Sunday, December 25, 2011

a few of my favorite things [people]

Merry Christmas Everyone! I got to sit next to Mom & Dad today [1st service, sorry I wasn't with you Mel & Bubb] Mom came without some thing! -her wheelchair!!!! [got my gift] And a BIG thanks to Pastors Steve, Brian, Rob, & Aaron. THAT WAS AWESOME!!!!!! Loved Connie up singing too! and as my friend Donnie said, people are the best gifts!

a photo to go with that last line. [it sits in my pc room above the monitor on a shelf] From left, a painting by a friend [thanks Jenn Harvey!] I thank God for art. Melanie & Rick [aka Bubba] & the girls: Kenzie & Payton [nieces] A very small nativity. Jesus, it's your birthday -but WE got the gift!! Thanks. a copy of a pic on here already [Dad, Mom, Mick & me]. Mick & her Dad [his graduation], & Mick's Mom. Just a few of my favorite things!
Merry Christmas to all of you out there.

Thank you Jesus, for the unfairness of life. You, who lacked nothing. Came to us, who lack everything. Unlike Santa, you came to give a precious gift, to all the bad kids of the world. In order to make them good. [because sooner or later, we all are one]
It's not always comforting, that life isn't fair.
But Life wasn't fair to it's author, so I guess my odds aren't good, huh?
At least, I can rejoice about 1 unfairness.
I'm not going to hell. ...even though should.
Thank you for going through hell
so I don't have to live there.

Jesus, it's your Birthday,
but we got the gift,
thanks for wanting me [us]
so much!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

a Christmas playlist, & Count your blessings

I mentioned a few songs the other day. So I'll start off with a song from the movie I grew up watching on Christmas Eve with Mom & Dad every year.
The movie? White Christmas
Bruce Cockburn - Cry of a Tiny Babe
GLAD - In The First Light
Glen Campbell - It Must be Getting Close to Christmas
[from 1 of "the Christmas Records" played for me as a child]
And thank you Michael Buble for being a guy singing this next one!
Michael Buble - All I Want for Christmas is You
After December Slips Away [couldn't find the original singers, First Call. Donny is close though]

this is also from White Christmas, the movie...
"...when your worried,
and you can't sleep,
just count your blessings,
instead of sheep,
& you'll fall asleep
counting your blessings..."

Thank you Jesus,
for my many blessings
thank you for...
Mickey, I don't think I'll ever forget her
setting under the tree
with a green bow in her hair
my best gift
[besides you]
Mom & Dad
learning to drive
love you
I love them loving so many
Donnie, Joe, Doug, Sean,
Shelby, Beth, Jenn & Linda,
Cindy, Randy S., Matt F., Matt S.
Heather & Matt, Mel & Carol,
Mom & Dad A, Mel & Bubb,
Mare [& Ben], Maria
Kenzie & P [nieces]
Aunts & Uncles
[thank you that Uncle John Williams will be celebrating @ home!!]
Roger Dean, P.J. Crook,
King Crimson, Rich Mullins, Iona, Kemper Crabb,
U2, ...
Thank you for being you & loving me
Thank you for LWCC:
Worship Arts, Pastors Steve, Aaron, & Brian,

Thank you for inventing music...
Thank you for rest...
Love Always,

The best gifts aren't under the tree...
but they do tend to put stuff under it.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

a Christmas post

hello all.
I haven't even been on facebook much over the last few weeks. No news on the job front. Mom is back & forth right now. Going between an upset stomach, & pain from not taking pain med.'s. Got to do something new last Sat. Dad, Mom, Mick, my niece [Kenzie] & I baked Sandtarts together. That was fun. [a new tradition?]
This Christmas seems like a "Deconstructing Christmas". A lot of old traditions seem gone. Which has an element of sadness to it. On the other hand, there is excitement at new traditions that crop up. One that isn't really new, this year anyway, is that LW does a Christmas Eve offering that is different. They give it all away. Every penny. Locally, Globally, to all kinds of places. Pastor Steve says: "you can't 'out-give' God."
... try anyway. make it an inside joke between you & Him. After all, everything started out as His anyway. Isn't He the best gift we ever got? I set up my little porcelain tree, made by my Dad's mother, in my computer room. I've done this before, however, this time I put a manger under it. Then I surrounded it with pictures of family, & a painting a friend painted. This way it reminds me of the real gifts I have. God THE artist, gifting us with the ability to create art. The blessing of relationships. The tree we had when I was growing up was decorated with mostly red spheres, multicolored lights, & gold garland. To me it meant this:
Evergreen tree = tree of life
Red sphere ornaments = the blood shed so I can eat from the tree, & that blood becoming fruit that saves & nourishes
Gold garland = the streets of gold that I will one day walk on

I thought I'd post a few songs that don't get played on the radio very much...
here's one...
Christmas is Jesus
by Bryan Duncan
Christmas is Jesus
a child
for all men
from the manger
and tomb
he lay in
Christmas is Jesus
God's love
coming true
a star
from the heavens
has fallen for you...

