My Chapbook Collection of Christian Poetry and Poems about God is Now Available for Sale

Hello, everyone! I have recently published my first chapbook of Christian poems titled “A Voice in the Wilderness – A Chapbook of Poems about God”. This has been developed and polished over the past six months or so. I am happy with the final product and hope you find encouragement in the poems but also a validation that the spiritual life is not all sunshine and rainbows. We all struggle. We all have periods of questions and/or doubt. But it is the yearning that keeps us coming back for more and allows us to experience joy.

You can purchase either on Amazon or on my own bookstore (it is cheaper and has free shipping on my store) and is available on the Kindle and in paperback.

Amazon: Kindle Paperback

Inkspiration Books (my bookstore): Paperback

Thank you for your support!

Build Within Me A Foundation of Thanksgiving – A Poem of Praise to God

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Build Within Me A Foundation of Thanksgiving – A Poem of Praise to God

May your rays of righteousness
pierce through the clouds and shadows of my heart.

May my mind give way to your fruit –
take up your shears and prune these vines that ensnare me.

Give thanks, give praise to the tree of life,
whose branches stretch out into infinity’s depths.

Give thanks, give praise to the tree of life,
whose leaves cover and provide shelter from worldly strife.

May wisdom flow like a river, filling my well –
knowledge of you soothing my parched lips and restoring my soul.

May I not walk by the power of my own two feet,
but make the journey through life on my knees, yielding to your majesty.

If I find nothing to be grateful for, nothing to praise you for,
surely my eyes are closed like curtains to the light of morning.

If my ears do not hear your name praised throughout the forest,
surely I am deaf to the songs and melodies of mother nature.

Build within me a foundation of thanksgiving –
a cornerstone on which my heart and soul rests.

Build within me an unquenchable thirst to praise your name,
never ceasing to be marveled by the brilliance of your glory.

Still the river of desire that flows through the heart of man,
unceasingly paddling down torrential waters, never satisfied, never able to rest.

Still the winds of lust, of jealous breezes,
our noses consistently sniffing for scents trying to sense what we don’t have.

Let our hearts not beat for what we’re missing,
but become firmly grounded in the grace which we already have.

Let our hearts not beat for foolish wishes,
but boil over with thanksgiving for your endless bounty and be glad.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley

Everyday Miracles – A Poem About Finding God in Ordinary Things

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Everyday Miracles – A Poem About Finding God in Ordinary Things

The clamor of your wisdom claps
like a thousand hands in unison throughout the forest,
calling from every treetop,
and whispering within every breath the north wind blows.
Your wisdom can be found in the simplicity of a dew drop
and within the caw of a congregation of crows.

You are an invisible hand, always laboring,
opening and closing doors as you see fit –
not always on my time frame,
not always giving me access to the rooms I wish,
but often times I find ignorance is bliss.
For the paths I most yearn to walk down
you wall off, knowing they lead to my demise.

You are the wise King,
always leading, but serving unceasingly.
With each new day you bring,
I am astonished at your beauty –
as long as I make the time to open my eyes,
as long as my awareness is focused on you
and turned away from the desires of my mind.

Your miracles come in small packages,
constantly sent, but rarely opened.
I look for you in grandiose experiences,
but you keep gently tugging at my sleeve,
urging me to put on my leather gloves
and dig for you in the dirt of the garden.

If I’m not careful,
I can become oblivious to the everyday mystery –
the beauty of a daffodil,
the way sunlight rests upon my windowsill,
the spirit that speaks when my mind gets still,
and the non-coincidental meetings of strangers,
sharing the exact conversations I need to hear.

Open my eyes when they are blind to your majesty,
so that I may witness your glory
in every root, rock, river, and ravine.
May I read the love letters you’ve written
upon every stump I pass in the forest,
every deer that crosses my path,
and every squirrel that leaps from limb to limb.
May I marvel at your everyday miracles
and find your fingerprints upon every piece of evidence
in this case called life.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley


 

photo credit: Ontelaunee Creek Tributary (1) via photopin (license)

There’s Wisdom In Silence – A Poem of Contemplation

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There’s Wisdom In Silence – A Poem of Contemplation 

There’s wisdom in silence;
Silence breeds seeds of wisdom.
Knowledge pours in like an flowing pitcher
Of water into an empty basin
When the heart is humble and the mind is tranquil.
When the tongue is mute,
The ears of the heart can listen.

The quiet is filled with more noise
Than the roaring downtown street traffic
Until the mind is stilled and becomes clear
Like the glassy surface of a calm lake.
But yet, silence is not silent.
For beneath the still surface,
Depths of movement swirl in swift currents of contemplation.
Silt is swept away by the forces of freedom –
Detachment from worldly bonds and chains.

