Posts Tagged ‘triptych’

A Triptych from Hebrews 6: Take a look (Panel 2)

June 9, 2021

Today’s blog entry is the second of a series of three poems that form a triptych inspired by Hebrews 6:10-12. OxfordDictionaries.com defines a triptych as, “a set of three associated artistic, literary, or musical works intended to be appreciated together.” WordNet 3.6 provides this definition of triptych art, as “art consisting of a painting or carving (especially an altarpiece) on three panels (usually hinged together).” Here is an example of one panel of a triptych carved from wood with three sections on each leaf. Each of the three poems that form my triptych is also accompanied by commentary and a musical selection related to that work.

ONE LEAF OF A TRIPTYCH IN CATHEDRAL OF SEVILLE

Watchman Nee, early 20th Century church leader and teacher in China, describes the life of each believer in this way—“the Christian journey, from start to finish, is a journey of faith.” As we journey through life, we encounter challenges designed to build our faith. Believers are on a journey that takes us from faith to faith, glory to glory, and victory to victory as we pursue the will of God for our lives.

My life continues to unfold as a journey of faith  with several notable milestones along the way.  At 12 years of age I became a member of Carter Chapel C.M.E (Christian Methodist Episcopal) Church in Gary, Indiana, where I accepted Christ as my savior. The spiritual foundation for my life was laid in that church where I was actively involved throughout elementary and high school. I recall attending a summer camp in Saugatuck, MI as a rising sophomore and volunteering to do a short teaching on youth night. For some reason, I was inspired to share from Hebrews 11 verses one and six, two verses related to faith, the bedrock of my life:

Upon graduation as Valedictorian, Class of 1960 from Froebel High School, I attended Purdue University from 1960-1965, earning a BS Degree in Pharmacy and becoming a Registered Pharmacist in Indiana. In 1967 I was drafted into the U.S. Army during the Vietnam era, as I experienced a close encounter of the most intimate kind with Jesus Christ, my Savior. While serving as a pharmacy instructor at the Medical Field Service School in San Antonio at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, I rode the crest of the Jesus Movement and experienced a powerful conversion that introduced me to the transforming power of God through receiving the Holy Spirit and studying the Bible. During my stint in the military, I discovered the joys of classroom teaching, a passion that continues to burn. I also recognized my poetic inclination and sought to develop the art and craft of the poet.

Here is an original psalm inspired in part by Hebrews 6:11

This Far by Faith

And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence

to the full assurance of hope until the end,      

Hebrews 6:11

 “We have come this far by faith.”      

Traditional Black Gospel Song   

Though we see truth, there is still the rest of the story, 

As we strive to be all that God called us to be,   

Created to be to the praise of His glory, 

We walk by faith and not by what we can see. 

We now rise above to view life from God’s grand scope: 

Each day our faith will increase and not diminish.

With diligence to the full assurance of hope, 

We will complete our course, striving toward the finish.  

A great cloudof witnesses surround us to cheer 

Us on from faith to faith and victory to victory.

The mighty hand of our gracious God brought us here,

For such a time as this—behold our destiny. 

While pressing toward the mark, we must still watch and wait,

As we sing our song, “We have come this far by faith.” 

Growing up in the 1950s in Gary, IN, I have fond musical memories from the “Golden Age of Gospel Music.” One of the most popular songs of this period was “We’ve Come This Far by Faith,” a selection often used as a processional for morning services at countless Black churches across the country. The opening lyrics of the renowned gospel favorite are woven into the tapestry of the poem:

Voices of Hope, a choir from Los Angeles under the direction of Thurston Frazier, offer a rendition of one of the most popular gospel songs of the Fifties and Sixties.

A Triptych from Hebrews 6: Take a look

June 8, 2021

This morning while listening to a YouTube recording of peaceful relaxation music for meditation, one of the accompanying verses arrested my attention and brought to mind three verses from Hebrews 6:10-12. These verses inspired three poems which when connected together form “A Triptych from Hebrews 6.” OxfordDictionaries.com offers this definition of the term “triptych”: “A set of three associated artistic, literary, or musical works intended to be appreciated together.” WordNet 3.6 provides this definition of triptych art, as “art consisting of a painting or carving (especially an altarpiece) on three panels (usually hinged together).” Here is an example taken from the same source: a cathedral door in Seville, Spain.

ONE LEAF OF A TRIPTYCH IN CATHEDRAL OF SEVILLE

Over the next three days, I will feature a blog post inspired by one the verses from Hebrews 6:10-12. The first panel of this collection appeared in a recent blog post, “Each sunrise reminds us God is faithful” Here is an excerpt:

In Hebrews 6:10 (New Living Translation) we find another reminder that God is faithful and that He is not unjust

For God is not unjust. He will not forget how hard you have worked for him and how you have shown your love to him by caring for other believers, as you still do.

As believers we endeavor to serve God and minister to one another. Our efforts may not always be recognized nor appreciated. Those whom we serve in love may not always remember what we say and do, but we are assured that God never forgets. Not only is God, our Father, faithful and just, but He is also a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6), as the following poetic comments illustrate:

A Reminder: God Is Faithful

For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love,

which you have shown toward his name, in that you have ministered

to the saints and do minister.