that you
for giving yourself
for showing the world
that you love me
you gave up
what no one could ask you to
so that you could make a way
to take me there
you came here
so I can go there

that wasn't enough,
they told me
I would be an only child
that I would never have
or sisters...
they lied.
they did not realize
that nothing is impossible for you
you first gave me an army of cousins
[typical you] was not enough, either
for tomorrow
I will eat supper with my brothers
"brothers from different mothers"
they would say
...we have the same Dad, though
thank you dear Jesu,
for being beyond my wildest dreams
[only you know just how wild they are]
beyond the end of the sky,

Sunday, December 11, 2011

news, changes, etc.

sigh. Where to begin.
My wife has not only lost her job, they have denied her unemployment benefits. She is appealing this, however, it could take some time. She is looking for work. During this time, I am also looking for a new job.
Over the past few months I've been looking into simplifying life. For the time being, with all that is going on, I will mostly be posting here. When, in fact, I post. I would love to do a follow up to last year's Christmas poems. I just do not think I have it in me.

I was planning to do a photo thing. However that has been put on hold. I had won a coupon for a T-shirt. However, I have not received the shirt yet. When it comes I'll explain the whole "nifty" idea. However, till then, I have changed my photo on everything I have my hands in online. The photo @ the top of this post is my photo on: facebook,, & here. In case you're interested. As I move forward, & things settle again, I'll get back to posting regularly.

Till then, Have a wonderful Christmas & New Years.

Life is often desperate, but never hopeless - Robert Fripp

Sunday, November 20, 2011

my 2 pennies

[where to begin]
LW has Thanksgiving traditions. This was our Thanksgiving service this morning. One thing we do is cardboard testimonies. Another is Pastor Steve walks around the auditorium & allows people to say a few words of thankfulness. He got close to me & I wanted to speak, but was close to just bursting into tears of joy. My reason said so in the first service:

LW 1st service 11.20.11
[@ 1:09:24]
MOM WAS @ LW TODAY!!!! The songs were perfect. It was just a wonderful service. The food bank was low this year so we did a food drive today. Collected almost 3 tons! I'm thankful Mom was @ LW today [first time in 11 weeks!]
Thankful to all those who came to see her this morning.
Thankful for their prayers.
Thankful our church cares...about each other...our county...the world.
thankful I'm allowed to go there.
[1:20:00] thankful for an empty basement!!!
thankful I get to help, in different ways.
Thankful for growth group
Thankful for b-day parties. [Hey Big Dave, it was your b-day, but WE got the gift! you.]
Thankful for my wife.
Thankful that sometimes God takes something away & gives us something else.
[thankful Mick & I are closer even though she lost her job]
Thankful for friends I haven't heard from in years connecting on facebook.
Thankful for nieces who want Uncle Brian to go to "King Burger" with them.

Thank you so much
for parents,
who love & help out at church
for my darling wife
who's voice is my favorite song
for growth group guys
who care for,
pray for [& with] me
for a church who cares
& reminds me "it's not about us"
for our wonderful pastors
our helpful staff
for the family
both that I know & don't know
who have come to me
and spoke of their appreciation for my parents
thanks for being the ultimate parent!
THE best friend anyone could hope for
thank you dear Jesu
I needed a savior
and you said
OOO! pick me!
Thank you Jesu
for being the prince of an
un-dieing King
Thank you for being 3...
yet 1
Thank you for being unfair
I should go to hell
if life were fair
thank you for making life unfair
Thank you for saving me
from me
Thank you for all you have written into my story
and all you will write
may my story glorify you
and show others why you matter
Thank you for sending your spirit
"till, the work on Earth is done"
Thank you for being the Prince of the
un-defeatable kingdom
thank you
that I will one day
worship you
to your face
Delirious said it best:
"I was born, to kiss your feet"
thank you Oh High King God
for being you
and loving me

your kid,

Monday, November 14, 2011

poem time

Well, Mom is doing fairly well. She's hoping to go to the Doctor in 2 weeks without her wheel chair. No new job for Mick just yet, though I have begun to look as well. And I'm feeling guilty for ending a conversation with an old friend on facebook...

