Saturday, February 21, 2009

Unanswered prayers?

I'm listening to a podcast sermon-type thing about "unanswered prayer" (from crosswalk), and it's driving me crazy. I don't have a problem with prayer being much more powerful when it's aligned with God's will and His plan; what I take issue with is the concept of "unanswered" prayer. God never leaves any prayer unanswered. I think what causes us to stumble over this is that we don't know what an answer is. God answers prayers in one of three ways: yes, no, or later. The reason some people think their prayers remain unanswered is that they don't hear the answer they want. They don't recognize a "no" as an answer to the prayer. And "later" is probably even worse--who wants to wait for God to answer a prayer? We want results NOW.

Sadly for us humans, God doesn't work that way. He's on an eternal schedule, not constrained by our deadlines and impatience. If I pray for a friend to be healed, but that friend remains sick, it's not that God ignored my prayer; it's that He said "no." If I pray for God to move a mountain for me, and it stays where it is, that doesn't mean that God hasn't answered, it means that he's either answered "no" or "later" (The secret for figuring out which? If there's no definitive answer, it's probably a "later".)

How do I know this? Aside from all the places in the Bible that talk about "waiting on God" (also here, here, here, here, and here, among others) and persevering in prayer, I've seen it in my own life. Any number of times, I've prayed for something for months (and occasionally years) without hearing back from God. Then--seemingly out of the blue--I'd get an answer that was beyond my wildest hopes.

So don't believe the nonsense about "unanswered" prayer! Maybe you just haven't gotten the answer you wanted. Just remember (this one's hard for me) God knows what He's doing, and he's smarter than us. Trust Him. Oh--and it's always worth the wait.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Some nonsense, just for fun!

I've written a few nonsense poems that I decided to share. I'm including each in a separate post to make it easier to read them individually. They've been hanging around for a while, and I haven't done anything else with them yet, so this seems like a good opportunity to "publish" them.

I had a lot of fun writing them, and I hope you enjoy reading them. Let me know what you think!

(And yes, this is how I'm using my linguistics degree. Useful, no?)

Ninny Nanny Nonny-sense

Wiggle waggle woggle wump
Fliggle flaggle floggle flump
Miggle maggle moggle mump
Ziggle zaggle zoggle zump!

Weezle wazzle wizzle warg
Feezle fazzle fizzle farg
Meezle mazzle mizzle marg
Zeezle zazzle zizzle zarg!

Widdle waddle wuddle wode
Fiddle faddle fuddle fode
Middle maddle muddle mode
Ziddle zaddle zuddle zode!

Iffle piffle tiffle tonk
Niffle diffle kiffle konk
Hiffle liffle ziffle zonk
Wiffle miffle biffle bonk!

Hiddy diddy biddy bud
Niddy middy ziddy zud
Piddy widdy fiddy fud
Kiddy jiddy giddy gud!

Wergle the Nergle

Wergle the nergle wanted to climb
To the top of the kergle of Miggledy Pime.
He waited for evening, as that is the time
When climbing is best at Miggledy Pime.
He got to the start of his kergley quest,
The bottom of climbing up to the Lerg nest.
For Lergs live way up on the zippedy-zest
Of tall kergle flondubs, above all the rest.
Wergle climbed up the high kergle kuzzo
And felt full of awe to see the nergles below.
From up on the Kergle, he saw them bestow
His evening climb triumph with a nergley glow.
he felt all a-flutter on seeing that sight
and knew he would always remember this night;
the night he found out that glowing was right
when all his friend nergles showed him their light.

Have you Heard of the Flerd

I'll post a picture of what I think a flerd looks like soon-kf

Have you heard of the flerd
Who lost track of his yerd?
(This particular flerd’s name was Jerd.)

He searched high
And low
And in-between
He looked far
And wide
But found not a bean.
Jerd asked for the help of his friends,
Merd and Serd,
Who enlisted the help of two more,
Zerd and Perd.
They looked and they looked,
These five flerdy friends.

They searched the whole world
From beginning to end.
Still they found not a sign
Of the yerd that was gone.
It was hiding—or lost—but no matter the cost
Jerd needed to find his yerd.
For without it, you see,
He couldn’t fliggameezee.
And a fleggameezeeless existence
Would just have no glee.
So Jerd and his flerd friends,
Merd, Serd, Zerd and Perd,
Continued the search for Jerd’s missing yerd.

“But what is a yerd?”
Did I hear you ask that?
Do you not learn of yerds in the place where you’re at?
Well, I promise to answer
Just what a yerd is,
But first we must check on
The flerds and their searches.
They still have not found it—
They exclaim, “Oh, confound it!
How could that yerd have left its flerd Jerd?
We must find it!
We must,
Or our quest is a bust.
For minus his yerd, our friend Jerd is half-clerd.”

So they continued to look
And to search
And to seek,
But of that yerd they discovered
Not one single peek.
At last they agreed, they must stop for the night,
And continue tomorrow on their flerd-finding fight.
But alas, still the next day,

And week


And year

The end of their quest still did not draw near.
They fin’ly admitted that they didn’t know
Just how to get that yerd to show.

So they went to the experts;
Jerd, Merd, Perd, Serd and Zerd
Consulted the ones
Who knew how to find yerds.
The yerd-finding experts in the world of the flerds
Knew at once where Jerd’s long-missing flerd would be found.

They said, “Go all the way back
To where you began.
Then go back even farther,
As far as you can.
Then you will recall
where you last saw your yerd.
As soon as you know it,
You must think very hard
Of just what your yerd is,
How it looks,
What it says.
Hold on to those thoughts
As you capture your yerd,
And keep them in mind
As you find your yerd-rhyme.
And then, my dear Jerd,
You will know at all times
Just where, how and when
To locate your yerd.”

And so Jerd and Merd, Perd, Serd, and Zerd
Went back to the place
Where Jerd lost his yerd.
All five of the flerds,
Minding the import of fliggameezee
Looked around, up, and down
Then did as the yerd-experts said to.
The flerds went one step
Farther back from here,
And Jerd, who all this time
Had been missing his yerd,
Said, “I see it! It’s here!
Right before where I left it
When I had it last year!”

It was true, there it was—
Barely glowing, the long-missing yerd.
It pulsed and grew brighter;
The nearer Jerd got,
The harder it glowed—
It was practically hot!
It flashed and Jerd smiled.
“It missed me too!”

The flerd friends all cheered,
And their yerds glew too.
Now all of the flerds
Had their yerds
In their hearts.
And that’s what a yerd is—
It glows in your heart.