The Only Life That Matters…

dallas

Tragedy & Unaccountability.
Boils the soul belly up and white.
A child’s hope becomes fear’s amputee
Insecurity aligns crosshairs of a gun sight.

Dare we be outraged?
Is violence forged by hate forgivable?

Our corruption can never be fixed.
Yet, the solution rests within tension.
Held together by a lamb in our midst,
Who offers peace and hope through redemption.

Dare we turn away?
Has arrogance won our hearts?

Truly the only life that matters,
Is one shared together in God,
‘Lest you expect hope from lives we’ve shattered.

By Chris Clody
7/10/16

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Cancer. Is that all you got?

There is nothing like a friend who ‘gets ya’ – …and so it was also with Kevin and his God. He had every reason to reject the maelstrom cancer always brings. Yet Kevin chose to hold that cup knowing his God of opposites came with sufficient grace. That cup was bitter, like swallowing broken glass, especially when he coughed. The chemo, what he delightfully called ‘Drano’…well, yea, that sucked. Still, he allowed me, and many others in where bitterness would have closed a door. He allowed us to walk with him, to touch his cross which he embraced with the very dignity God infused into him. Personally, it was a pleasure looking up and hugging this gentle bear of a man whose laugh could be heard for miles while his sincerity found soft and humble tones shared in honest. I am grateful he is free from pain, immobility, and a prison of shallow breaths. However, I cannot control my grief, but if I learned anything from my good friend, I don’t want to control it. Despite its unpredictable waves I will allow it to go as deep as it dares knowing the longsuffering leaves a transformative pearl. Only faith can reveal the silver lining of grief. For it is through this process towards death that the veil becomes thinner. We see time and time again if the unwanted ‘gift’ or opportunity one receives with grace deeply impacts and inspires “the more” just waiting in the hearts and souls surrounding that person. We are all cups of different sizes (and whether realized or not) overflowing with abundant blessings. But like Kevin’s Savior, he realized that his cup was also to be pierced to become a channel for grace and no longer concerned for holding onto his cup of comforts.
Like many brave cancer soldiers, they not only battle this beast but also keep fear from damaging the time their friends share together. The love bound within Kevin’s relationships was something to experience. So when I say he’s the type that really ‘gets ya’ – I mean it. He was a profound listener that taught us patience and humility with quiet nods of understanding as he pressed us to prattle on. I will miss his bear hugs of friendship most. I will miss looking him in the eye and saying, “You know I love you, right?” followed by his quiet nod and, “Me too, bro, me too.”

Kevin didn’t just got lemons and made lemonade…He smiled, laughed out loud, and made a freakin’ business out of it. Not one person left the presence of Kevin thirsty.

 

thHCWFRM1F

You ain’t heavy, bro.
For we’re bound by New Blood,
Yoked by an understandin’
Wrestling fear into the mud.

Never were you heavy,
Even when I felt goodbye,
Even when the beast progressed,
And heard of your final sigh.

“You know I love you, right?”
And that’ll never change,
No, you ain’t heavy, bro –
‘cause love crushes what grief remains.

See you soon.
C

Quiet Rescue

images3My friend is a gift.   A bucket of overflowing wisdom whose compassion is a knee jerk reaction. His love is wasteful and without regard for his needs.  God not only gave me a friend, but a mentor and a brother.  His love is active and searching as it is obedient and grateful.  His smile is one that offers a peace waiting before his words.  I believe through the love of God, his passion to offer calm and confident assurance to the hurting is like watching water rescue.  Shine on brother…shine on.

My Fall

falling_man

Within the depths I stumble,
A bottom I never thought I’d find…
Trapped within my solitude,
Wrapped in darkness and left feeling blind.

Faint echoes bounce from these walls,
Growing louder in my surrender,
Forgotten hope fills my soul,
Knitting shattered pieces together.

Reaching for a helpful hand,
Blindly following my brother’s voice,
Encouraged by promised hope,
I submit to Redemption’s choice.

Side by side we start to climb,
Rising from this bottomless despair,
Love has once again conquered,
My heart transforms and quickens in prayer.

dontgiveup

By Chris Clody 10/29/13

Is Redemption Enough?

…Or is the promise of the Gospel in need of miracles, mystics, a “Word” from God, speaking in tongues, and other lavish mysteries that find some purpose or place in faith really a necessity in advancing the unique promise of hope found in Jesus Christ?   The path to redemption is a choice and a perspective.  Although this promise that thunders from Calvary is freely offered, we must choose to accept it and what it entails.  Despite how today’s leaders continue to slice and dice their distinct flavor of Christian discipleship there can only be one road.  Before placing one foot in front of the other on this dusty path back to Calvary, it is imperative to encounter the man, the innocent victim, hanging at the cross or the focus of both our faith and endurance cannot survive.  Coming face to face with the brutalized body that stood in our place we fall sorrowfully silent in realizing what was necessary to set us free.  Here in the stillness of death, no miracles, no “Word” from God, no speaking in tongues, or other indefinable mysteries are necessary here less the knowledge of our need and the thick air holding the wisdom of God’s unmatched love.  This unexpected door to our redemption is ours to open if we so choose.  If an eternity of joy unspeakable awaits beyond this door of horrific contradiction, then surely before it must rest our fearlessness.   To clarify, it is not by my own heroic ability to press on but knowing that my march towards Calvary’s door will weather any fear of doubt that will surely buffet me.  Yes, the helps that surround me, both seen and unseen, will encourage and strengthen my gait but nothing will turn my gaze from my Jesus.  It is Isaiah (50:7) who says, “ For the Lord GOD will help Me; Therefore I will not be disgraced; Therefore I have set My face like a flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.”   Like the innocent victim before me, I will obey my marching orders.  It is the promise of redemption that beckons the soul and empowers the heart.  It is our real need of redemption that must be spoken in gentleness that will forever infuse a new song in discipled hearts for God.

Walk in Truth.

His Peace,

Chris

No Fear

 

Such Bittersweet emotions

Start to wash all over of me.

I stand before my Jesus,

Whose violent death sets me free,

…hangs silently from a tree.

 

Both joy and sorrow collide,

Redefining God’s great Love,

Unable to understand,

This gift I’m unworthy of

Paid in full by Heaven’s Dove.

 

Fearless now I stand in Christ.

My faith encased in concrete,

Freedom bought by shameless price,

I must march to God’s heartbeat.

 

©2011 by Chris Clody 7/6/11

 

What helps you focus on finishing the race