The Crush of Time

so little of it, sometimes
feels like I brush people off
for lack of it
good friends
flung across the continent
finally in contact & I talk for a hand full of minutes
before I feel I'm being pulled to other things.
I sign off
hoping they don't feel
as I do
about me doing it
a time for everything
Ecclesiastes says
but that time
keeps on running out on me
Feels like there's
no time
to keep time
of the time
I thought I had
oh well,
maybe next time
[did I say that the last 2 times??]
well as I told a friend
moments ago on Facebook
I gotta go
[I'm out of time one here]

b.e. noll

Saturday, November 5, 2011

a new poem

Poems out of mud

We are
rough around the edges
and not always sure
that we are doing it right
bumps, scrapes
stumbles, wobbles
a therapist friend is right
"life is hard,
wear a helmet"
I don't know where
I'm being lead
most of the time
I think the times I hate being in the most
are the times
I was born for
the times
when The Bible
from the book I own with the thinnest pages
a blanket
a fortress
a sword
perhaps at times
a velvet hammer
I need all of these
a place to hide
a weapon to fight with
a firm, but gentle nudge forward
I guess
we're all poems
poems coming out of the mud
getting cleaned off
so that we make sense
so we can share
the journey
we aren't alone
we aren't
the only ones
to stair into the darkness
and wonder
if we'll be able to come out
the other side
in one piece

by b.e. noll

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Well, Mom is home & steadily improving. She sat up to eat today. other news, my wife lost her job as of 5pm yesterday.
A co-worker said to me: "...and, your all calm with it...? WOW, how can you be so calm??" I tried to come up with something "awe inspiring" to say. You know a "bumper sticker in the making". Yeah, total blank. So much for being a poet, huh. I exhaled & simply said God. That's how. It doesn't sound that impressive. She said she'd be "freaking out". "God created the whole universe in 6 days with his mouth... how hard can it really be to get 1 little girl a job?". Then I think of Shaddrak, Meshach, & Abednigo, [Daniel 3] "We know that God can rescue us for this furnace... but even if he doesn't, we still won't bow down & worship anyone else." [ok, that's a B. Noll paraphrase, but it's not that different]

I need to go for now...
May His grace drip from your fingers,

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Beautiful Day

MOM IS HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ahhhh. I am overwhelmed today. Went to LW with my Dad [1st service]. There was an unspoken joy filling the place today especially. Different folks asking how we were feeling. 2 comments really got to me. Pastor Steve [LW's senior pastor] walked out to Dad & said: "How's my girl doing?". [btw Pastor Aaron, thanks for keeping LW's staff up to date on Mom's progress!!] Judge Kennedy, walked up & said well, there's the Noll brothers. I've missed hearing that, haven't heard something along those lines since my Grandfather went home to Jesus. [I'll tell that story sometime]
Then we walk in, & worship begins with: Joyful [as in Joyful, joyful we adore thee...]. PERFECT. I could hardly sing, we then sang Beautiful One, & How Great is the Love. Found myself changing the words near the end...
"Jesus, my faithful King
with an overjoyed heart I sing
how great is your love
how great is your love
oh, my savior..."
I later have had this song in my heart as well: Thankful Heart by Petra

...and for you all. Out there across cyberspace. Thank you as well, for your prayers. For joining me on this long journey.
I felt like singing from the rooftops....[Beautiful Day by U2]
take care all of you out there...& may tomorrow be just as beautiful...

Father God,
oh once, present, & future king
of all
my debt payer
lover of my soul
healer of my soul
oh Great Spirit of the Everlasting
journey-er with me through days
both dark & light
Thank you
a billion times over
thank you
for giving me my mother
for saving her
for bringing her home to us

Thursday, October 27, 2011

speachless [or, now my feet won't touch the ground]

from facebook:
If you heard a scream @ 11:00am today, that was me.
MOM COMES HOME SUN 11:30, THIS SUN. YEAH, WOO-HOO, THANK YOU EVER SO MUCH YAHWEH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!I've been telling everyone. Not to seem too campy, but I have a line from "Life in Technicolor pt 2" by Coldplay running through my head today: "...gravity release me, oh don't ever hold me down, now my feet won't touch, the ground..." As well as a worship song we sing @ LW: Chris Tomlin's "This is Our God"
"...He brings peace to our madness
comfort in our sadness
this is our God...
so call upon His name
he is mighty to save
this is our God
Lord & savior
This is our God..."
so.... um, I'm slightly ecstatic. have energy like I've been mainlining Mtn. dew for... oh, about 4 days strait. I don't think Christmas gets me this excited.

Bridge to eternity

...what can I say
oh God?
how can words
tell you how glad I am
that you want me in your life
that you built eternity
for us to enjoy together
some days
it's so dark here
thank you
for telling me
over & over
that the darkness
will expire

thank you
for dieing for me
for all those I love
for rising again
for killing death
single handedly
a bridge to eternity
a nail scarred hand
reaching out
from forever
thank you
for being such a paradox
the one & only real, true son
of the one, true, uncreated God
dieing to make us
sons of this same
magnificent, high King-God
heirs, with you
of the undefeatable kingdom
thank you for loving your enemies
[for we all were @ one time]

thank you
Father God
Redeemer Jesus
for giving us
your Spirit, the comforter
to hold us till you return

Thank you Spirit
for walking this
difficult road with us
speaking to... yourself
on our behalf
in your own
unknowable language
guiding us
in the way everlasting

beyond the end of the sky,

[...or, to be brief, oh God...
thank you
for being you,
and loving me]

