The Opening

Writing has always held great significance for me. I found in it an expression of my true self, even when I had no other expression. I struggled to speak of deep thoughts and emotions. Often, I had no awareness of them locked away deep inside, far from the eyes and ears of the world. Instead, I made myself a chameleon, one who could become whatever I though others wanted me to be. I gave up myself and took the nature of a rock refusing to feel and unable to connect.

It does not surprise me then, that God has made writing an instrument of my healing and transformation. At university, when I was brand new in my faith, an English professor introduced our class to journaling. Instantly, it became the space where I met with God. All of my entries were prayers, conversations with the Father. There, I learned to be real with Him in a way that no other person had ever experienced with me. In that space, I also began, on occasion, to write poetry. Like a key in a lock, my poems unbolted a door leading to places I never knew, places much in need of God’s healing touch.

This past weekend, I wrote a poem, after quite a period of poetical silence. I found it refreshing and life giving, a much needed breath of air. I share it with you now, if for no other reason, to give courage to others in need of the the grace and the freedom to write and express themselves. For many years (And, even sometimes now) I lived with the lie that my writing had no value and must be sacrificed to “more important endeavors.” Don’t believe the lie. God values the gifts He has given and delights when ever we use them.

 Open closed eyes and see
Images penned by Spirit
Unbar doors long guarded
Set innocent prisoners free

There in the distance, look! Behold!
Long awaited tones give rise
Colors bright, shining brilliance
Remembrance of old stories told.

Awaken heart, my soul arise
Long anticipated day
Let drum beat, let trumpet sound
Enter with grace, God's promised prize

Here I sit, alive, awake
Let thoughts run hot the trails
Unbridled, run, let come what may
Give birth to joy. Let stillness break

There is a path, a trodden way
With stones beset in line
Pass tree, pass fount, pass tangled vine
Where sun casts down lights brilliant ray

And far beyond the branches twined
Past hanging shades of green
Ripples cross 'bove depths unseen
Flow waters deep, waves unrefined

But, One who sees and knows all things
Of me, this still be true
Though waves run deep and dark and blue
Even frees my heart, my soul to sing.

Published by Mark Harris

Mark currently serves with East Mountain (www.eastmountain.tv) in Cape Town South Africa. He has a passion for helping leaders and communities experience intimacy with Christ and transformation through spiritual formation. He is also a certified spiritual director (www.cftg.life). Mark is Married to Marcie and has 2 sons, Dylan and Caleb.

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