Ironing Board Lessons #2

Mom’s life lessons on family

There in the basement, her iron in her hand, my mother was teaching on life to this man
Contentment is peaceful, no strife in your way, you simply relax and enjoy your day
Your marriage is teamwork, you trust in your spouse, and while they’re away, you’re at work keeping house
You’re in need of nothing, your wants are supplied, you trust in the Lord for all things beside
Life’s little pleasures are all around you, if you strive too much, you’ll miss out on them too
Simple is better, slower is best, contentment is cultivated while you’re at rest
Time that you spend with your family is rich, don’t miss it for nothing, don’t take the bait switch
The job and home life are balanced, you see, for raising up children the way they should be
His contribution is to work at his job, dads will provide through their labor of love
Habits of goodness, our citizenship, we knew better than to give any lip
The mother’s love labor is here in her nest, where she teaches us the things that are blest
Molding our character, making us good, even if we unwillingly would
Now fully trained, thus all became we, what was often referred to as a family

By Justin Ogden
Copyright February 1, 2016


Ironing Board Lessons #4

Mom’s life lessons on God’s providence

To boys, a rock is just a thing, sometimes we try to make it zing
Or drop it in a water pond, or in our pocket, will abscond
Or toss it at a distant tree, it’s lots of fun for you and me
Sometimes ideas just percolate, and good or bad, they seem like fate
Let’s steal some ice cream from the fridge, let’s drop a rock from off the bridge
Let’s do the things that sound like fun, if trouble comes, then we’ll just run

Mom’s dear daughter got her way, to ride up in the front today
Beside her mom who loved her so, and often smiled and told her, though
Her brothers on her oft would turn, and her forgiveness they must earn
For treating her with such disdain, and causing her such endless pain
A mother’s work, it’s often said, wake up the kids, get washed and fed
So off to church we’re going now, perhaps things will go smoothly, POW!

No warning, lesson learned to late, no chance to stop, to extricate
That wasn’t what we meant to do, ‘twas just for fun, we thought it true
The stone we dropped from our hand here, it broke the glass by Mother’s dear
As falling things accelerate, it made the sound that we both hate
We knew then that we would get caught, our aim is better than we thought
From now on, rocks stay in the pond, of cars and bridges we’re not fond

The tiny specks of shining light, flew from the hole up on the right
And they traversed the open space, between the windshield and her face
As I considered who’s at fault, Mom brought the car to a quick halt
Expecting to hear cries and fear, she turned to see my sister dear
Then their eyes met and Mother wept, the glass from her eyes had been kept
Thankful, looking to the skies, that angels covered both her eyes

God’s present with us every day, though we don’t sense or see His way
Life changing things can happen quick, and lessons that we learn will stick
God’s not a genie that we call, but He protects His children, all
He does not keep them from all pain, but He will maximize their gain
Be with them through their sorrows deep, and in His fold will safely keep
Those who trust can safely dare, to follow their God anywhere

By Justin Ogden
Copyright March 3, 2018

Ironing Board Lessons #3

Mom’s life lessons from the kitchen

There are two trays of cookies baking in the oven
I can see them through the glass, and I know I’m gonna love ‘em
Mom stands there grinning while she’s working at the sink
And then while I’m staring in, she asks me, “What ‘cha think?”
I ask her what she’s making, and she says it’s birthday cake
Hope I can sneak a taste, ‘cause it smells good, for heaven’s sake
The beaters spin, the bowl, it turns, ingredients pour in
Each measured to exactness, in their needed order, then
It lays upon the batter, just like snow upon the ground
It doesn’t seem to do much, it just goes round and round
Surprised was I, it did not mix, for it was a mixing bowl
Mom said the beaters were required the make the batter whole
The cake would just not taste the same, unless it’s all mixed up
And your drink won’t taste like water, if there’s milk down in your cup
The things you like are good because they’re mixed from other things
Good taste is just the product of the flavor each part brings
And each part on it’s own has not a flavor you’ll enjoy
But when they’re mixed together, you’ll jump and shout, “Oh boy!”
Life is like that chocolate cake, some things we don’t prefer
But blessings will soon win the day, this wisdom straight from her
The joy we have is little things that we don’t see at first
And if we don’t enjoy them, it seems our bubble’s burst
Most things in life we can’t control, though try so hard we may
But my happiness and attitude are things I choose each day
The things that God puts in my bowl, I stir them up and see
If something I don’t think I’ll like, will bring surprise to me
For bad things often work out good, we never seem to know
The blessings heaven’s cooking up for those of us below
Don’t judge the things in your bowl now, and put your faith in God today,
Let Him add the things He gives you, trust His hand to guide your way
Don’t mourn your bowl or cry too long, your loss could then be great
Yes, the cookies in the oven, they will burn if you are late