Hebrews 6:10

All the good deeds you have done may not be extolled

When the fervor of God’s love has long since grown cold.

Some so quickly forget all the good you have done,

And they fail to recall you were the only one

To answer the call, seek the Lord and intercede.

Time after time you were the one to meet the need.

When others were busy and chose to walk away,

You were there and remained in the thick of the fray.

In dark times when words of thanks are distant memories,

Recall our God knows all things, for He alone sees

Your labor and saves every tear you have shed.

Our Father is ever mindful of how you serve,

And He shall reward you beyond all you deserve.

As you strive to finish your course, have no regret:

Our God is faithful–He will never forget.

In reflecting upon God’s faithfulness as expressed in the Word of God, I thought of this medley of two songs that have come to mean so much to me: “He’s Been Faithful” and “Great is Thy Faithfulness” offered by The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir:

Three poems from Hebrews 6

November 2, 2015

Hebrews 6--10 In this past Sunday morning’s message at Christian Provision Ministries in Sanford, NC, Bishop Charles Mellette delivered a powerful teaching, as part of a series: “God is Our Source.” This particular lesson offered the subtitle: “Help is on the Way” and provided this objective: “to empower and encourage you to trust God in challenging times.” In the course of the teaching, Bishop Mellette focused on three verses from Hebrews 6:10-12. I wrote in my notes to check out the three poems that I had written a few years, inspired by these very verses.

As I read over the poems, I noted that they are part of a collection connected to “Knowing God’s Will.” In fact, the three poetic works were part of a series that I called a “Triptych on the Will of God.” OxfordDictionaries.com offers this definition of the term “triptych”: “A set of three associated artistic, literary, or musical works intended to be appreciated together.” WordNet 3.6 provides this definition of triptych art, as “art consisting of a painting or carving (especially an altarpiece) on three panels (usually hinged together).” Here is an example taken from the same source:

ONE LEAF OF A TRIPTYCH IN CATHEDRAL OF SEVILLE

ONE LEAF OF A TRIPTYCH IN CATHEDRAL OF SEVILLE

The three attached poems in my triptych are inspired by quotations and verses from Hebrews 6:10-12

A Reminder: God Is Faithful

 

For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love,

which ye have shown toward his name,

in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.

Hebrews 6:10

The good deeds that you have done may not be extolled

When the fervor of God’s love has long since grown cold.

Some quickly forget all the good that you have done

And fail to recall that you were the only one

To answer the call, seek the Lord and intercede.

Time after time you were the one to meet the need.

When others were busy and chose to walk away,

You were there and remained in the thick of the fray.

In dark times when words of thanks are distant memories,

Recall that God knows all things, for He alone sees

Your labor and saves all the tears that you have shed.

Our Father is ever mindful of how you serve,

And He shall reward you beyond all you deserve.

As you strive to finish your course, have no regret:

Our God is faithful–He will never forget.

Hebrews 6:10 is graphically illustrated in this video clip:

The second in the series takes its title from a familiar gospel song that I vividly recall in my formative years in the 1950s along with the second verse from Hebrews 6:

This Far by Faith

And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence                            

to the full assurance of hope until the end,                               

Hebrews 6:11

                                        

“We have come this far by faith.”

Traditional Black Gospel Song

 

Though we see truth, there is still the rest of the story,

As we strive to be all that God called us to be.

Created to be to the praise of His glory,

We walk by faith and not by what we can see.

We now rise above to view life from God’s grand scope:

Each day our faith will increase and not diminish.

With diligence to the full assurance of hope,

We will complete our course, striving toward the finish.

A great cloud of witnesses surround us to cheer

Us on from faith to faith and victory to victory.

The mighty hand of our gracious God brought us here,

For such a time as this—behold our destiny.

As we press toward the mark, we must not lose our gait.

Lyrics remind us “We have come this far by faith.”

Voices of Hope, a wonderful choir from Los Angeles under the direction of Thurston Frazier offer the title selection:

The third poem in the series was inspired as I was working on an article related to patience, as the fruit of the spirit that was in season at the time that I wrote it. Entitled “Farmer Johnson,” the poem is also related to the passage on patience found in James 5:7-9 which speaks of the farmer who plants, patiently waiting for the bountiful harvest. In the poem I also make reference to an actual apple orchard. Most remarkably, I also came across an endorsement from someone who had sampled the apples from “Farmer Johnson Apple Orchards” in Washington State. The individual commented, “I have had the opportunity to try all the varieties of Farmer Johnson apples, they are the best apples I have ever tasted. Fresh, crisp…. the perfect apple.” I couldn’t help but smile, as I reflected upon my desire to be “neither barren nor unfruitful” but to be productive and highly fruitful in all my endeavors. Just as apples are now in season in the natural at “Farmer Johnson’s Apple Orchards”, so in the spirit, patience is the fruit I am endeavoring to perfect during this my present season. Hebrews 6:12 serves as the introductory verse along with lyrics from a familiar hymn “He Leadeth Me”

Farmer Johnson

That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who

through faith and patience inherit the promises.

