witness woman

by Jeff Rainwater, 20 March 2017, Basin & Hyattville, WY

Inspired by John 4:1-29
In a world that is so adept at depersonalizing and dehumanizing,
the greatest gift we can give to someone is to see, really see, them,
as Jesus saw the woman at the well.

There you are,
Witness Woman,
strong in voice,
keen of mind,
brave at heart.

I see you.

There you are,
Witness Woman,
hidden by doubt,
held down by race,
buried by innuendo,
hemmed in by

I see you.

There you are,
Witness Woman.
Cast aside jar
and fear and
You are so much
more than the
burdens you’ve

I see you.

You are my
Witness Woman,
strong, keen, and brave.
Now, drink deep!

There you are,
Witness Woman,
I see you!

some advice


by Jeff Rainwater, 8 March 2017, Cheyenne, WYimage

For a young friend
who will never read
these words:

Look to home,
wayward young man.
Empty are the accolades
cast far afield when
one so precious,
so near, is left

There is a Judge
who sees more than
Facebook posts and
smiling profiles!
Yet, there is time
to make amends
and restore what
is broken.
‘I’m so sorry…’
would be
a good

whitewashed tombs

by Jeff Rainwater, 2 March 2017, Greenwood Village, CO

I find your holiness so empty
of life, of joy, of beauty —
a weak, grating, voice
always speaking
in the negative…
cannot should not do not.
What is to fill this
empty vessel left behind
by such commands?

Who am I to be?

True holiness is found
not in absence.
Holiness is
faith trusting,
hope risking,
love embracing!
Holiness is light,
the overflowing cup,
the undeserved gift!

Instead of the border
you have drawn
deciding who is in
or who is out
thus dividing
God’s whole,
show me the center —
a vision of the best
and most and
dearest I can

For that, I would yearn
and reach and strive
and run and pray
and, yes, even
to wait
for the day
that the dead will rise –
whitewashed tombs
no more.

*inspired by a beautiful communion service, created and led by Rev. Paul Kottke, Metropolitan District Superintendent, for the Joint Mountain Sky Area Cabinet and staff present. ┬áThe service included sharing the lyrics of Betty’s Diner, written by Carrie Newcomer. (video presentation here).

thank you, my darling, forever

by Jeff Rainwater, for my beloved,
10 February 2017, Cheyenne, WY

Once upon a time
(not so long ago,
for we are not so old)
in a land far from here,
(called North Carolina)
a maiden,
both beautiful
and brave,
saved a young squire.
With but a look
and hope for more
she drew him
from his prison.
Longing for love,
yet terribly afraid,
there he had sat,
Never again!
Not every day since
a happily ever after
nor each adventure
a triumph,
for this is no
With the sunshine
there have been tears
and a few
I am sorry’s.
Yet there has also been
more than a little
and most of all,
Thank you,
my darling,

love and enemies

 5 February 2017, Cheyenne, WY
A prayer to Jesus:

I have no enemies

once I believed

until you told me

to love them.

If to know love

as You know love

is to make enemies

so be it.

A word about this poem: if you read yesterday’s poem, this one will sound familiar. It’s a little self-plagiarism or, if you will, further development. I liked yesterday’s Len but it didn’t quite go where I wanted, except for the first 4 lines.  This one, though shorter, goes where I want. May it give you courage to love as Jesus loved no matter the cost.