Saturday, December 31, 2016

18)JL Jacobs: "On Chimes" and "Bloch Prayer Response"

On Chimes

Leaves scuttle,
drift here.
tinny whine.

If there are ghosts
caught midplane,
collect bits of us.

Webs & hair.
Installation pieces.

come haunt
seasons, leaves,
& my dog-eared


Bloch Prayer Response
blue / moon time
thunder rumbles distantly
the tides call
to their knees

all might
all weapons
all feeble
and tremble

your call
your attentive
make all seem
a bedrock

I answered
with quartz
and more bedded rock--
Apache tears
& crazy lace
and prayed
that the seeming/seaming
might "be".

JL Jacobs is an Oklahoma poet, the author of a handful of books including The Leaves in Her Shoes
and Streets as Elsewhere

Friday, December 30, 2016

17)Olya Varkentin "Moscow's Holiday Window Displays"

Olya is a teacher, photographer, and graphic designer living in Moscow. She also enjoys travelling and drawing. You can see her art at instagram (@varkentin) or vkontakte (

Thursday, December 29, 2016

16)Dulce Paola Vargas "Navidad"

Click on the subtitles for English Translation.

Dulce es una sierva que vive en Ixtapaluca, Edo. De Méx. y está estudiando para Técnico Prótesis Dentales. Le gusta escribir poesía y sierve como líder de jóvenes en su Iglesia y en la Farmacia, en los viajes misioneros. 

Dulce is a servant living in Ixtapaluca, México State who's studying dental prostheses. She likes to write poetry and when she's not serving as a youth leader in her church, leads worship or works in the pharmacy on Medical Missions Trips.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

15)Kyleigh Dunn "Homeless at Christmas"

This year
We signed our gifts
“from the homeless Dunns”
But really
That’s not accurate
When I think of

Mary giving birth
In a stable
                - I had a hospital

Or the Magi
Following the star
                - our wandering is only a month

And refugees
Fleeing ISIS
                - we have more than we can carry,
                And more over the ocean.

And civilians
Escaping Mosul
                - we’ve always had a roof.

And in Aleppo there are
Broken bodies
Under broken roofs.
Then woe is me, poor child, for thee.

And my infant
Not sleeping from jet lag
Theirs will sleep
By by lully, lullay

My darkness
Of raging hormones
Nothing like theirs
Or the mothers of Bethlehem.
Why is there so much darkness
At the start of new life?
And ever mourn and say

But the Light shines
in the darkness
And the darkness
Does not overcome Him.
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night

the Healer does not crush
the bruised reed
But binds up
the broken.
And death’s dark shadows put to flight

The Herods in our day
and His
May batter their people
But He
is good -
is God -
With Us.

Passionate about music, the love of Christ, new cuisines, and exploring the great outdoors, Kyleigh strives to share her experiences, putting her thoughts, dreams, and imaginings onto paper as she has lived abroad and traveled the world.  

Check her Blog: 
Or check out her book The Christian Musician on Amazon.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

14)Воробьёвы "Тёмной Ночью"

О нас: В нашей семье 18 детей! Все, кроме самых маленьких играют на музыкальных инструментах. Мы пишем и поем песни прославляющие Иисуса Христа, Который творит чудеса в нашей жизни! 

 About the Borobyev Family: In our family there are 18 kids, and everyone except the littlest play different musical instruments. We write and sing songs praising Jesus Christ, who moves in our lives in miraculous ways!

English Translation of the lyrics:

One dark night in Bethlehem
The savior was born
The gift of heaven sent for us

The way to the baby was lit
By a shining star
That each here on this planet
Would know their messiah had come

Christ is born, Christ is born
Celebration, heaven-sent
God spilt his holy blood
So that with Him we could live

That we could live in Him
Victorious every day
The battle is the Lord's
wait, believe

Wait and see

Monday, December 26, 2016

13)Аида Азизова "Звезда"

Aida Azizova is a Kyrgyz Singer-Songwriter.   Listen to more of her music on youtube.

Аида Азизова Кыргыз певец и поэт.   Слышьте её музыку на ютубе.