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

a short update

...well, Mom is slowly recovering. She seems tired when I arrive. I tell her it's ok to sleep... but she fights it anyway. I never imagined feeding my mother. It's becoming a bit of a habit over the past few weeks. Only because she's tired. She holds my hands a lot lately. She, like my wife, loves that I am perpetually "warmer than the average person". For the record, I do wear a coat from time to time. Just not as often as most people. Anyway, I want to post a poem...however, I am in the middle of writing 2 of them. 1 to my wife, and another about...[how do I describe it?] "shedding your false skin [s]". Sometimes we hide so well, we actually hide from ourselves. So it's centered around a chameleon. I have that in the title, somewhere. So, I should go for now. I'm trying to better regulate my sleeping & waking.
take care, be inspired, enjoy fall -I am.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Saw some cool tributes to Steve Jobs today. An apple with a bite out of it, among flowers. Another with "Bye" carved out of it in cursive. I was struck by the facebook thumbs down. Yep, death 9,999,999 people dislike this. My favorite was a 19 year old from Japan. He took the apple logo & where the bite was missing put a silhouette of Steve Jobs' face.
I'm a writer, I guess. and I love mp3 players, because I love music.
So I'll put it this way.

Thank you Yahweh, for inventing Steve Jobs.

oh... & as I had a very "ransom note looking" post last night. I'll clarify
Mom is in Rehab now. She is doing well there. she got to set outside here, on a beautiful day. Walked a bit. And did well in physical therapy today.

Take care out there,

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My facebook post tonight:
Hello everyone. Mom has finally moved to rehab. It was a good day here. She is adjusting to her new surroundings. She's a bit sore. It was a kind of rough day for her. So visiting might be best held off for a few days. Till she gets situated. Thanks again for your prayers, & encouragement.
I posted a while back about a favorite Rich Mullins song. Here it is.
I posted on facebook tonight a song that fit how I felt yesterday:
U2 Some Days are better than others

Sorry this is sketchy.
I don't really feel good. So, this'll be it for tonight.
My facebook post tonight:
Hello everyone. Mom has finally moved to rehab. It was a good day here. She is adjusting to her new surroundings. She's a bit sore. It was a kind of rough day for her. So visiting might be best held off for a few days. Till she gets situated. Thanks again for your prayers, & encouragement.
I posted a while back about a favorite Rich Mullins song. Here it is.
I posted on facebook tonight a song that fit how I felt yesterday:
U2 Some Days are better than others

Sorry this is sketchy.
I don't really feel good. So, this'll be it for tonight.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

to hide... or not to?

Well...1st Mom: [from facebook]
Mom is still in the hospital tonight. I'm bummed, to be honest. She's doing well. Mick went in for me tonight. Said she walked for a little, with her walker. I'm told she will be moving tomorrow. I'm not sure I believe it now. I kinda want to just hear that in the past tense at this point. We talked for a little on the phone, but she was groggy, so I left her to sleep. Prayerfully tomorrow there will be forward movement.

I was surprised by someone saying I was hiding. I don't feel like I'm trying to, anymore anyway. I was intimidated, at first, with sharing in general.
I've been meaning to..."prepare you all". I put my name in for a contest, online. Never thought I'd I also didn't think about what I'd be agreeing to, if I did. I did win. So, sometime around the end of Oct. beginning of Nov. a picture of me will be on a website. This is the custom of the site. To post pictures of previous winners, with their winnings. I think I've found a unique way to do it. And, yes, I thought of posting a pic of my hands holding my prize... it just seems too lame. I'm going to let them post my name & picture first. When this happens, I'll link to it.
It will be the 3rd time I've been pictured somewhere public.
The first time, was on TV. Not even 30 sec. I'm decorating a tree. Behind local Wgal 8 TV personalities, Kim Lemon & Doug Allen. [I think it Was Doug Allen with her]
The second was a magazine cover. I can say, with much certainty, that most of you have never even heard of the magazine. Hoard's Dairyman was the magazine. The picture was taken at Empire Farm Days, in "upstate New York" as they say. Mom or I probably still have it somewhere.
So this will be the third. Why hide? I've asked myself that since recent listens to Zooropa, the song, from the U2 disc of the same name. In which Bono sings:
"...I've been hiding,
what am I hiding from?..."
I guess I'd have to tell you of some dark days in my life for you to "get it".
Those days... are long behind me now. So I guess if there has been any mystery to who I am, it'll be over when that picture shows up. I'm not scared really. Maybe I should be. Something else my Mother said once comes to mind as well.
"he who has nothing to hide, hides nothing."
And... now I feel like I've gone to great lengths to say nothing really. Except that I've won something, there will be a picture of me holding it [you may or may not be impressed]. You will be able to see it.
Till then enjoy the leaves, I know I will...