Hebrews 6:12

He leadeth me, He leadeth me,
By His own hand He leadeth me;
His faithful follower I would be,
For by His hand He leadeth me.

Lyrics by Joseph H. Gilmore

Farmer Johnson owns orchards in Washington State.

His apples are renowned and said to be the best.

As scriptures remind us to labor and to rest,

This Farmer Johnson is patient and learns to wait

For the bountiful fruit of his harvest season.

Patience now abounds to complete and perfect me,

As I walk by faith, despite all that I may see,

I assess my times and unfold the real reason

For all the trials and seeming setbacks that came.

At times I felt as though being torn asunder

But like Job, I still abide and bear up under.

God yet delivers those who call upon His name.

Committed to go wherever the Lord shall send,

A faithful follower, enduring to the end.

The last line brings to mind another vintage hymn from childhood days and beyond: “He Leadeth Me,” as iworship offers a stirring rendition of this memorable song:

A Reminder: God is faithful

May 18, 2015

Hebrews_6-10

The Verse of the Day for May 18, 2015 is found in Hebrews 6:10 (NIV):

God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.

While reflecting upon this particular verse, I recall a poem that I had written inspired by verse 10 of Hebrews 6. As I was preparing to send a framed copy of the poem to two of my cousins, I realized that I had also written poems inspired by Hebrews 6:11-12 as well.

These three poems formed what is called a “triptych,” which OxfordDictionaries.com defines as, “a set of three associated artistic, literary, or musical works intended to be appreciated together.” WordNet 3.6 provides this definition of triptych art, as “art consisting of a painting or carving (especially an altarpiece) on three panels (usually hinged together).” Here is an example of one panel of a triptych carved from wood with three sections on each leaf.

triptych altar

Each of the three poems that form my triptych is also accompanied by a musical selection related to that work.

A Reminder: God Is Faithful

God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.

Hebrews 6:10

The good deeds that you have done may not be extolled

When the fervor of God’s love has long since grown cold.

Some quickly forget all the good that you have done

And fail to recall that you were the only one

To answer the call, seek the Lord and intercede.

Time after time you were the one to meet the need.

When others were busy and chose to walk away,

You were there and remained in the thick of the fray.

In dark times when words of thanks are distant memories,

Recall that God knows all things, for He alone sees

Your labor and saves all the tears that you have shed.

Our Father is ever mindful of how you serve,

And He shall reward you beyond all you deserve.

As you strive to finish your course, have no regret:

Our God is faithful–He will never forget.

Here is a graphic illustration of Hebrews 6:10:

Growing up in the 1950s in Gary, IN, I have fond musical memories from the “Golden Age of Gospel Music.” One of the most popular songs of this period was “We’ve Come This Far by Faith,” a selection often used a processional for morning services at countless black churches across the country. The opening line of the renowned gospel favorite is part of the inspiration for this poem:

This Far by Faith

And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence  

to the full assurance of hope until the end,                                                    

Hebrews 6:11

“We have come this far by faith.”  

Traditional Black Gospel Song

 

Though we see truth, there is still the rest of the story,

As we strive to be all that God called us to be,

Created to be to the praise of His glory,

We walk by faith and not by what we can see.

We now rise above to view life from God’s grand scope:

Each day our faith will increase and not diminish.

With diligence to the full assurance of hope,

We will complete our course, striving toward the finish.

A great cloud of witnesses surround us to cheer

Us on from faith to faith and victory to victory.

The mighty hand of our gracious God brought us here,

For such a time as this—behold our destiny.

As we press toward the mark, we must not lose our gait.

Lyrics remind us “We have come this far by faith.”

Voices of Hope, a choir from Los Angeles under the direction of Thurston Frazier, offer a rendition of one of the most popular gospel songs of the Fifties and Sixties.

While working on a teaching related to patience as an illustration of the fruit that was in season at that particular time of my life, I read about an apple orchard that was run by Farmer Johnson in Washington State. Reading about the apples produced by this individual also inspired the following poem:

Farmer Johnson

That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who

through faith and patience inherit the promises.

Hebrews 6:12

He leadeth me, He leadeth me,
By His own hand He leadeth me;
His faithful follower I would be,
For by His hand He leadeth me.

Lyrics by Joseph H. Gilmore

Farmer Johnson owns orchards in Washington State.

His apples are renowned and said to be the best.

As scriptures remind us to labor and to rest,

This Farmer Johnson is patient and learns to wait

For the bountiful fruit of his harvest season.

Patience now abounds to complete and perfect me,

As I walk by faith, despite all that I may see.

I assess my times and unfold the real reason

For all the trials and seeming setbacks that came.

At times I felt as though being torn asunder

But like Job, I still abide and bear up under.

God yet delivers those who call upon His name.

Committed to go wherever the Lord shall send,

A faithful follower, I endure to the end.

As a youngster I recall singing this hymn “He Leadeth Me” countless times, performed here by the Michael Curb Congregation.