Sunday, February 11, 2018

This Broken World

It’s times like this Lord
I’m reminded of the brokenness of this world

It’s hard to know what to pray
Or how to pray
What can I do
Being so very far away

Let them be aware of Your nearness
Your presences guiding them through each day
Give them strength when they grow weary
In unseen ways, You help them to carry their heavy burdens

In ways, both big and small
Reveal Your tender mercies
Bring to remembrance a hymn or Scripture verse
That stokes the fires of faith within

A timely phone call from family or friends
Just to listen so they know someone cares
Bring to mind Christ Jesus the Lord
At the right hand of the Father interceding for them

When grief and sadness overwhelm them
Holy Spirit translate their groaning into prayer
Their tears are precious to You
You note each one that falls and hold them in a bottle

For the mind that is failing
Allow moments of clarity each day
Though they may forget everything else
Let them never, no never, forget their God

Their suffering is great
I can’t help but ask how long O Lord
I find assurance in knowing You have numbered our days
You know our end from the beginning

You have promised when this life is over
Your saints will be welcomed home in the loving arms of their Savior
In heaven there will be no more tears, sorrow, sickness or death
Until then Lord, bring them through this broken world

Susan Wachtel
February 11, 2018

Friday, January 12, 2018

A Severe Mercy

When adversity tempts me ask why
Lord, may I instead ask what
What work are You doing in and through these trials

Hard circumstances and difficulties abound
The Lord has allowed, designed and purposed each one
He is using them to accomplish His good work

You help me to see my weakness
Profound needs that only God can meet
I recognize the foolishness in what I once thought was wise

You’ve exposed lies so cleverly disguised as truth
Revealed the brokenness of my heart, mind and soul
The utter depravity of my heart and desperate need for a Savior

All these and more drive me to You, O Lord
The world may be out of my control
But it’s firmly in control in the hands the LORD God

Lord, help me to trust You
To trust Your character
Believe what You’ve revealed about Yourself in Scripture

May I not doubt You O Lord
For You alone are truth and grace
Righteous and just in administering a severe mercy

Susan Wachtel
January 12, 2018

Sunday, December 03, 2017

Unintended Consequences

How could I have known
Of the unintended consequences
From a decision I made, an action I took

At that moment
It felt like the right thing to do

But now, I see a ripple effect
Which seems like a tsunami
Washing away what I hold dear

Though all around me, everything is slipping away
You alone O Lord will never leave, nor forsake me

Oh Lord, I cry out to You
As the waves crash in, help me hold on to the Anchor of my soul
Help me to trust You Lord Jesus, in the darkest night

Though my words fail, the Holy Spirit intercedes for me
My compassionate Savior prays for me and the merciful Father hears

Susan Bunts Wachtel
December 3, 2017

Sometimes its easier to see things in the lives of others, only to look back and see similar seasons in my own life.  When I look back and see the trials the Lord has brought me through, I stand amazed.  Thank You Jesus for not wasting one trial, or temptation or difficult season.  Thank You for the growth that can take place in the most difficult circumstances.  Though I can’t see the unintended circumstances that may come from something I do or say today, You can.  Help me to look to You, listen and obey You as you guide and direct me. 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Healing at the Gate Called Beautiful

Like the lame man 
At the gate called Beautiful
I too, have been raised up by Christ Jesus the Nazarene

Unlike the lame man
My healing was not physical
Instead it was far greater, a healing of my soul

I went from being spiritually dead, dead to God
Dead in my trespasses and sins
Unable to even look upon or respond to Him of my own accord

He raised me up and forgave my sins
Now I am alive to God
May I praise and glorify God for His marvelous work

With feet and ankles made strong by the LORD
May I walk just as I was raised
By the power of Christ 

May those who recognize me
As the woman dead in her sins at the gate called Beautiful
Be amazement at what Christ can do

By Susan Wachtel
September 28, 2017

For those of us who have family and friends who don’t yet know the LORD, persevere in prayer for their salvation. 

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

An Unexpected Journey

The day our family grew by one
So very unexpected, certainly not planned
Not pregnant, but it’s every bit as exciting

We thought we would welcome into our home
For a few weeks one summer
An orphan from a land far away

Little did we know
Our hearts would be knit together as one
Our children would embrace this precious child

This little one had a hard beginning
While still so young, was now alone
But LORD willing, not for long

Far too soon the day would come
When we had to send this young one back
This child whom we’ve come to love

What better way to celebrate and remember
Than a picnic, together as a family
On a beautiful warm summer day

Of course, we took pictures to remember
When we beheld the photos in our hands
We knew, this child was meant to become our own

Sadly, the day came for a tearful goodbye
We embraced, declared our love
Made promises to write and stay in touch

Thus, our unexpected journey began
Covered with prayer
Dependent upon the wisdom and guidance of God

We will rely on the support of family and friends
The loving care of our dear church family
As we walk the path of adoption, one step at a time

Seemingly endless paperwork to be completed
Funds to save and raise
To make what seems impossible happen

We will watch and pray
Delays may come
But our hearts will remain full of hope

Dependent upon God
Who goes before us
For His heart is close to the orphan

by Susan Bunts Wachtel
August 2, 2017

Have you ever heard a story and felt inspired and moved by what God was doing?  This poem was inspired by a story I recently read.  While I don’t know the all the details about what the family has experienced, I rejoice at the work the LORD is doing to give a precious orphan a family and change a life forever for good.  