By Justin Ogden
Copyright February 17, 2018

In The Presence

Inspired by the song, “In the presence of Jehovah”

His presence is here and envelops us now,
It fills up our hearts as before Him we bow
Intangible essence rides upon spirit wing,
Inspiring our hearts, lifting voices to sing
Our baited expectancy, is manifest here,
We’re wanting to hear Him, and see Him appear
The light from His holy and glorious face,
Illumines us all right here in this place
The power of His light is so great we are awed,
And heals our whole being, His praises we laud

We taste of eternity here in His embrace,
Endowed with His wisdom, caressing His face
His presence is glorious, His presence is sweet,
It just overwhelms and sweeps us off our feet
Our petitions we bring before His holy throne,
For care and provision for those He calls His own
To carry out His kingdom will, His purpose to pursue,
His love to share with every man, that’s shown through me and you
His glory is above the heavens, His fame it fills the sky,
Incredible, His love for us, we can’t imagine why

His perfect will will yet be done,
As members of His body function as one
Disjointed in unity and seeking for naught,
Instead of God’s glory, as we know we ought
The peace of His presence is real to us now,
Brings us great blessings, we’re not sure quite how
Dipped in His glory, immersed in His love,
Redeemed by His mercy, our home is above.
Redeemed as mere sinners, He has sent us to tell,
The truth of the gospel, with our souls it is well

By Justin Ogden
Copyright February 14, 2018

Forrest Flurries

Encouragement for a poet who should work on his writing more

My rhyming lines might sound just great, and I don’t always concatenate
But poems come through your hand too, no rhyme required for you to do
Beauty is in the words you choose, not if they rhyme with other lines
The song is still as beautiful as what you see in vacant eyes
So let the poet’s words fill you, and through your pen the ink will tell
Like windows to the ocean deep, we see the things we cannot know
No rhyme required to hear this song, it’s meaning blossoms in the night
We come today to give our ear, we come today to lend our sight
It rides upon the mountain peaks, it’s beauty hidden where it lay
The lock is shut, you have the key, now loose the poem, make it free

By Justin Ogden
Copyright Jan 6, 2018

The Magi Meet the Maker

Christmas from the wise man’s perspective – from Matthew 2

We watch the stars, we know them well, we know their path and what they tell
The prophet spoke of Jacob’s star, His scepter rose and here we are
The stars they speak, in their own tongue, they tell about the Holy One
We read the story in the sky, we trek to find Him by and by
Though rich in treasure, we’re poor in love, the One we seek is from above
Each day our excitement grows, to meet this King that we don’t know

The story that we’ve heard is true, this King has come for me and you
To shine the light just like the star, to show us what and where we are
And draw us to the Holy Child, Who leads us onward, meek and mild
Our eyes of faith have brought us far, through many lands to where we are
And now it is obscured from view, where will we go, what will we do?
This King is great, this King is strong, His home’s a castle, can that be wrong?

