless man must be loving
to substitute Himself, “man’s” payment make.

So the Father sent His Son,
His plan now plain to see,
Jesus kept the law for us,
“man” nailed Him to the tree.

But the grave just couldn’t hold Him,
after all He is the Father’s Son,
neither the cross nor cave could bar Him,
our eternal destiny His love had won.

Mason Swinney

Special thinks to John Stott and Timothy Keller

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The King

Jesus, the Good Shepherd Who saves us
and guides us along life’s scary maze;
He’s our Savior, our Redeemer,
He’s the Light’n these ever darkening days.

It’s Him shining brightly, our beacon ahead
He’s the way, truth, the life;
He’s the vine that sustains us,
He’s the Husband, we’re the wife.

He’s the hope of the nations,
the resurrection and the door;
He’s the God-man from heaven
He’s all that and much more.

He’s The Word become flesh
the lamb of God that still roars;
He’s the lion of Judah,
the God who heals and restores.

His own tried to stone Him
for not finishing what Joshua and David began;
they wanted a world-conquering savior
not’a suffering one and certainly not a lamb.

He didn’t meet their expectations,
though common sense told ’em how absurb
but common sense not the Pharisee’s strong suit,
they kicked the universe’s Creator and Savior to the curb.

They staged a mock trial
then nailed Him to a beam,
sin and death righteously defeated
and sinful man at last redeemed.

He’s every stories happy ending,
He orchestrated how and when each began.
He’s the Alpha and Omega,
the beginning and the end.

Every knee will bow before Him
all earthly powers genuflect;
He rides the regal white stallion,
He’s the Prefect of prefects.

The perfect representation of the Father,
One in essence, equal in every way,
yet perfectly submits to the Father
whom He always seamlessly obeys.

He’s unequaled in every detail,
completely God yet fully man;
He holds the keys to death and hades
He’s the one and only great I AM!

Mason Swinney

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Rustication, Passing Through Eden

What’s it about country living
that appeals to us so much;
is it the pace or the view,
perhaps the memories that draws each of us.

The perfect Christmas or perfect Easter,
reminders of the memories we crave,
but they really can’t be actualized
they’re longings man is powerless to recreate.

Subconsciously we sense we’re homeless
the “Gardens” where we’re meant to be,
even though we’re not walking with Jesus
out among the beautiful flowers, empowering trees.

We’re all homesick for the “Garden”
though the recollections are just a glimpse,
often projected onto our personal memories,
warm and cozy, full of bliss.

What was it like in the old days
when your small community was your world?
The world’s problems arriving n’the Sunday paper,
you’d read about ’em but hardly stirred.

Why are old memories so often pleasant,
fact or fiction, spiritually imbued,
memories unencumbered, bad times forgotten,
they become our memory banks magnetic north.

Fear not, the refrain often repeated
by Jesus, God’s only begotten Son,
was it because fear’s universal
and we deal with it as it comes.

The extent of darkness is determined
by the degree that light fails to persist;
and our drawing near to Jesus
the Son of Man just can’t resist.

Just as the whale changed Jonah’s scenery,
so love swallows up our fears
and God uses rustication
to help us see that peace is near.

For God so loved the world
that He sacrificed his only Son;
good news for all believers
knowing love has conquered, love has won.

Perhaps a better magnetic north to fall back on
is where we’ll reside when we leave this fallen world,
the place where Jesus is building each our mansions
and love will rule and reign forevermore.

That’s a truth that’s worth remembering,
a hope with legs, a certainty
and when your minds fixed on God’s glory
worldly cares just disappear.

Mason Swinney

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Seeing Is Not Necessarily Believing

The major difference between Christians and the world is Christians see and experience life through eyes of faith and the world experiences life through their senses, what they can see, hear, smell, touch, taste. God is a spirit and can’t be seen with just our eyes and Jesus is the divine-human bridge between God and the world we live in. Jesus truly is The Way.

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Lies, Lies and More Lies

We are all so self-deluded,
we think we know what’s right,
it seems we’re bred believing
more toys will make us all right.

We devote our lives to making money
all else takes second place,
then wake up one day to discover
our focus’ been badly misplaced.

Looking back the answer was obvious
if we’d a stopped and thought it through
but we got so busy earning a living
that our thinking got befuddled, askew.

We bought what the world was selling
and wanted to be like everyone,
it takes courage to be your own person
and walk to the beat of your drum.

