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In Front And Behind The Mountain Trail
Like This Eagle
Cross Talk
Thank You For Leading Me Home
I Love My College
Created Glory
Green Light

 In Front And Behind The Mountain Trail
As I travel up this mountain trail so steep,
I listen for a voice, someone ahead of me,
An encourager and leader, one who is true,
Someone who has experienced what I am going through.

For it is the person ahead who must look back,
Please tell me if my feet are on the right track,
The mist is too heavy between you and me,
Please describe the beautiful sight you must see!

Yet I hear no voice and sense I am alone,
Sometimes I even forget the sights I have been shown,
You see, even leaders need a voice for direction,
For behind them lie ears waiting for correction.

So as you continue through this steep journey of life,
Remember those behind you and out of sight,
Describe to them the view of Christ, you now clearly see,
                                               For it may be their echo that reaches you in time of need.  

 Like This Eagle
With wings it soars as high as the eye can see,
Alone and graceful it sways in the sky above,
Depending only on God for pure security,
I want to be like this eagle, soaring with God's love!

Is this honorable creature lonely as it flies in solitude,
While it holds it's head high, regardless the circumstance?
Set apart and different it seems to be to you,
But I want to be like this eagle, soaring with God's hands!

Brave and dignified yet it shows humility and trust,
Never setting boundaries, always pressing towards the goal,
While some prefer staying low, I want to go higher above the worldly dust,
Lord, make me like this eagle, soaring so free and within Your hold!

 Cross talk
We talk about your life, kids, family and home,
We talk about the long distant future and victories already shown,
We talk about your work and stress with others,
But while your mouth moves, do we show truth to one another?

We talk about the early days and trade memories,
We talk in conflict and sometimes disagree,
We talk about the value of life and decisions made,
But why do you still hide behind your mask, disguised in the shade?

As this world continues to turn, so do the words continue between us,
We have shared so much, now lets leave your mask in the dust,
Is it impossible to reveal your hurt, pain and fears?
For you know I am your Father, I see your victories and tears.

Come to me My child, I love you just the way you are,
There is no need to hide your bruises and scars,
My Son's wrists and ankles reveal the result of pain and abuse,
But my child, it was through His tears that I displayed my love to you.

As you continue this journey and need a helping hand,
Remember I will remain beside you until the very end,
I see every smile along with each tear that falls,
You were made in My image and I am always here, whenever you are ready to talk.

I wear on my feet a pair of sandals,
A gift the Lord has given to me,
I always remove or carry them by the handle,
And they remain so beautiful, sparkling clean.

With a smile on my face, I went to thank the Lord,
For I had cherished this gift He graciously handed to me,
But as I approached, I did not find what I was waiting for,
A pair of large sandals was all I could see.

My eyes began to gaze upon these sandals - they were much like mine,
However, these were much bigger and covered with dust and dirt,
In fact, the leather was worn and the buckles had lost their shine,
I even saw blood spots and their appearance suddenly lost it's comfort.

My sandals sparkled in the sun and the leather appeared brand new,
I avoided the long journeys and windy roads at all costs,
I was extremely careful and even cleaned off the mildew,
I anxiously awaited the Lord's face, for the other sandals He would surely toss.

Then suddenly two feet appeared next to mine,
They were larger and filthier; I had to step away,
As I reached for the big sandals, His hand beat mine just in time,
As He said, “My child, would you like to try on My sandals today?”

He took off my prized sandals, and together we looked into the steps of His life,
And I was suddenly whisked away to the brightness of a dusty city street,
I watched Him heal the lame, touch the sick and turn water into wine,
I was at awe at His teaching and parables as He spent His days in the agonizing heat.

He loved these people and for a moment I believed they loved Him in return,
But from the lips of those who yelled, “Hosanna,” soon came “Crucify Him,”
His sandals were removed in exchange for a cross and a crown of thorns,
My Lord, You soon died giving life to all those with sin.

Even though You were seen as dead by those who followed Your words and teaching,
On the third day You rose and filled Your sandals once again,
Defeating death and giving life an entire new meaning,
You stepped where others would not go, it is through You that true life begins!

Suddenly I looked down and my clean sandals reappeared into view,
Christ's feet just seemed too glorious for my shoes, His love shined through,
My foot barely made a mark in His sandal, yet my passion for Him was renewed,
With a smile I asked the Lord to trade again and I said, “I want to be more like you.”

For now on I will follow, remaining close to You,
I will go where you send me, completing what You want me to do,
These sandals will be worn, dirty, torn and used,
But each tare will reveal my joy as I learn to become more like You.

 Thank You For Leading Me Home
As your words come to me, floating through my head,
I can't help to think about the steps of my past,
For this road has been long, a lot has been said,
But one day I will reach my Home at last.

Friends are friends forever and this is my time to shine,
You have shown me that I am never truly alone,
For my place in this world is made possible through Jesus Christ,
Thank you my friend for leading me Home.

Your words found me in the darkness; my heart was drowning in hopelessness,
My soul was so very lost and confused,
But your message gave me rest, giving me Christ and nothing less,
Your example of reaching out is now my chosen life's avenue.

Friends are friends forever and this is my time to shine,
You have shown me that I am never truly alone,
For my place in this world is made possible through Jesus Christ,
Thank you my friend for leading me Home.

Thank you for your words and the power of your songs,
It is on your knees I pray that you will continue to stand tall,
For you reflect Christ to a world that truly longs,
For people like you, God's spark of light to us all.