Wisdom speaks in silence,
For she waits patiently until the listener is humble
Before she opens her mouth.
She knows there is no sense in wasting her breath
On ears that are clogged with distractions.
I asked wisdom what I must do to receive her blessing,
And the Lord answered:

“I will fill your pockets with wisdom,
But first you must put on clean clothes.
Rags only soak up and retain the delusions
Of the ego, bound like a slave to his desires;
The foolish feed their flesh.
Shed your stained dresses –
Evidence of all your failures and messes –
And wear my clean, white garment.
Wisdom lies dormant until you can receive
And hear this teaching.
As painful as it may be to your prideful heart,
Man never gave birth to knowledge himself,
But simply became aware of it in my being.
All that you are seeing are either products of truth
Of fallacies formed by the ego
To justify remaining in the dark,
Traveling blind down the wide and easy path.
It is not my wrath you should fear,
But the seeds you are planting
And the grain you will reap.
Your house is maintained or profaned
By the company you keep.
Every action forces fate’s hand
To set a chain of events in motion.
Do not give claim to the foolish notion
That free beings can refuse reproof and disdain discipline
And merely move along merrily without repercussion.
You need not my punishment.
For you punish yourself each time you scoff at truth,
Slowly watering, unknowingly growing
The roots of destruction that will choke you from within.
Wickedness knows no other way
Than to breed pain, emptiness, death, and decay.
I will fill your pockets with wisdom,
But you must first strip off your ragged clothes.
Perfection only comes from those under my atoning garment.
But to wear it, you must face being exposed.
For it does not keep in secrets;
It does not allow your selfish heart to plot.
It is a daily reminder of your inadequacy
That when you are swept away within the currents of life
You have not the power to save yourself, but must cling to the rock.
Wisdom walks unceasingly,
Wandering through the crowded streets.
But few have eyes to see and ears to hear;
Few are the faces that she greets.
If you want her knowledge,
You must also accept her reproof.
But if you remain humble,
You shall surely taste the splendor of truth.”

There’s wisdom in silence,
But she is not loose, but haughty.
She does not strip off her secrets
Or share her bed to just anybody.
She desires the humble, the meek, and the mild
With hearts full of shame, begging to be reconciled.
Few dare to enter the gates of silence.
For they fear what their hearts will hear.
So they continue to ignore wisdom’s silent warning
And dig their own destruction year after year.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley


photo credit: The Moon Legend via photopin (license)

A Prayer of the Heart

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You, Oh Lord, are the wellspring of wisdom that is never empty and is always rising to the lips of those who are thirsty. When my worldly eyes go blind and walk towards the cliffs of destruction, you await to halt me – to reattach my spiritual blinders. Man walks by the heart, but is easily strayed from your path by the ways of deceit. But in the midst of chaos you never leave. You remain as a nagging, shouting whisper that beckons me to your presence. And when I come before you…all is revealed. My mistakes, my falters, the ways in which I have followed the desires of the heart and not the desires of the Lord.

The feelings of the heart feel good. That is why they are quick to lead us astray. It is man’s seductress who dresses up in skimpy clothes and asks to be joined. Who can resist? No one without ample prayer and counsel . The heart wants what it wants and will blind us by any means to get what it wants. But you, Oh Lord, are a God of Mercy; A God who waits for those who wander and a Shepherd anxiously waiting to gather your lost sheep and return them to the fold.

When I am led by my heart, stop me! Stall me in my tracks and weigh my intentions against your law. May you no longer let me stray without warning. Open my ears to the still, quiet voice that beckons to be heard. For your wellspring only flows wisdom and from wisdom, truth. Truth pulls back the shades and reveals the world and it’s people as they truly are. But most of all truth pierces my heart and turns me from my worldly pursuits, to your face.


photo credit: Sunrise (HDR) via photopin (license)

Guidance Through Prayer – A Christian Poem

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Guidance

Pave paths of love and humility
That lead to your feet –
Through scorching deserts and bitter winters
That I may become patient and meek.

May my woes and tears
Not be shed in vain,
But used as food for your seed,
Falling and nourishing like rain.

If the road I’m on stops abruptly
And boulders block my way,
May I not lean on my own understanding,
But remain patient and pray.

May I feast on wisdom and knowledge,
But save room for the dessert of faith.
For wisdom can guide you to the kingdom,
But it can’t unlock the gates.

