More Than These

More Than These

by Desmond E. R. Ottley


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781467043885
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Publication date: 10/10/2011
Pages: 136
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.32(d)

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A Book of Poems to Encourage and Inspire


Copyright © 2011 Desmond E. R. Ottley
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4670-4388-5

Chapter One


    The beauty and order in nature are met
    In vivid examples all round us; and yet
    We take them for granted, their value ignore,
    And oft disregard them as sand on a shore.

    The crocus, the tulip, the bright daffodil,
    The snowdrop, the iris, the peony, the squill,
    All these in their season start flowering on cue,
    Most wondrously signaled when their time is due.

    The white apple blossoms, the promise of fruit,
    The young thorn-filled rosebush fresh sprung from
        the root,
    The busy nest-building by birds on the wing,
    Proclaim with assurance the arrival of spring.

    The hummingbird hovering the nectar to take,
    Rough stones water-smoothed at the edge of the lake,
    The rose-colored sunset, the starlit night sky,
    Are signatures of the Designer on high.

    The order and beauty we see in our world
    Exist not by chance. They are God's flag unfurled
    To signal to all who are willing to see
    The scope of Omnipotent Divinity.

      (2) ROADBLOCKS

    Go to the ant. It has a skill profound
        To persevere.
    It goes straight through, above, below, around;
        It shows no fear.
    It never will give up or seek retreat,
    When it encounters roadblocks at its feet.

    The tender root, obstructed in its growth,
        Detects a crack.
    Pushing and growing, gently it does both
        To keep on track.
    Unyieldingly advancing without sound,
    When it encounters roadblocks in the ground.

    The salmon swims upstream to reach the place
    Where it was spawned.
    Southward birds fly, oft at a strenuous pace,
        Just to be warmed.
    They never will give up even for a day,
    When they encounter roadblocks in their way.

    Whenever you begin life's hill to climb
        To reach a goal,
    Foes will arise to challenge life and limb
    And vex your soul.
    Resist the urge to quit. Just persevere.
    Trust in the One who bids you "Have no fear".

      (3) WATER

    It cleanses each blemish, it quenches the fire,
    It purges the impure, yet fashions deep mire.
    It nourishes life that would otherwise die,
    Yet, left uncontrolled, creates reasons to cry.

    When clean, it refreshes and promotes new growth.
    When stagnant, it harbours the pests which we loathe.
    Controlled, it produces much good for our use;
    Unbridled, it spreads such disastrous abuse.

    Like water, we all are the carriers inside
    Of virtuous goodness which cleanses life's tide.
    But goodness won't issue unless we ensure
    It's garnered in vessels kept wholesome and pure.

    Such wholeness and purity can only be
    Supplied and sustained when, with honesty, we
    Submit our whole self and relinquish our claim
    To personal goodness, and trust just His Name.

    Like water, we surely can nourish the ground
    Where wholeness is lacking and discord is found.
    But we can spread poison around us if we
    Live life with abandon and set our tongues free.

    As water flows gently through valleys and rifts,
    Disposing of refuse, depositing gifts
    Of health-giving moisture, so we can improve
    And moisten the world in our corner with love.

    If sadly our life becomes sullied, be sure
    It can be renewed and made clean as before.
    As vaporized water is turned into rain,
    Our lives can be changed and made useful again.


    Stupendous height, amazing depth
    Beyond our comprehensive view;
    Such unimagined length and breadth
    So far removed from what we knew.
    The worlds beyond our tiny sphere
    Affirm the Maker's marvellous care.

    From any point on our fair earth,
    Thousands of stars we can behold.
    They form one vast galactic berth
    With billions more, so we are told.
    Can we e'er grasp the Maker's power,
    The same that cares for us each hour?

    Our universe, the scholars say,
    Consists of these vast mysteries.
    For every grain of sand that lay
    On earth, there are ten galaxies.
    Who can perceive such boundless space?
    'Tis boundless as the Maker's grace.

    The One whose power such space designed,
    Is the same One whose life was spent
    To rescue me. Let now my mind
    Trust the Divine Omnipotent.
    Who dares to spurn the One whose face
    Keeps watch o'er such unending space?

