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Forty Years

The time just goes by quickly
Like everyone says, dusk from dawn.
20 years here, 22 there.
The loves of my life are all gone.
All these years of embers,
Glowing at my feet it seems.
But never finding flame or fire
Or heat enough to kindle my dreams.

Years are swift, you don’t believe it. But you will someday
When your purest memories are blurry and you just guess.
Even about the love you said you’d never leave or hurt.
And it just fades away like all the rest.
All these years of embers,
Glowing at my feet it seems.
But never finding flame or fire
Or heat enough to kindle my dreams.

You finally get a hold of these profound conclusions
Of what’s important, 40 years too late.
If I could make it all different what would I change?
I’d love someone with everything and all of me, and never wait.
All these years of embers,
Glowing silently apart.
But never finding flame or fire
Or light enough to find my heart.

If I could Make it all different what would I change?

I have a lot of regrets, you build them up over time. About things which I have done that have hurt others. Thinking about this brought something to my mind, something all of us have thought of at one time or another I assume — “What would I give to change all of that?” The response in my head came back quickly, “Everything. I would give everything.” A moment passed, and then the quiet voice of God jumped into the conversations and said, “Exactly.”

I look back across my life and see times of radiant flames, and others of smokey ashes. But mostly I see embers. Embers that teased of the possibilities, that glowed with potential; that spoke of a might-have-been fire that only needed to be fanned and fed. A blaze of passion where I could have truly loved, and truly lived as I was created to be. Instead I have moments, occasions, occurrences. Fragments of the good I could have brought, rather than a continuum. Flames here and there, but turning into cinders because they burned alone.

In The Revelation of St. John 3:15-16 God says, “I know your deeds; you are neither cold nor hot. How I wish you were one or the other! So because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to vomit you out of My mouth!” There I was in the lifeless middle. I think most of the people I have hurt in my life never saw it coming, never thought I was living this way. But I knew, and God knew.

In that same chapter of Revelation, God says, “Those I love, I rebuke and discipline. Therefore be earnest and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in and dine with him, and he with Me. To the one who overcomes, I will grant the right to sit with Me on My throne, just as I overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”

Even after this lukewarm life, Jesus had one more act of patience before He just spit me out. Embers One is the story of how His love and grace touched my tepid life, and brought joy and forgiveness. In this past year of what most people would consider the worse of their life, I can truly say it was my best. No cliches, no church-lingo, no covering up wrongs. The wind of God’s Spirit blew across the embers. I am so thankful.