Translation of the Lyrics:
The stars above are silent
Or maybe shouting
I don’t hear them
What does the silence speak of?
When I finally
Turn my ear
Wind brings me news
There is in this world
One who loves
White snowflakes on my face
Kiss me in His name

Tell me rain,
Can you embrace the
Whole world with
Your love?
Tell me sun,
Can you light up
The darkness in
Each lonely heart?

I see the light of the brightest star
He whispers with his shining
That there in this world
One who gave His life
Because of His love
For me

And the wind, the bright stars
And the white snow, and abundant rain…
On my cheeks fall tears of thankfulness
I see his love all around
I hear what the silence has been shouting
I see the dancing snowflakes
I know the One who loves me
And I respond
I love you too

I know of One who loves you

Will you tell him, “I love you too,”? 

Sunday, December 25, 2016

12)Greta Cydzikaitė "Christmas Cookies."

Greta Cydzikaitė is a violinist, artist, and sometimes poet.  She loves God and jumping around mountains when she's not working with Glasgow's youth.  

Saturday, December 24, 2016

11)Joanna Marshall "Indiana Snows"

Christmas time
A season of advent
Frozen and dead
Bitter cold and frigid winds
Icy flakes and pale skies
Standing in the middle of the white
Deep green and dark shadows
Contrasting against the bright white
Evergreen trees
Laden with snow
A reminder of hope and new life
Through the bitter cold
Hope of a Savior
Bringing new life
Hope of everlasting joy

And eternal peace

Joanna Marshall studies math education at Purdue; she enjoys snapping photographs, chatting in Spanish, and poeting in her spare time.  Check out more or her work at her, or follow her on Instagram.

Friday, December 23, 2016

10)Carolina Jimenez "Dulzura Divina"

En la copa de un sueño
donde el arrullo de la paz
meció a la luz
y la traviesa estrella
dejó el largo de su brillo
en el pesebre de la noche
nació la vida tierna
de un salvador.

Los cielos abrieron sus parpados
y su noble mirada
encendió la luminante
alegría de la luna
pastoreaba el alma de unos sabios
que hallaron la salvación
acostada en Dios
una mano descansando
sobre otra mano.

María con su callado en los ojos
José con la boca
llena de noche buenas.

Alabado sea el silencio
que bendice a lo pequeño
el eterno abrazo
que entrega a su hijo
en los brazos de la tierra.

Quien se maravilla
de lo sencillo
de lo humilde
halla un tesoro
quien glorifica
la dulzura divina

del nacimiento de un niño. 

English Translation (James Metelak)

Divine Sweetness
In the cupboard of a dream
where the lullaby of peace
rocked back and forth to the light
the mischievious star
left the length of its brightness
in a nighttime manger 
there was born the tender life
of a savior

The heavens opened eyelids
and the noble glance
lit up the luminous
joy of the moon
shephering the soul of some wise men
who found salvation
tucked in God
a hand resting 
on another hand

María with quiet in her eyes
Joseph with his mouth
filled with pointsettias

Praise be to the silence
that blesses the little one
the eternal embrace
that carries the child
into the arms of the earth

He who wonders
at the simple
at the humble
finds a treasure
who glorifies
the divine sweetness
of the baby's birth

Carolina Jimenez tenía 13 años cuando se intereso en escribir lo que veía. A los 16 años conoció en un parque a una poetiza, quien le dijo que podía escribir poesía. Nació en México y estudia en Guatemala, ahora es poeta publicada y le gusta ayudar a otros que están en necesidad.

Carolina Jimenez was 13 when she became interested in writing about the things around her she saw.  At 16, she met a poet in the park who told her that she could write poetry.  Born in Mexico, studying in Guatemala, she's been published and has performed at various events.  In her spare time, she enjoys serving her adopted city and reading.  

Thursday, December 22, 2016

9)Jamie Krycho "Man of Sorrows"

Jaimie Krycho is a writer with a passion for the sublime. She regularly dabbles in sci-fi and fantasy when she's not busy mothering her two mini-mes. Follow her once and future writing endeavors at, and her forays into poetry, practical theology, and streams-of-consciousness at

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

8)Evgeniy Predibaylo "Kyrgyz Mountainscapes"

Evgenii Predibaylo bought his first professional camera in 2014 after working as a tour guide for some years in Kyrygzstan. He enjoys nature, his family, and volunteering with Lighthouse Kyrgyzstan's mentoring program. Subscribe and check out more of his photography on Instagram  @Evgeniy_Photographer!