Friday, June 09, 2017

Steadfast Faith

Lord grant me a faith
That remains steadfast in the face of trials
Faith that does not wither or fade
But one that looks beyond this present trial
To find joy in the greater work You will accomplish
Mature and grow my faith and trust in You

When I don’t know what to do or what step to take
In faith, let wisdom be my plea
Instead of deliverance from this trial
May I ask with confidence
Knowing that God who is all wise
Gives wisdom generously to those who ask in faith

Let me not doubt You
Or turn back, only to resort to my own sinful ways
Like Christ, give me a single-minded focus
Be not double-minded and tossed around like a wave
Driven by the wind of this stormy trial
But firmly believe God as revealed in Scripture

May I trust God with confidence and unquenchable faith
Know there is a crown of life that awaits me
All because Christ bore a crown of thorns
Was crucified and died for my sin
The One who rose victorious
Will help me steadfastly persevere under trials

By Susan Wachtel

June 9, 2017

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Word Clouds

Word Cloud from QuizzStar on Facebook

Word Clouds on Facebook are fun
As I wait to see what words I use most

But it got me thinking, what would the Word Cloud reveal
If it followed me around each day

What would be exposed if it recorded every word spoken
Every word shared in a text or email or online

Would they be words of life or death
Words that build up or tear down, truth or lies

Would it reveal my sinful, selfish heart
Or my love for the Lord

Would it be good and pleasing to You Lord
Or would it reveal why I so desperately need a Savior

Even more sobering
What if there was a Word Cloud that captured my thoughts

The thoughts I edit out, because even this sinner knows
There are some things that shouldn’t be said

Lord I know that You record my every word, thought and deed
There will come a day when I will give an account to You

Thank You Lord for providing Your Son, my Savior
To pay the penalty for my sin debt

If I were to be cast in to hell for eternity
I could never pay for all my sins against infinite Holy God

Thank You, Jesus, for dying for my sin
That I might be forgiven and granted eternal life

Thank You for the gift of Your Word which sanctifies me
Thank You for the Holy Spirit who dwells within

Help me to live each day
Mindful that I will give account to You

For every thought, word and deed
Help me to choose well and live out of love for You

Susan Wachtel
December 22, 2016

Sunday, October 09, 2016

A Morally Confused Election

Lord, I can’t help but believe
Both candidates are part of Your judgment
On the wicked morally bankrupt nation that we’ve become

What a sorry state we are in
The top two candidates
Reflect the state of our moral confusion

It’s more than just ideological differences
It’s bigger than choosing between left and right
Democrat or Republican

We are a nation divided
Even within our political parties
We have splintered and are spinning out of control

Can I just say
Trump was my number 17 choice
Out of a field of 17 candidates

After his nomination
I was depressed
In a quandary as what to do

Over time
I accepted my choices are limited
Trump, Clinton, Johnson, Write-in or Not Vote

I asked the question
Does Never Hillary
Trump Never Trump

The best thing about Trump
He’s not Hillary
The worst thing about Trump, he’s himself

The campaigning and debates revealed
Not just a flawed candidate
But a man who was morally bankrupt

Remember the awful, wretched things he said
About the candidates, their wives and families
Let’s not forget the reporters and anyone else within range

The man has no filter on his mouth
He speaks before he thinks
Some find it refreshing, I find it appalling

He brought the discourse of debate
To a new all-time low
Vile name calling instead of focusing on issues

Boastful pride and arrogance
Bragging of his sexual conquests and body parts
He doesn’t classify adultery as sin, but God does

Hillary feigns outrage at Trump’s antics
But let’s not forget Clinton’s corruption 
Both personal and professional

Over the years, Hillary’s complicit in covering up
Not just Bill’s sexual immorality
But shutting down the women he’s sexually assaulted

Remember Benghazi…what difference does it make
Was it incompetence or negligence
That left four Americans dead; and why the lies

Personal email servers for convenience of course
Classified…what’s that?  Never received them
National security at risk, all for what

State Department and influence for sale to the highest bidder
Clinton Foundation coffers grow by leaps and bounds
Got to cover our tracks...delete, delete, delete

Corruption long-lived and far reaching
The Justice Department and FBI
Once agencies of integrity, now aid and abet

Corruption abounds
Moral bankruptcy knows no bounds
Lord, what’s a Christian to do?