    Matchless Creator, holy Lord,
    Unrivalled Architect divine,
    Open my eyes, empower your word,
    That I may know all power is Thine.
    May I acknowledge that your love
    Is endless as the space above.

      (5) SALT

    O God, Creator without fault,
    Who gives each living being its worth,
    You have declared we are as salt
    That richly flavours life on earth.

    Through your kind grace and matchless power,
    We can, like salt, enrich the taste
    Of daily life each passing hour,
    For those whose lives are touched by waste.

    Give us the wisdom to preserve
    The willingness to live for You.
    That we may always seek to serve,
    And spread our love like morning dew.

    Help us to live, to strive, to pray
    That always we'll be close to you.
    So that whate'er we do or say,
    Will mirror what you'll have us do.

    Give us the strength to do what's right.
    Give us deep longing to assist
    All those who falter in the fight
    To thrash sin's foes whom they resist.

    At times when our own fervour fades,
    When strenuous efforts bear no fruit,
    Help us to lift the hindering shades
    To let God's love play like a flute.

    May we persist in offering aid
    To all whose need we can relieve.
    May we, despite the outcomes feared,
    Spread spiritual salt through life's great sieve.


    'Twas on a bed of manger hay
    He lay when He was born;
    Not in a palace splendidly
    Bedecked with gold that morn.

    'Twas to some shepherds in the fields,
    Not rulers of the day,
    That angels told the joyful news
    And sang their tuneful lay.

    His parents were of lowly breed,
    His home no king's delight.
    Yet threats against His life were fierce,
    And led to secret flight.

    His birth was part of God's wise plan
    To right humanity's wrong.
    Yet we reject the effectual cure
    Promised through ages long.

    We strive and toil with restless zeal
    Life's ills to overcome;
    We wrestle with, and worry o'er
    The storms that touch our home.

    We oft forget the reason why
    The Babe of Bethlehem
    Was sent to earth that winter's night,
    A fragile, heavenly Gem

    It was to give light to all those
    Who in death's shade do sit,
    And guide the feet of them who seek
    To have life's torch relit.

    O may we now rededicate
    Our lives, each treasured gem,
    To Him who patterned love for hate,
    That Child from Bethlehem.
    More Than These


    Amazed, she listened to the words
    That deeply touched her soul.
    "You'll bear a Son" whose life would fill
    A predetermined role.
    "How can that be?" she gently asked
    The radiant angel guest.
    His answer touched her faith-filled heart.
    She knew God's will was best.

    From that day forth her life was changed.
    She pondered in her heart
    The trust that God had placed in her,
    How best she'd do her part.
    It mattered not what others thought,
    How difficult or rough
    The road ahead would be for her.
    God's trusting was enough.

    God's will so oft disturbs our life
    With sudden urgency,
    Giving new purpose to our thoughts,
    As 'twas for young Mary.
    The child within changed everything;
    New compass and new chart.
    Trusting in God's most sacred word,
    She lived with a pure heart.

    That's how it is when Christ comes in
    And takes His rightful place
    Within our lives. We abhor sin
    And fully trust His grace.
    Whene'er we think of Jesu's birth
    And joyful carols sing,
    Let's not forget He came to earth
    To be our Lord and King.

    Let us in all things seek His will,
    And His just rule obey.
    In word and deed, desire and thought,
    Let us walk in His Way.
    As helpless as a child He came
    To show us how to live.
    We now must honour His great name,
    And our best worship give.
    More Than These

      (8) NO ROOM

    Our Wonderful Saviour, Redeemer and Counsellor,
    Was born in a manger where animals fed.
    His parents exhausted and weary with travel
    Could find no safe place to lay his infant head.

    "No room!" That's the message so silently given,
    When we have no moments to spend with our Lord.
    When hours are consumed with demands for our attention,
    We're left at day's end with an impaired record.

    What is it that robs us of time for devotion?
    Is it our weak faith that God's promise is true?
    'Tis written: "Seek first the true kingdom of heaven,
    And all needed things will be added to you."

    Go forth now with new faith. You've been with the Christ-child.
    Like magi, return by a new way to life.
    Avoid evil influence and spread wholesome incense,
    The myrrh of compassion, the gold that spurns strife.