Behold a city now appears, it’s fortified, is His castle here?
Do people know, have these folks seen, this King, the Lord of everything?
King Herod is still the king here, sir, the people say, in frightened words
Alas, they have not heard the news, they cannot seen the star in view
They have not seen His holy light, they do not seek the King tonight
Let’s check in with King Herod now, perhaps he’s heard the news somehow

Now Herod asks where we are from, we’ve come to seek the Holy One
From lands afar and kingdoms east, we’ve come to worship at His feet
Where is the King Whose star is bright, and do you know His name tonight?
It seems Herod’s on shaky ground, asks his advisors where He’s found
The prophets say in Bethlehem, is born to you the great I Am
So go and seek, and then when you, have found Him, tell me, I’ll come too

Outside the city, oh joyous sight, we once again beheld His light
Our course is set upon that star, we once again know where we are
Our next stop is the great I Am, Whose humble home is Bethlehem
We slow, and approach haltingly, to compose ourselves for what will be
Prepare our gift, prepare our heart, that is the most important part
We humbly toward His presence go, worship the One we want to know

Almighty Maker of the star, has come to dwell here where we are
The universe’s Creator soul, has come to seek and make us whole
With words of truth and gentle touch, He shows us that God loves us much
Creator, Judge of all the earth, is here to serve and give us worth
As children of the great high King, we gather here His praise to sing
And those who seek Him in this place, will come to know Him face to face

As we came before Him there, the gifts we brought could not compare
Expecting less, receiving more, from this Child that we adore
No horse, or throne, nor even crown, no fortress with His guards around
His royal presence, displayed full view, outshined all of the kings we knew
This child did not presume this role, this King’s authentic in His soul
Earthly kings their treasure hold, but this King loves, His gifts unfold

Although we’re regal in attire, His royalty trumped us by a mile
Though in a humble home He is, He’s born to rule, wherever He lives
The gold we gave was what we were, the richest men upon the earth
The resin tears of frankincense, used on the altar as insense
And Myrrh, the aromatic spice, for health and healing, sacrifice
Though we gave gifts, He gave us more, a purpose worth living for

Transfixed, our gaze upon His face, no child before has had such grace
His knowing eyes revealed my soul, how sinful choices took their toll
Mistakes I’d made and then forgot, alas, they were forgiven not
We asked for His forgiveness there, our voices trembling in despair
And then it washed up over me, cleared my mind, His peace I see
Redeemed my heart, so I could say, I know my life was changed today

Although we came to give a crown, the peace He gave us still abounds
It overflows our hearts with grace, it heals us right here in this place
Our joy is full, our hearts are light, we will talk about this King all night
And share this news with all we meet, so they can worship at His feet
As we prepared to then depart, God spoke in visions to our heart
We will not go to Herod’s house, return home by another route

Our hearts were changed by worship true, true worship will change your life too
This invitation is good for one, each one must come to meet God’s Son
If you’re seeking, come today, let nothing stop you or delay
Your greatest treasure is here to find, commune each day and with Him dine
Ambassadors to speak His name, His love to share, we tell His fame,
Our faith in God now ever sure, His loving care makes us secure

By Justin Ogden
Copyright December 17, 2017

Just Like Dad

For dads who have lost their dad

This boy was born to be my son, and right now he’s the only one
This Christmas it is bittersweet, to see him playing at my feet
Reminds me of my times with dad, and all the great times that we had
And though he’s absent from us here, this Christmas time God’s peace seems near
The spirit that he formed in me, is the kind of dad I want to be
I’ve walked his footsteps, now I see, that my boy’s doing that to me

In dad’s place now, I have the Lord, I have His love, His truth, His word
Shaping me for my next task, to know His will, I simply ask
To teach my son that God gave His, and that today He truly lives
And wants to live inside of us, and make our lives so joyous
God give me a disciple’s role, I trust in You, please make me whole
And we will live for You alone, to bring You glory, make Your know