Friends are friends forever and this is my time to shine,
You have shown me that I am never truly alone,
For my place in this world is made possible through Jesus Christ,
Thank you my friend for leading me Home.

I am but one candle that now lights up the night,
Started by your spark of God's everlasting light,
Drawing closer to God each and everyday,
Spreading this fire of joy that brightens my way.

Friends are friends forever and this is my time to shine,
You have shown me that I am never truly alone,
For my place in this world is made possible through Jesus Christ,
Thank you my friend for leading me Home.
Oh thank you my friend, for leading me Home.

---Dedicated to Michael W. Smith (Smitty) for his ministry through words and song.

(apologies to Dr. Seuss)

I love my college, I love to pay, I love it more and more each day.
I love my teachers and they're the best. I love their boss and all the rest.
I love my dorm and it's location. I hate to have to take vacation.
I love my desk, drab and gray, and love those paper piles each day.
I love my chair in my padded cell; there's nothing else I love so well.
I love to work among my peers. I love their leers 'n jeers 'n sneers.
I love my computer and all its ware; I hug it often to show I care.
I love each program and every file; I even try using it once in a while.
I'm happy to be here, I am, I am...I'm the happiest slave to my friend Keeran.
I love this work; I love these chores; I love the classes with deadly bores.
I love my college AND I'll say it again, I even love these friendly men:
These men who've come to visit today, in lovely white coats to take me away!

Plagiarized and adapted by:
Bethany Searle and Katie Warner

****Keeran is the president of the college

As I look at my life, and the steps that were taken,
I realize how far my journey has come,
Step by step, trying so hard not to be shaken,
But without you, many victories would not have been won.

Your words of advice and marks of correction,
Reminded me that there was always a greater joy in life,
As I looked upon your leadership I witnessed Christ's reflection,
Thank you for passing on the light.

I may forget the information tested and what each author wrote,
I will not recall every diagram, chart, name and theory,
My mind may stumble over several pages of gathered notes,
But I will never forget your light of passion for ministry.

You are definitely a leader, for I have gained more than knowledge,
I now see a future and a path identified as ministry,
Holding with me the light of passion, wisdom and courage,
All of which you graciously shared with me.

I am but one candle that now lights up the night,
Started by your spark of God's everlasting light,
Drawing closer to Him each and everyday,
Thank you for starting my journey in the right way.

-Written by Bethany Searle  May 4, 2003: Dedicated to the passion and ministry of Mrs. Linda Lawson. Thank you for everything you have done and for helping to make me the minister I will become.

 Created Glory
As I marvel at Your wonders, how unique humanity humanity tends to be,
With both body and soul, standing purely alone,
Apart from animals, plants and wonders of the sea,
Different from the land and even the angels above.

Can a mountain speak of Your glory my King?
Is there a soul in which birds of the air posses?
The clouds do not worship their Creator through singing,
Nor can these creations realize Your righteousness.

You are mindful of man, placing him above Your five days of work,
Revealing to him Your glory and salvation through Christ,
Life sings a new meaning when connected with Your Word,
You bring comfort to pain and turn darkness into light.

How can man complain that You have left his side,
Claiming life's fairness has gone sour and all hope has disappeared,
While he stands in the midst of Your glory, he is unable to hide,
For creation echoes Your love and glory; why should man fear?

He has been clothed in Your image, a longing for truth and knowledge,
A free-willed creation with a gift of life, not easily bought,
You saved him from eternal darkness and death's edge,
You are King and Creator, Lord and Redeemer; nothing less than God.

 Green Light

As I walked through the traffic of Southland Christian Church,
My mind was rolling as I geared up for my green light search,
You see, I was told that Chicago was the place to be,
But a church by the name of Willow was still a dream.

"I'm doing an internship here" I thought to myself,
Kentucky is the land flowing with Ale-8-ones on the shelves,
Why would I leave the warm weather for the cold,
Why this decision of mine seems quite bold.

But I want to dream higher than ever before,
I want to see a church with an open door,
A place available to all, even Ken Tucky,
I want to see if this Willow Creek is a reality.

With hands sweating and heart racing fast,
I reached Todd Layne's door at last,
He holds the power and authority to hold me back,
Or he can give me a suitcase and say, "Go pack."

I like green lights because I loose my patience with red,
It's decision times like this that I deeply dread,
I state my case and I put my plans out bare,
When I end, I look and see his bewildered stare.

I swallowed hard, and prepared to leave,
I put my plans back in my head and rolled down my sleeves,
The internship was in Kentucky, not in Chicago,
It suddenly made sense why I should not go.

As I turned my back, prepared to walk out the door,
I saw a green light reflecting brighter than ever before,
Facing Todd again, he said, Why shouldn't you go,
We're not the only ones preparing you for ministry you know."

My mind started rolling again, Willow Creek here I come,
What an opportunity and adventure this has already become,
Receiving so much encouragement from family and friends,
I now see why the joy of ministry never ends!

Red lights seem so long and push us to the line,
Yet God places them in our lives at just the right time,
Allowing us to see Him work in ways we never imagined before,
If we would only take our eyes off the light and look outdoors.

Hats off to Chicago, up North I will go,
I hear there is a bald guy around there named Breaux,
And I imagine I will look back and remember all the sights I will see,
But in the background of each image will lie a bold shade of green!