Beneath an ocean of water,
I am but a grain of sand.
May I always remember who’s the potter
And who’s the man.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley

If you enjoyed this post, I would greatly appreciate it if you like, share, or comment on it. Follow my blog to receive notifications when new posts are published. You can find my other Christian poems or inspirational poems at https://alongthebarrenroad.com/category/poetry/


 

Photo Credit: Rodrigo_Soldon via Compfight cc

Prayer For Guidance – How To Make Hard Decisions and Choices

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There are no guarantees in life. And in a sense, I guess that’s what makes it so beautiful. What satisfaction and joy would come out of living if we already knew exactly how our lives would go?

But on the other side of the coin, hard decisions and choices can be downright scary and stressful because they have a direct impact on the outcome of our lives. A difficult choice you make today is one that you may still be living with 20 years from now.

Choices are not difficult when they are minor tasks such as what to have for lunch or what movie to see. But what about the real tough questions? They don’t ever seem to have any clear answers do they? There are no obvious answers or signs that point you to the road to success and happiness. We worry about choosing a college, picking a career, deciding for a job change, or who I should marry. The tough part is knowing that the choice has the power to impact the rest of your life.

I believe in today’s society, we are too quick to jump on the easy road or the one we perceive will bring us the most pleasure. Often times, these roads lead to self-destruction. The best way to make a tough decision is to talk it over with a counselor, and the best place to start is speaking to the Wonderful Counselor – Jesus Christ.

By using prayer for guidance, many times we are able to discover the right road without our will interjecting. After so much worrying, one night of prayer can give us a guidance as to what decision we should make.

But sometimes even prayer doesn’t provide all the answers. We’re stuck in between two paths and feel as if God is calling us to each one. It is in these moments that God often works through other people. Be mindful of other people’s comments and suggestions. Ask those closest to you to pray for the knowledge of what choice you are supposed to make. It’s important for the people you confide in to be believers and have your best interests at heart. You don’t want someone to pull you in the wrong direction for worldly reasons.

I’m also convinced that sometimes God has two plans picked out for us and puts us in the driver’s seat to determine the path we think we could serve best on. Sometimes nothing seems to give you the insight on which choice to make even after after hours of prayer and confiding in friends. Maybe it’s God allowing you to choose your own course. That is not a license to choose the path that will most serve your needs and desires, but the one where you can best serve others and best use the gifts God has blessed you with.

These major life decisions are tough. I’m going through one of them now and am struggling to find the right path. It is easy to get overwhelmed by confusion and fear, but rest assured God stands ready to advise us on our decisions. Regardless of whether we pick the right road or the wrong road, we can be confident that God will be there to help us if we call out to him. The first step is humbling ourselves and coming to God as lost sheep, unable to find our own way. Only then can he carry and lead us back home.


 

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A Servant’s Prayer

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Lord, stir my heart to seek.
Place my feet on the path where I may find.
Give me the strength to throw my life at your feet.
Allow me to leave my old desires behind.

Bathe me in riches of your wisdom.
May I keep me eyes open to the poor in need.
Let me walk as a servant for your kingdom
And not seek to reign as my own king.

Grant that I won’t succumb to confusion.
Help me accept whatever you’ve chosen for me.
Break down my walls of delusion.
May your abundant mercy set me free.

Let the Word feed my hunger.
Let the Living Water be my drink.
Let the Spirit move me to your great wonder.
Let your Son bestow his everlasting peace.

May the sunrise stir me to your blessing.
May the sunset deserve praise once more.
In faith, may I keep undressing
The ragged robes I once wore.

Shield me from all danger.
May your holy sword slice through all my fear.
Open my heart to the needy stranger.
Humble me as you did when you drew near.

Allow me to never seek to be the light,
But simply a witness to where it shines
And keep my mind always on the sight
Of Jesus Christ – Lord God Most High.


 

Photo Credit: Waiting For The Word via Compfight cc

A Prayer in the Face of Doubt

My Lord, why have you not heard my crying?
Is my voice not loud enough to reach your ears?
I sit in the pool of my own tear drops,
drowning in the loneliness of my fears.
I yearn for you. I yearn for freedom-
caged like some wild beast no matter where I go.
But your enemies…they’re free to roam.
They walk by their own willpower,
yet I can’t manage a crawl.
Why am I abandoned in the shade of your love,
why must I face all my journeys alone?
I longed as a child for answers
to the questions that haunted me, sought me out
day after day, believing that when I got older
the fog would burn away and truth would become clear.
Yet here I am Lord, all grown-up and still without answers.
In fact, with more questions and even the answers I had
as a child no longer satisfy, but breed more doubt.
I look out at the world. I still see you.
But you’re so far away.
Come back to me Lord and make your dwelling place in my heart.
Chase this darkness away- this doubt that grows like a cancer
and spreads its cells across my soul.
Pull the sun out from behind the clouds
and allow the rays of your grace and mercy to fall upon my face.

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