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sunday supper

Looks like Mom will go to rehab tomorrow if there is a bed available!!! The Doctor said there is no "medical need for her to be in the hospital anymore"! YEA GOD!!!! So tomorrow or Tues. she will be moved. She did have a slight fall today. So she is sore. More so than she has been. She's still looking good. I am so ecstatic!
Oh... & I have a poem in Inklings called Unique.You can visit Inspire[d] the arts @ LW by clicking on it. on the right hand side is inklings. Click on the cover & read down through. Enjoy, I especially enjoyed this one for some reason. So, as L.L. Barkatt has on in & around Monday... this is a "Sunday edition".

I set here
on a Sunday evening
gazing at the colorful cover
reminding me
of the season
we are moving toward
I laugh
as I remember
earlier hearing
an artistic co-worker & friend
"Brian's is on pg 23"
to my Dad
and we laughed
Mom will read it later
during her last or second to last day
at the hospital
as I open it
the timer goes off
I open the sliding glass door
walk out, open the grill
and lay supper on it
on tin foil
re-set the timer
add flavor
close the lid
and get back to the booklet
ooo, an Anne Lamott quote
I continue page skipping
reading of poems
about worship
a story about a hike
[realizing I'd love to go
based on the writer's description!]
-ops! timer is going off again!
I skip page 23 altogether
[as I'll remember it when I read it again]
I read
I stop & check or flip supper
I read of Sabbath Location
and my mind wanders to the
Sacred Path under construction
calling to mind some of the pix
I've seen of it
I nod in agreement with the writing
ohh, the grill smells good!
I am interrupted for the evening
supper is done
and I'm not!

by b. e. noll

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

broken poems

Just sitting here

as I am
my mind is awash
in the sea of names
of people who are
praying for my family
the gladness of having
a group of people
for us
I find myself thankful
for Living Word
the people
the care,
& love
that cannot be avoided there
the ability
to learn
without being trampled on
jacked-up against the wall,
to "make me" into something
...that I'm just not
for Jesus
wanting me
in spite of...
"the long & painful list"
of who I'm not,
what I have done,
I haven't

Holy Spirit...
I want
is you
you are...
the only one
who can withstand
the storms
that rage [have raged] inside of me
the only one
who knows who
I am
& loves me anyway
I want YOU
I need you
so bad
I can taste it
You are
what I was looking for
I tried to purchase "you"
I tried to climb to you
I tried to rebel against everyone
to see you
to think incredible thoughts
so I could understand you
I tried to be everyone's friend
everyone's anything
Yet, you have been here
all along
Loving me
do not deserve
I'm glad you still want me
want to live with me
in me
through me
I want you
I need you
are what makes me
worth anything
If I am fun,
it's your fault
If I am intelligent,
it's your fault
If I am great
at anything
it's your fault
I'm saved
it's your fault
I will live forever,
it's your fault
I have the greatest parents,
it's your fault
it's your fault
without you
what would be worth looking at?
without you
why write anything?

thank you, Jesu
for being you,
& loving me
b.e. noll

well, another poem will be published in LW's inklings booklet. I'll link to it when it comes online.
Sorry for the fragmentedness of these. I just needed to write tonight. Now, I should go. I've been on here a bit too long.

Monday, September 26, 2011

an ongoing story...

Well, Mom is doing much better. She sat up to eat on Sun. Took a short walk down the hall today. She is changing med.s [slowly off 1 & onto another]. Her platelets are coming up. She's @ 145 & needs to be @ 150. So things are looking good. I'm thankful for all the visitors she's had. All the prayers, for her recovery. She's going to get a blister on her foot looked at tomorrow that's slightly painful. I've been trying to write something... & I'm just not getting it. The words aren't there tonight. Perhaps later it will come. So for now, I guess I'll "let this be it". I'm tired... yet if I may... I'll leave you with a song that seems to stick with me lately. If today was your last day by Nickelback
I really like the line:
"..if today was your last day
& tomorrow was to late
could you say good-bye to yesterday?..."
The video is interesting as well.

Well... I guess I'll sign off for now.
May His grace drip from your fingers,

Thursday, September 22, 2011

a harmony poem [at least in title]

2 things to share here...
1. another song:
by Kemper Crabb
from the disc The Vigil

You are my God
And I am your man
And I will worship you
With the works of my hand
And the thoughts of my mind
And the love of my heart

If the world could know
If they could understand
that Ah, the exquisite touch
Of the Creator's hand
Brings a blur to my eye
But makes my vision clear

Ring, rainbow ring
Encircles the throne
Fiery ring of love
Around your throne..."

2. I wrote this early this morning. Thinking on many things. Thankful for the ways God "shows up" in my days....

The Shore of Uncertainty

I am suddenly
onto a lonely beach
waves of doubt
crash over me
I sit here
drenched in doubt
I struggle
to get out
from under
the waves
then suddenly
I wipe my eyes
the waves
I can still hear
still see
they are distant
I have pulled myself away from them
have I?
I suddenly become aware
of another presence
I turn to face Him
that I didn’t pull me away
He did
my “ever present help in time of need”
I sit
next to Him
He holds me
The waves still crash
I still see them
I still hear them
He is closer
calming me
which is every bit as good
as calming the storm
[maybe even better]

b.e. noll

May His grace drip from your fingers,

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

a story continuing to unfold...