    Weary and famished from such a long journey,
    Needing no more than refreshment and rest,
    All she could get was a spot in a manger
    Hardly befitting such kingly a guest.

    Princes and monarchs are hosted in splendour,
    But all He got was the baa-ing of sheep.
    Though hailed by angels as Prince above princes,
    Mother and child on rough straw had to sleep.

    Still, after centuries of hearing about Him,
    How He cured people and sighted the blind,
    How He was crucified and was arisen,
    He is rejected with treatment unkind.

    Let not desire to flourish displace Him.
    Let not your pride cause your faith to depart.
    No better thing can you do but receive Him.
    Give Him first place and the key to your heart.

      (10) EVEN IN A DREAM

    Sometimes we're forced to make a serious choice,
    When circumstances clash with deafening voice.
    We may take action but remain unsure,
    Still searching for assurance and much more,
        Even in a dream.

    Like Joseph we may ponder and decide;
    Delay would worsen the oncoming tide.
    But like him we should willingly apply
    The counsel when it comes from God on high,
        Even in a dream.

    Sometimes we are so focused on a plan
    Which we've researched at length as best we can,
    That we are blind to dangers lurking round,
    And miss the warning signs that can be found
    Even in a dream.

    Like the Wise Men we boldly seek our goal,
    Not conscious of deceptions we've been sold.
    But like them we should willingly apply
    The counsel when it comes from God on high,
        Even in a dream.

    How oft grave danger lies outside our door,
        Threatening our homes although we feel secure.
    We live oblivious to the signs that show
    Great peril's near. We miss the warning glow
        Even in a dream.

    In all things may we confidently trust
    That in our crisis times the True and Just
    Will surely resupply our every need,
    And furnishing heaven's aid, will intercede,
          Even in a dream.


    Even though the crowd was pressing
        Round You near the billowy sea,
    You still sensed the need that reached You
        When you queried: "Who touched Me?"
    When we find life's woes oppressive
        And we struggle for relief,
    Make us mindful of Your question;
        Keep us free from unbelief.

    As You taught the truths of heaven,
        Doubters found it hard to stay.
    But You challenged Your disciples:
        "Will you also go away?"
    When our faith becomes diluted
        By rejection of God's word,
    Make us mindful of Your question;
        Keep us loyal to You, Lord

    When ten men received Your healing,
        Only one did take the time
    To return to thank and praise You.
        Hence You asked: "Where are the nine?"
    When our days are filled with blessings,
        And our life's cup runneth o'er,
    Make us mindful of Your question.
        Keep us thankful evermore.

    As You dined on that bright morning,
        With disciples now at ease,
    Lovingly You asked of Peter,
        "Do you love Me more than these?"
    When the gems of earth delude us,
        And our love for You grows cold,
    Make us mindful of Your question.
        Keep us safe within the fold.

      (12) CLAIMS OF JESUS

    I am the Door. I bid you boldly enter,
        Trusting in Me, even when all efforts fail.
    No longer will defeat ensure surrender,
        The Door gives hope that surely you'll prevail.

    I am the Way, the Truth, the Life. O Listen!
    You need not stay upon the path you tread.
    If satisfaction and real joy evade you,
        Follow My Way and live true life instead.

    I am the Bread of Life. The food I offer
        Will strengthen and equip you for the strife
    Which you must face each day and each tomorrow.
        Seek now My nourishment for deeper life.

    I am the Vine. You are My precious branches.
        Vainly you try to bear fruit all alone,
    For without Me you can indeed do nothing.
        Abide in Me. Ask and it will be done.


    Come unto Me, you that are spent and weary.
        You need not sink 'neath loads you find too heavy.
    Put on My yolk! It's easier to carry.
            Come unto Me, now.

    O Come and Dine, if for My food you hunger.
        I will supply your needs, your faith make stronger.
    Life's crumbs need not suffice you any longer.
        O Come and Dine, now.

    Take up the Cross and follow Me in earnest,
        Willing to sacrifice all you hold dearest.
    You who would fight for truth, to Me are nearest.
            Take up the Cross, now.

    Come ye apart with Me. Leave stress behind you.
        Busyness jades. Spurn the duress around you.
    Spend time with Me each day, strengthen within you.
        Come ye apart, now.