By Justin Ogden
Copyright Dec 10, 2017

Craving God’s Word

God’s word works in powerful ways

The word it fills our craving hearts, we see our need, that’s where it starts
It’s the antiseptic to our sin, that we apply to wounds within
The power that can change us all, from trembling souls to saints like Paul
God’s truth, His essence, penned in words, communicates what we have heard
That word applied to all our lives, directs His body far and wide
God’s word, with skill like surgeon’s knife, will cleanse and heal our hearts tonight
God’s word will deal with us in truth, though we be aged or just a youth
O God, our minds with wisdom fill, to lead and guide, protect us still
God’s word was spoken to endure, protect us from the Devil’s lure
God’s word with wisdom fills our minds, to keep our lives between the lines
The straight and narrow we must walk, of God’s truth our mouths will talk
To God’s truth we will respond, to suffer as He leads us on

By Justin Ogden
Copyright October 19, 2017

My Blessed Sin

Feeling blessed by God is no substitute for putting our faith in God

O joyous heart, to Christ I’m lent, to the One who’s heaven sent
It’s just my pride, it’s not so bad, it keeps my heart from feeling sad
This blessed life I have right now, keeps me from seeing sin somehow
If God has blessed me evermore, why should I grovel on the floor?
Ask Him, forgive me my mistake? it’s no big deal, my heart won’t break
Don’t search for sin now, anymore, just wanting God to bless me more
God loves me so, why would I fret, for things I’ve not forsaken yet
Love myself more than my God? I think that’s me, I’d give a nod
He should forgive and make me whole, can cleanse my heart, restore my soul
Why would He let me fall away, and miss His coming, glorious day
If everyone is saved, it must be, that He would surely include me
My blessed sin, it keeps me here, believing that God still is near

O My child, you are deceived, see, you’re not saved ’cause you believe
The devils tremble and believe, and they are lost, be not deceived

God’s word is true, make it your guide, don’t trust the thoughts you have inside
You’re never good, although you try, to act like God, just choose to die
Jesus paid the price for you, to come to know the God who’s true
Your faith in Christ will make the switch, will lift your life up from the ditch
Trust in Him for all your days, and I will be your Friend always
Reject your sin to clearly see, you worship and and will live in Me,
To shape your life to My design, yes, this is what I have in mind
A useful tool that I can hold, through you the lives of others mold
All those I love I do chastise, thus I show their sin can’t hide
The sins that I have wiped away, won’t keep you from My glorious day
All those I call will persevere, and one day they’ll all gather here
Before My throne, in My own house, be loved as My eternal spouse

By Justin Ogden
Copyright September 2, 2017

The Launch

Oh Lord, today we launch our child, for years You’ve loaned this gift from You

The joy he’s brought into our hearts, a blessing to our lives, it’s true

We launch him now into the world, You set his course upon Your word

You shaped his life from long ago, the gospel message he has heard

Years he’s spent within our nest, soaking in his parent’s best

A strong example we have been, to help him to forsake his sin

And be the man he longs to be, serving You eternally

Now he mounts upon the wing, to seek God’s will in everything

My son, we’re proud of you today, we’ve seen you walking in God’s ways

And now he goes to do Your will, his heart is what we have in view

Your Spirit leads and guides him there, to the place where he’ll serve You

Prepare the woman that You have, that he will know makes him complete

And godly wisdom let him bring, where at the gate he’ll take his seat

The launching pad is empty now, but at Your throne we humbly bow

To thank You for this awesome treat, to launch Your child here at Your feet

To impact others with Your word, and shape them with the truth we’ve heard

So now, we launch ourselves anew, together fly, our course is true

Walk with God in paths of light, showing others what is right

Cleanse our lives and use us Lord, touching lives beyond our reach

Drawing them into the fold, all the ones You bring we’ll teach

Serving all those You elect, infuse them with Your joy divine

Bearing with our frailties, one day with God we will dine

Your truth will guide our hearts to You, it always will, Your word is truth

It seeks us out in our distress, and changes all our Nos to Yes

You’ve made us all Your merry band, leading us by Your strong hand

To follow in the path You’ve set, to follow the God we can’t see yet

Our future is at Your command, be in Your glory, at Your right hand

By Justin Ogden

Copyright July 29, 2017