Well, Mom is back in the hospital. In case I didn't say so here yet. There are "other turmoils" in my life @ this moment, as well. She has a blood clot. They put in an "umbrella". near her lung. She will be in pain for a while. Though last night she said her pain was a 7, tonight it was a 6. Which is good. She also stood for a whole minute. Which is progress. Many have said different things to comfort me. Some trying to put words to God's actions. I don't have any. God exists outside of both space & time... I've never been outside of either one. So, to some extent, I really don't "understand who I'm dealing with". I do see, as He sees. I cannot understand, as He does.
Music is a way I try to... cope/ put words or dialogue to things. How I get things out of myself. So... what songs come to mind here? Merciful Eyes, Blue Skies, & Restore My Soul by The Choir ...somewhat. Yet... as I continue to live [& hopefully grow] I'm confronted by an oddity. Songs to God seem to come to mind. I especially loved singing "It is Well With My Soul", among other hymns recently in church.
Tonight on my way to growth group, I had in some music by Kemper Crabb. I'll leave you with one of the songs...

[actually it's easier to link to my previous post of the lyrics, here]

sure of uncertainty

I certainly
don't know
what your up to
I don't know
why you haven't
snapped your fingers
"and fixed it yet"
I don't always know
why I can't understand you
I can't leave you either
[where would I go?!?!]
Here I am
in an uncertain place
the only thing I know
for sure
is I'm uncertain
how this will turn out
I don't know why
why her?
why now?
why this?
All I can do
is remember
that funny story
from when I was a kid
and didn't know an answer
rather than lie
or make one up...
what does idk mean?"
"it means I Don't Know"
...and I don't
you know
I don't know
what your doing
I don't know
how you'll use this
but I've watched
I've read your book
I know
you will
of this
I am
also certain

...while I wait
for answers
to the prayers of many
will you
sit with me?
If nothing else
right now
just sit here
with me

b.e. noll

Monday, September 12, 2011

experiencing a Monday

A Monday experience

my new cell rings
it announces that it's Dad
Mom is officially home
"Maybe you could stop by
and see her
but only for a little bit"
my day
a restful harmony
flows under everything
Yahweh has seen fit
to allow me the blessing
of my Mother's safe return
to her home
I stop by
listening to the "sounds of home"
feeling the spirit
that always seems to permeate the house
I hold Mom
remembering this action
from multiple points
in my life
my whole body seems
to exhale
the last few weeks
a long holding of my breathe
waiting for this moment
Dad making arrangements
Always looking out for her
[and me]
No more visiting hours
no more elevators
just 1 ...or 3 steps
depending on which entrance I use
Yet I am thankful
for the army
of prayers,
of support
that has been brought to the surface
through all of this
I'm thankful for a
more normal Monday

Thank You Jesu
for this Monday, especially
B. E. Noll

[My Mother arrived home safe, sound, & slightly tired today. She seems completely herself again. Which is a gift. Thank you for your prayers.
I feel more rested myself... or perhaps the word should be "settled".
Every breathe today, is a whispered thank you to God... a "breathing hug".]

Sunday, September 11, 2011


"...It's early fall,
there's a cloud
on the New York skyline
dragged across
a yellow line..."

-from The Hands that Built America by U2

Yes... I remember. I remember pulling weeds. I worked second shift, as a printing press operator. I can still see the sunny day it my back yard. Mick came out to me... I knew something was up, she seemed...different. Brian, you need to come in & see this. A plane just hit the World Trade Center. " a little Cessna?" "No, like a passenger jet. You're not gonna believe it, just come see." As I watched... I saw a replay...& then a silhouette of another passenger jet... "Honey, there's another one." She didn't believe me at first, until the announcer said "oh, God, another one hit -a second plane just it the South Tower..." It was every channel...every radio station. I think the hole country, the world, were just begging to hear the death toll go down.

I watched the movie World Trade Center. I still am captivated, by the Marine, walking through the debris... [in a commanding, loud tone] "This is the United States Marines. If you can hear my voice, yell or tap." Over & over & Over again. He finally hears something. When he gets to talk to 2 port authority officers trapped 20 ft. below him, they ask him "...the Marines? what mission sends the Marines here??" ..."You are my mission." Boy, does that sound like Jesus... or what? Walking through the Hell... you find yourself in... to tell you.... the cross, was for you. You are His mission. You are the reason... why He bothered to come here... why He bothered to die... I heard someone say to me one day: "If Jesus was God - or is God - why didn't He save Himself?" "because if He had... He wouldn't have saved anyone else."
Is love crazy? tell me.

I'm trying to write a poem for just feels too big....for words.