Not vote?  Men fought and died for that right
Vote for the lesser of evils
Throw away my vote with a write-in who won’t win

With all the noise and rhetoric
I don’t know how to vote
Lord, what would you have me to do?

by Susan Wachtel
October 8, 2016

Sunday, September 11, 2016

A Vow to Remember

Fifteen years ago
I made a solemn vow
That I would always remember

That day is etched
Imagines seared
Permanently in my mind

The horror of planes
Filled with precious human souls
Lives extinguished in an instant

What kind of person would do this
Intentionally crash a plane into a building
That’s the day, I left na├»ve behind

Oh the living hell they must have endured
Above the points of impact, now left to choose
Do I jump or die in this inferno

Desperate phone calls and messages went out
Pleas for help that would never reach them
Love proclaimed by voices that would soon be silenced

Firemen and police officers
Dedicated to serve and protect
Answered the call that day and laid down their lives

110 story skyscrapers don’t collapse!
Not just one, but two towers came down that day
Dust clouds chasing those who miraculously survived

Unthinkable evil struck again
Another plane filled with precious human souls
Used as a missile, plowed headlong into the Pentagon

Lives extinguished
Devastating injuries
Wounds, far deeper, scared the souls of those who survived

The war against evil began that day
It started on United 93
Courageous, heroic passengers said, “No!  We’re taking it back.”

On that day it didn’t matter
Black, White, Asian, Hispanic, Native American
We were all one…Americans United

Can it really be
There’s a generation that wasn’t alive
Or those who don’t remember that fateful day

There isn’t a day that goes by
When I don’t remember
Recall afresh the horror of that day

It may be a plane overhead
A tall building on the horizon
A police officer or firefighter passing by

An American flag flying in the breeze
Saying the Pledge of Allegiance
Singing “Oh, say, can you see” evokes tears

To those whose lives were extinguished
Those who lost family or friends
I vow to always remember

by Susan Wachtel
September 11, 2016

Sunday, September 04, 2016

A Living Testimony

In eternity past
Before God formed this world
He planned for two hearts to become one
Their love for Christ
The Solid Rock foundation for their lives
Desire to honor and glorify the Lord
Unwavering trust
In both good times and bad
God is praised
Not only with their lips
But with their very lives
When trouble’s strong winds began to blow
Waves threatened to swamp them
They clung to Christ all the more
Their hope in Him could not be quenched
Though pain and suffering threatened to extinguish the flame
Hope’s light burned brighter in the darkness
Like Paul they believe
Our present sufferings are not worthy to be compared
To the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ
This present life is passing away
It’s only when we die, that a Christian will be truly home
Until that time
Eyes focused on Christ
Hearts fully committed
Trust in the unfailing source of their strength
For each day, Christ is walking with them
Their young lives, a living testimony
To Christ their Savior and God
He alone is their hope
The proof and evidence of the resurrection to come
Of life everlasting, without end

For Tyler and Mariah

by Susan Wachtel
September 3, 2016

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Useful Reporter

He calls himself a journalist
Confident that he’s a crack reporter
Truth be told he’s nothing but a shill

A useful, pliable tool
In the hands of the left
An attack dog released at their command

Unquestionably believes everything he’s told
Long ago he gave up aspirations
To be a serious and well respected journalist

Stories of substance go untold
For they take too much time and effort
Followed by unrelenting criticism if he goes against PC storyline

So what if a high ranking political leader
Gets away with lying criminal actions
With nary a slap on the wrist

So what if the door is held open wide
No attempt to seriously vet those who may have hateful intentions
Stand by with shock and horror when murderous plans are unleashed

So what if our military is abandoned despite pleas for help
Only to be left to fend for themselves
When overrun by well-coordinated radical Islamic jihadists

So what if our borders are like a sieve
After all, US sanctuary cities
Stand ready to embrace illegal immigrants, no matter their crime

When race relations are at a new low
He adds fuel to the fire
Joining the popular political narrative

A thorough investigation will take too much time
Headlines will be missed
What if the facts don’t match the story at hand

Long ago, his quest to be a great journalist was forgotten
No longer known for truth, honesty, integrity and digging into a story
Instead he’s settled for being just another useful reporter

by Susan Wachtel
July 19, 2016

This poem was inspired by the ridiculous irrelevant stories the press is running with following the first day of the Republican National Convention.  If reporters and journalists were to actually focus on real stories of substance, we might have a chance for real dialogue on important issues of our day.