Living Poetry

 In Blog, Pam Cavanaugh

In my early childhood, I could never compose poetry for classroom assignments. I really struggled in this area. I have a confession to make. My Mom wrote my poetry for me. This was so wrong. Kids, don’t follow this example.

But I love to read poetry. Years ago a dear friend in my church youth group gave me a big beautiful book of poems. I so cherished this book of poetry. The fact that someone can write from one’s heart and soul and transfer those thoughts to paper is amazing to me.

A few Sunday’s ago, my Pastor made this statement. “Our lives as Christians should be like a poem.” This statement has some powerful implications. Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are His workmanship.” (Greek poiema)

The English word poem is derived from this word. And Paul attaches God’s workmanship in our lives to His work of grace in verses 8 & 9. “For by grace you are saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.”

I married a very gifted man who has written many poems to me over the years. My sons have written poems to me expressing how they feel about their mother. And I have come to realize that although I cannot write poetry, by God’s grace, I can strive to live in order to be a poem for others to read. I can be the Mother my sons write about and the godly wife my husband conveys so well in his poems: to be faithful to put the Word of God into my life and live it out for His glory. It is a beautiful thought that I belong to Christ, and He has created me to be a poem for His glory. And in reality, my soul is all I have of any worth.

I am resolved I will not be
The dupe of things I touch and see;
These figured totals lie to me-
My soul is all I have.

Illusive cheats are goods and gold;
These chattels that I have and hold
Are preys of moth, and rust, and mold;
My soul is all I have.

A builder, I, but not with stone;
The self I am, nor flesh nor bone:
My house will ‘dure when stars are gone;
My soul is all I have.

For me to traffic with my soul
Would make me brother to the mole;
The whole world’s wealth were but a dole;
My soul is all I have.

I must take care I do not lean
T’ward what is sordid, false, or mean;
I must not touch the thing unclean;
My soul is all I have.

Oh, Keeper of the souls of men,
Keep mine for me from hurt or stain,
For, should it slip my hand – what then?
My soul is all I have!

Pam Cavanaugh

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