I began with U2... so also, I will end with them...

Peace on Earth
[ from the disc All That You Can't Leave Behind]

Heaven on Earth
We need it now
I'm sick of
all of this
Hanging around
Sick of sorrow
Sick of pain
Sick of hearing
again and again
That there's gonna be
Peace on Earth...

...Jesus could you take the time
To throw a drowning man a line
Peace on Earth
Tell the ones
who hear no sound
Whose sons are living in the ground
Peace on Earth
No who's or whys
No-one cries
like a mother cries
For peace on Earth
She never got
to say goodbye
To see the colour in his eyes
Now he's in the dirt
Peace on Earth

They're reading names out over the radio
All the folks the rest of us won't get to know
Sean and Julia, Gareth, Ann and Breda
Their lives are bigger, than any big idea...

...Jesus this song you wrote
The words are sticking in my throat
Peace on Earth
Hear it every Christmas time
But hope and history won't rhyme
So what's it worth?
This peace on Earth

Peace to you, wherever you are, whatever you are going through,
B.E. Noll

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Mom cried earlier. The nurse asked if she was in pain. No, She's sitting up & not feeling ANY pain what-so-ever. She's overjoyed. She's been sitting in an easy chair for 1.5 hrs. now!!
...she could feel some pain over the next 24 hrs. I'm just so very glad that God has taken care of her. The surgery went well, however, it was to be 1.5 hrs. they started @ about 10:45 & ended @ 1:05. Needed to do more than first thought. But it went extremely well. THANKS FOR YOUR PRAYERS!!!!!!

Ok. So Flooding wise, my basement is dry -yea! however, many have flooded basements in our area -& they are the blessed ones. As some areas have been evacuated. Tonight on WGAL 8 is the first time, I can remember, hearing that we have States of Emergency. States -plural! New 8 is on in the background. They just rescued some people stranded on the roof of a pick up, that's stuck on a bridge [not that you can see the bridge, mind you]. It's to rain again tomorrow.
...Noah called, the ark is on back order...
Yes, when the going gets tough, the tough... tell jokes. I was re-writing classic rock songs today @ work... "...come float away, come float away, come float away with me..." I'll tell you what "come on & take a free ride" has a WHOLE new meaning here. And the water park is closer than it used to be. The down side, of course, is that I own the "log" I'm riding in the flume ride!!!

well, I must go. It's my wedding anniversary. 15yrs!

take care out there in PA!!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

a different visual for a lyric

I hope it's ok to do something I have been thinking of doing for quite some time now. I believe people who read this regularly [well, as regularly as I post on it] know that my musical tastes are rather wide. The following is for me, probably more than for you, it is an exercise in trying to ...print lyrics in a fashion that will deliver a similar effect as listening to the song itself. As I recently ordered my copy of the 40th anniversary of Discipline by King Crimson. It might even be appropriate. This is the last song on the disc. I hope it speaks to you...

I do remember one thing...

It took hours
and hours
and hours

By the time I was done with it
I was so involved

I didn't know what to think.

I carried it around with me for days
and days

and days
games -Like

not looking at it

for a
whole day
And then..

looking at it. To see if I still liked it.

I did.

I repeat myself when under stress. I repeat myself when under stress.
I repeat myself when under stress. I repeat myself when under stress.
I repeat..

The more I look at it
The more I like it.

I do think it's good.

The fact is..
No matter how closely I study it

No matter how I take it a p a r t

No matter how

It remains consistent.
I wish you were here to see it.

I like it.
I hope you enjoyed this -B

surgery, pt...?

Well, Mom did not have surgery today. Unless something unforeseen happens, she will have surgery tomorrow. 10 - 10:30am, 1.5 hrs for surgery, 1.5 hrs for recovery. Sorry, I feel a bit wrung out. And in the middle of being in the middle of things...

Monday, September 5, 2011

reflecting on "God isn't Santa"