Perhaps the moral of the story
is those that laugh last laugh loudest,
more toys won’t bring you pleasure,
toys are what kids cry to get.

So the choices are really quite simple
grow up and think like a man,
living like spoiled little children
leaves us behaving like only kids can.

Let’s remember Satan crawls on his belly,
the Sovereign Ruler took away his legs,
and your vantage point isn’t good when you’re prostrate
and living with snakes in the dregs.

And God gives second chances,
and this world we’re just passing through,
eternity lasts forever
so let’s start thinking anew.

The key to not being deluded
is knowing what’s true, what’s not
then applying truth to your behavior
and being amazed at the freedom you got!

Mason Swinney

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Have you ever stopped to consider
what heaven must be like;
knowing Jesus is there constructing,
our eternal homes in paradise?

It’s hard to get our minds around,
Jesus building mansions for us all,
more stupendous than our wildest dreams,
and He’s doing it for all His called.

He who spoke the world into existence
in just six amazing days,
its beauty beyond comprehension,
but the fall got it locked away.

Yet the mansions He is building
have taken much longer to construct
their magnificance more amazing
and He’s doing it just for us.

Their beauty coruscatingly awesome,
rainbow colored, streets of gold;
people clustered about like flowers,
and not a one of them is old.

Imagine eternal presents,
in heaven all things are new;
perfect peace each person’s temperament,
gardens and vineyards all abloom.

Agape love drives our relationships,
it’s like earth without the sin;
night no longer happens,
our jobs joyfully serving Him!

Giant pearls the majestic gateways
diamonds sparkle on the beaches,
the fruit of the spirit our daily nectar
refreshing the lives of those He teaches.

The pool of Salome is there for praising,
His love everywhere resounds,
love has swallowed up faith and hoping
and Jesus’ glory surrounds, abounds.

Does your vision improve in heaven,
do you have kaleidoscope eyes,
seeing things multi-dimensionally
the colors bright, they seem alive;

it’s like they’re animated,
dancing and singing all about,
feelings of wonder, exhilaration,
felicitations whispered all throughout.

Like the garden of Eden,
God’s gift to all mankind,
though we didn’t get to see it,
the snake messed up their minds.

Imagine all the trees and flowers 
and friendly creatures that you’d see
a replica of heaven,
even the weeds appeared pristine.

Human words can’t describe it
the proper adjectives don’t exist,
there’s no noun that captures its grandeur
or the splendor of its bliss.

But its beauty sadly tarnished
by the fall, that cursed sin,
but heaven, years in the making
hasn’t deteriorated one tiny bit.

Our eyes are so amazing how they
search and illuminate what they see;
our spiritual eyes more discerning,
seeing by faith what’s soon to be.

Include some transcendant imagination,
the type that sees what dreams can be;
add to that some wishful thinking
about a perfect earth, eternity;

and you catch a glimpse of heaven
but 2 things need to be factored in,
God’s thoughts are light years beyond ours,
and His creative genius we can’t comprehend.

Mason Swinney

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Killer Words

How often this past week have you used the word “hate” when discussing a controversial or contentious issue? I’ve noted in my own comments of late that I’ve used the hate word a whole lot more often than I should. Now granted I really don’t hate the other side but use the word to describe the degree of dislike I have for them and/or their issues. For example, I’m an American so I hate the Russians; I’m a Cardinal fan so I hate the Cubs; I’m a conservative so I hate the liberals. I don’t really hate any of these groups of people but I’ve gotten so undisciplined with my speech that I carelessly throw the “H” word around far more than is appropriate and definitely far more than I should. 

Lest we forget, words are powerful. God “spoke” the world into existence and we are made in his image and while we humans’ words aren’t anywhere near that powerful, our words still have the power to heal or to divide; bring people together or drive them apart; express love or express hatred; bring peace or bring tension. Perhaps we all need to stop using the “H” word when talking about the other side in any discussion. 

I have to wonder how much the hate filled rhetoric that’s so prevalent in our everyday conversations and on the airwaves and social media and used by politicians, talking heads, reporters, celebrities, sports figures and every day Americans had to do with encouraging the crackpot that tried to kill a number of Republicans at the baseball diamond in Alexandria, Virginia this past week? Words do have consequences and hate words do cause hatred and this week it almost caused the death of 5 people simply trying to practice for a baseball game.

Perhaps it’s time for all of us to stop, think, and speak carefully.

Mason Swinney

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