    He is so peacefully asleep
    Astern, inside the boat.
    But stormy winds threaten to sweep
    Away His friends, who strive to keep
    Their sinking craft afloat.

    He wakes, and with serene control
    He calms the boisterous main.
    The angry waves now cease to roll.
    His wakeful presence calms each soul;
    All is at peace again.

    How oft, mid scenes of quietness,
    Fierce storms abruptly rise
    To threaten all our dreams, and press
    Upon our lives extreme distress,
    Demanding actions wise.

    When thus oppressed, we trust that One—
    Our tempest-calming Friend.
    Whether we've lost a dear someone,
    Or cruel circumstance hits home,
    We trust right to the end.

    If even the wind and waves obey
    God's voice, why should we fear
    What life will throw at us each day?
    Why hesitate our vows to pay?
    We're in God's constant care.


    Our plans and goals, even though well managed,
    Don't always work out as they should.
    Disruptive forces leave them damaged
    Depleting what was meant for good.

    We toil preparing for the future
    With goals well crafted and devised;
    We plan ahead; high hopes we nurture,
    Yet oft our plans go unrealized.

    The flow of life, so unprotected,
    Silent as light, dogged as time,
    Slides circumstances unexpected
    Upsetting plans, even dreams sublime.

    A great career replete with promise
    Is wrecked due to one careless deed.
    A happy home with wholesome practice
    Is marred by one infectious seed.

    A friend, a spouse, a son or daughter
    Is taken home beyond the sky.
    An empty space begging their laughter,
    Is left behind in hearts that cry.

    When times like these are filled with sadness,
    What can we do? Where do we turn
    In our attempt to regain gladness?
    Is there a lesson we can learn?

    We can do what our sane thoughts tell us,
    Attempt the best that we can try.
    But lingering hopes in steady chorus
    Still each day drain our spirits dry.

    We can, not seeking explanations,
    Turn to the ONE who holds the key
    To life's mysterious, puzzling questions,
    The One who said: "Come Unto Me."

    We pray that God will give direction,
    Supply the needs, open the door
    That shows the path to full correction,
    And give us wisdom to endure.


    Two blind men by the wayside
    Sat waiting hopelessly,
    Bombarded by the noises
    Of all that passed them by.
    Ignored and disregarded,
    Day after day they sat
    In fruitless boredom, waiting
    To gain, they knew not what.

    'Tis easy to sit waiting;
    'Tis easy to postpone
    Taking that needed action
    That gets the sought goal won.
    'Tis easy to be blinded,
    Though eyes are open wide,
    By attitudes and habits
    That leave deep wounds inside.

    Are you among those waiting
    Along life's wayside drear,
    Oblivious to the chances
    Available each year?
    If only you'll gain freedom
    From crippling sloth's control,
    You'll find new strength and purpose,
    New compass for your soul.

    Why waste a life of promise?
    You've many a river to cross.
    High mountains wait your climbing;
    Don't let all chance be lost.
    You've races begging contest;
    You've battles to be fought.
    Bestir yourself! Take action!
    Don't spend your life for naught.

    Great gifts to you were given
    At birth. Don't let them lie
    Like weak unwatered seedlings
    That wither, shrink and die.
    Begin to live with purpose;
    Waste not another day.
    Set goals; plan their fulfillment,
    And on this new path stay.

    Don't rue your life's inaction.
    Move boldly towards your goal.
    Be honest, just and kindly.
    Seek nurture for your soul.
    Trust your Divine Creator;
    In His great love abide.
    Leave your soft-cushioned station
    Down by the old wayside.


Excerpted from MORE THAN THESE by DESMOND E. R. OTTLEY Copyright © 2011 by Desmond E. R. Ottley. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents


The Source....................v
Section 1—Lessons From Nature....................1
Section 2—Lessons From The Strangest Birth....................11
Section 3—Lessons From The Greatest Life....................21
Section 4—Lessons From The Costliest Passion....................41
Section 5—Lessons From The Miraculous Rising....................51
Section 6—Lessons For Daily Living....................63
Index Of Meters, Titles And Scriptural References....................116

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