Well, Mom did not have her surgery last Fri. She will have her surgery tomorrow. She was on blood thinners so they could not do it last Fri. ...So when our teaching pastor yesterday talked about all the things we cannot control. I had to smirk. I've had time to calm down. Pastor Steve also talked briefly about our Alpha course. A place to ask questions. This usually is for those who don't know God, yet it speaks of the hard questions that come up in life. And after the let down of Mom not having surgery, this blogger..."fell to those questions". Summed up so well in this one:
"If God can fix everything...why doesn't he???" I wish you could here this said the way I have. So from Hard to get by Rich Mullins, to Better Than A Hallelujah, & Somewhere Down the road by Amy Grant flooded to mind after a while. Times like these are why I love the Psalms. Because 1 page you read of how great God is, mighty & powerful... the next page [sometimes in the same psalm] you read God...where are you? why don't you fix this, like now please?!?!?
Knowing God is not knowing the answers,
it's being friends with the one who does.
I've said this since my sister-in-law lost her twins. When asked: "are you mad at God? Cause it's ok if you are".
I answered: "No.
I know God too well to be mad at Him,
But not well enough to know what He's doing."
Obviously, this is still true. Many verses come to my mind Isaiah 40:12-26,
Psalms 139, 147:3... the list goes on.
Fri. from about 12:40 on I was just exhausted, & sick of the brokenness of this world. I was ready for Rev.21:1-6.
So, God isn't Santa. He doesn't just have a dorky smile waving a peace sign.
Truthfully, these moments are good for my relationship with Him. When the prayer is answered:
"not now" or "no".
When a friend: does something that betrays trust, or isn't as close of a friend as I thought [or maybe is too close for my good].
I go off by myself... & get away from every one I can... then I'm left with only 2 people... me & Yahweh. [God, The Father, Him who sits on the throne & holds the key of David, The Master, King God, etc.] And, at least 1 of us is never wrong.
Then I rant, to Him. I fall apart... [no one talks of yelling prayers, why not?...]
Then, something happens. He just listens. He's just there... with me. We feel closer [at least to me we do]. Because He's the God you can be real with.
Friday was a day I'm glad God is the way He is. Because that's what I needed. For Him to listen & draw near. A friend from church once said: "Sometimes, God can be can be closer than your skin." Friday was a day like that. [thanks for your words Connie]
Awesome God is not my favorite Rich Mullins song.
My Favorite? We are not as strong as we think we are.
Sunday was nice. To be in church. To be sitting next to my Sister-in-law & Brother-in-law. To be singing How Great Thou Art & How Great is our God.
[My favorite hymn? Great is thy Faithfulness.]

thank you
for not being
or plastic
thank you
that You created me
the other way around
thank you for coming
to me
even if I wished you'd come
to my rescue
Thank you
that even though
you don't answer all of my prayers
with a yes
Even though You don't give me
"all the answers"
You gave me the most important ones
Can we live together forever?
Can you save me?
thank you
for those yes'

B.E. Noll

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Mother's voyage

Well, Mom will have surgery tomorrow morning. 10 - 10:30, they will remove the cyst, work on her spine, & hopefully this will greatly improve her situation. It will take about 2 hours. Then an hour of recovery. She'll stay in till Tues. Hopefully Tues. we will bring her home. She's made friends with the nurses. Though, those who know her will laugh, Mom makes friends everywhere she goes. I know some who read this blog don't necessarily worship God, please know I'm not trying to shove Him down your throat. Yet, I'm not going to hide my belief in Him. And... I need Him, more than He'll ever need me.

Please give the surgeons, nurses, & others involved
wonderful, restful sleep tonight
guide their thoughts, hands, & actions tomorrow
as they work on my precious Mother
Please let this give her the relief she needs
for that will give Dad, myself, & her
"army of children" the relief we need.
Holy Spirit
fill that operating room
give it a peace
that peace I have felt on occasion
reach into Mom & help to heal her
be in the rooms with Mom
walk through this with her
may she feel your presence
as she goes through her entire day
and may it bring her peace & calm
help them get everything done in there that they need to
touch her & heal her
help her to walk through recovery well
help her to know how many of us
have been touched by her love for you.

Thank you once again for my families
Mom & Dad,
The Nolls,
The Amspachers,
growth groups,
you have blessed me so very much

beyond the end of the sky,

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

praying for my Mother

My mother went into the hospital on Fri. Diagnosed with a trifecta. She has a cyst about 1 & a half inches in diameter [in her back], a slipped disc, & her spine is shrinking. Now, it is normal as you grow older to have it shrink top to bottom... her's is shrinking in diameter. Just got home from seeing her. She is in terrible pain. She got an epidural, however it should take about 24 - 48 hours to "kick in".

Dearest Yahweh
wrap your loving arms around mother
unfold your peace on her
tuck her in with your grace
fill her room with your presence
let her breathe in your healing touch
expelling the pain & agony
please take her pain away
hold her during the hours that I cannot
thank you sweetest Jesu
for the gift of this woman
as my mother
give rest to her aching bones
sooth her muscles
with a whisper from your lips
please, also
be with my Dad
thank you for sharing him with me
thank you for supper together
for our church family
who have gently closed ranks around us
standing in the wings
"at the ready"
for co-workers
who even with their looks say
"we're here"
thank you for my extended family
who, through you,
are here with us
as we pray up a storm
thank you that we can shower you
with prayer
thank you for listening
for wanting us
for loving us,
not just to death...
but beyond it.


Sunday, August 7, 2011

finally a new poem...

The stillness of nature

Such a safe harbor
this place called nature
it’s soft symphony
beckoning me to be still
to slow down
to breathe deep its fragrance of peace
to walk in a lostness
that is peacefully enjoyable
to slowly experience
the unfolding artwork
before my eyes
the colors that sooth me
It’s creator
coming beside me as I walk
whispering to me
or wordlessly
we walk
enjoying each other’s company
for far too short of a time period…