Did you know this is National Poetry Month? Poetry has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I wrote my first poem when I was in the fifth grade. Over the years, poetry has formed a major facet of my reflective and spiritual life through some tough and tender seasons.

Golan-Heights-Fisher-Art-Shirin-McArthurToday, somewhat in honor of poetry month, I wanted to share one of the poems I’ve included in my new free e-book, Lakeside Lessons. This e-book gathers a number of my reflections—both poetry and prose—that have arisen since I stood on the banks of Lake Kinnereth, also known as the Sea of Galilee, during our visit to the Holy Land in early 2017. You can download this e-book for free when you sign up to receive weekly notices of my blog posts (and other updates) via email.

The poem below ponders perspective. I’ve been considering perspective as I think about the next in my series of online spiritual retreats on the life and ministry of Jesus through the eyes of others. There is so much depth and richness available in the gospels and it seems that every week some new idea is arising in me—but I’ve been busy enough with editing work that I’ve just been jotting down the ideas and filing them away for later.

Our lives are like that sometimes. Our livelihoods seem to demand all our available time and energy. It’s not unlike the question I pose here. I hope you find this poem (sparked by pondering Matthew 14:13–21) provocative. What sacrifices are you making for your own spiritual nurturing and growth?


What sacrifices
Did they make—
Those five thousand souls
Who laid down their hoes
And chisels
And fish knives to
Rush out
Arrive at
Some deserted place
Ahead of
Drooping disciples
And their tireless teacher
Who somehow found strength to
Touch hearts
Fish and
Multiply some
Family lunch
So all were filled?

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