Category Archives: haiku

#612: Sermon Haiku #45: Matthew 13:1-23

Bob Earle spoke the sermon this week,
taking as his text the Parable of the Sower.
It’s all about soil
Seed’s growth depends on the earth
rich loam or packed path?
Listen, hearing’s not enough
Hard hearts won’t grow anything
Roots can’t penetrate
Looking to Jesus
Miracles and sacrifice–
Crowded out by weeds

Holy Spirit drives
Connection with himself
roots reaching deeper
Pure Godward focus
Joyful multiplication
Bountiful harvest

What kind of soil am I?

#611: Cherry Tree Haiku

In honor of the just ended Hanami season in Japan:
A Haiku.

Cotton candy blooms
Kwanzan cherry explosion
Why are there no bees?
An active beehive
A cherry tree right next door
What’s going on here?
Apparently the double blossoms of the Kwanzan cherry,
which smell faintly almondy,
don’t attract pollinators.
They don’t need to, as Kwanzan cherry trees don’t fruit,
they spread by shoots from their shallow roots.
They don’t live long, usually 15-25 years.
When this one dies, I’m replacing it with a 
fruiting cherry tree.
Good for the bees and good for pie.

#597: Sermon Haiku #44: Luke 4:1-13

Fighting temptation
Prepare for battle: armor
first, then grab my sword.
(So, my particular temptation is sloth,
hence the bike, now you know)
Resist the devil:
He’s the enemy of my soul
Not George with a pup
I’m vulnerable
Mostly when I think I’m not.
Be alert, be wary.
Holy Spirit filled
God himself empowers me
I fight in His strength.

Devil’s repertoire:
‘You can handle this alone.’
‘God abandoned you.’
Google the Scriptures:
Listen: ‘I am with you always.’
God’s word sets me straight.
Set free by the truth:
My name, written on His heart.
This world can’t compare.

#572: Sermon Haiku #43: 1 Peter 2:4-12

Who are Christ’s followers?
Better than everyone else?
Just ordinary?
Not better, chosen.
Called apart, God’s possession
Made worthy by grace
Called for a purpose
Living the realness of God
in an unreal world
Solid on the Rock
Jesus’ stone, vibrant with life
shouting out His praise
Light in the darkness
Blessed, privileged, honored
Not because we’re good
But because He is.
Master Mason, laying stone,
Building His temple.

#559: Sermon Haiku #42: Acts 2-3

Gale-force winds, fiery tongues

Spirit’s promised arrival

Heart language gospel

Peter’s 2nd chance

Post-resurrection sermon
No longer afraid

Death can’t hold Jesus
His promise for all He calls:
Broken chains, new life

Court of the Gentiles 

Pass through the Beautiful Gate
Not for the broken

Beggar, lame from birth
Outside the gate, seeking alms
God has a surprise

Peter speaks to him
In the name of Jesus, walk
Lifts him to his feet

Dancing through the gate
Praising God with his whole self
Astonishing all

Faith in Jesus’ name
The days have finally come
Lame men leap with joy

#538: Sermon Haiku #41: Revelation 1

Clear view of Jesus
Can’t stay focused, what to do?
Caller ID helps
Bible Gateway site
I’ll get there in a minute
Checking Facebook first

Ten minutes later
John’s not the only one who
Needs Revelation

A glance is a start
Jesus, faithful messenger
Resurrected One

Ruler over all
Loves us unalterably  
Freeing us from sin
Tarnished gold lampstands
Designed to hold gospel light
Needing to be shined

Jesus walks between
Hanging out among churches
Polishing the gold.

#530: Sermon Haiku #40: Galatians 5:22-24

Holy Spirit’s fruit
Love: genuine affection
Agape ripened

Exuberant joy
Keeping the Father’s commands
Fruit that never spoils

Shalom transcendant
Incomprehensible peace
Guarding minds and hearts

Willing to stand by
Holding tight to God’s promise
Patient endurance
Kindly compassion
Heart’s unfolding giftedness
Sweet-smelling flower

God’s goodness prevails
Committed to holiness
Giving way to grace

Eyes focused on God
Pruned carefully, still faithful
Nourished by the Vine
Oh, gentle of heart
Never forcing my own way
How I long for this

The fruit comes from Him
By the Holy Spirit’s power
God, not self, control.

#509: Sermon Haiku #39: Galatians 3

Living by the law
Self-defeating arrogance
Hopelessness revealed
Sunglow shines on sin
Scrubbed away by Jesus’ blood
Complete acceptance?
Yes! By grace, not works
World’s power irrelevant
Equal heirs in Christ
World-wide believers
Even here at Summer Street
Worshipping as one
Hailing from Holland
Brazil, Germany, Norway
Lebanon, Haiti
Jamaica, Belgium,
the only real question:
Do I walk with Christ?

#508: Sermon Haiku #38: Galatians 3:1-9

Les Miserables played at the Dreamland
last week, I went to see it with David.
It ties in with what Paul
is trying to say in Galatians.
The pictures are of a Nantucket backyard soon to be
redone by the new owner.
It’s full of memory I hoped to capture.
What keeps us going 
When life becomes difficult?
Self-effort won’t work.

Jean Valjean learned grace
when it was freely offered
Javert never did
Which one was a slave?
Living by grace is freedom
Press on. Persevere.

Indwelling Spirit

Strengthens and helps us
to rest in God’s grace.

#436: Sermon Haiku #37: Luke 18:9-14

As Pastor Rich is away,
 Bob Earle gave the sermon.
Two men stand praying
Pharisee, tax collector
Which wins God’s favor?
Scrupulous obedience
Did that make him right with God?
Don’t miss this, friend:
Salvation by works?
Jesus says: not possible
Brownie points can’t save.
Breast-beating failure
Despised by the self-righteous
Yet, he’s forgiven.
Saved by grace alone
No righteousness of his own
beloved of God.