Евгений Придыбайло:  Родился 1984 года, фотография нравилась с детства. Работая гидом по Кыргызстану делал много хороших снимков но на дешевые фотоаппараты. В 2014 году купил первую зеркальную камеру, с тех пор стараюсь развиваться в фотографии. Смотрите и подпишите на Instagram:

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

7)Mike Walker "An Un-silent Night"

This is not a silent night.

Shells fall in Aleppo, presidents and politicians raise their clamorous voices, and corporations preach from every altar where sacrifices are made to the idol of consumerism. Crowds of self-absorbed Christmas shoppers are out in force on the high streets, their noisy voices a narcotic to the sobs of pain ringing out around the world this season.

In the midst of this cacophony, we strain our ears to hear the voice of God. But he cannot be heard above the clamour of war and the empty speeches of politicians and the choirs of unholy angels bringing the season’s greetings of greed.

But this is the very paradox of the Incarnation, the story of the invisible God making himself known to humankind by putting on weak human flesh. His mouthpiece among us, his son Jesus, is so unlike the great-and-mighty of this world in nature, that if we do not seek him out like the magi of old, we will miss his voice altogether. 

He was born in a festering cattle shed, in a backwater town of an insignificant region of an oppressive empire. “There was nothing in his appearance that we should be drawn to him,” said the prophets.

So it was that the world continued to swirl in the chaotic tumult of empires bent on war and the man-on-the-street continued to rush about his daily business, even as exhausted Mary laid the head of the Messiah on her lap. The revelation of God to man and the ushering-in of the Kingdom of Heaven went unnoticed, even as it continues to do so today.

But it is in the birth of this dependant little boy that the very nature of God was made known to man. His little murmurs are the whisper of the Father calling out across the cosmos to his broken world. 
But why so discrete, why so unambiguous?

It is because the power of God is not like the power of man – the abusive, oppressive, selfish power of man.

The helpless cry of this new-born child silences the dictator’s militaristic waffling and the king’s commanding shout. No politician or governor or commander can give an answer to his whimper. This is the very voice of God in the whisper of a baby. Not in the wind or the earthquake or the fire, nor in the voice of the megalomaniac administrator or the pompous statesman, but in the humble cry of a powerless infant.

His cry of surrender from a wooden trough is echoed in his cry of dereliction on a wooden cross, the very power of God made known in the weakness of a dying man.

This Christmas, you will not hear his voice in kings’ courts or amidst ranks of politicians. Rather, his whisper will be heard, discretely, gently, amidst the falling shells and rubble of Syria and Iraq, amongst the families of the poor and disenfranchised, calling out amongst the weak and powerless and oppressed. He will be heard gently wooing the broken-hearted to himself. His power is not the power of Putin or Trump or Assad, abusive, selfish, and turned against the powerless. His power is always for his people - loving, healing, selflessly giving.

Amongst those whose voices will not be heard amongst the clamour of the powerful of this world on this un-silent night, I hear the soft voice of God, wooing and restoring men and women to himself. And if you strain your ear, you too can hear his tender whisper on this darkest of nights, among the hurting and broken. For it is among them, especially them, that God is calling out to humanity, with the murmur of a helpless baby and the cry of a suffering man.

Mike Walker is an aspiring writer, student theologian, and avid coffee-drinker currently at university in Nottingham, UK. He’s passionate about serving the church, and enjoys creating graphics and art when he’s got some down-time. 

Monday, December 19, 2016

6)Jamie Musselman "The Lamb's Choice"

"I wanted to show the sacrifice it took to become human." 

Jamie Musselman is a visual artist and painter from Indiana.  Check out more of her work at RedBubble or watch her draw on youtube.  

Sunday, December 18, 2016

5)Kel Fowler "niveous haze"

                                                                        niveous haze

niveous mist wisps and winds through steeples tall, along
cobbles flat and up your trouser leg. women cower on buses

gloves and bags. Michelin kids slip and slide
wide-eyed tasting skies of their failing flaying youth

the haves shop until they drop and have-nots drop at the shop
collecting alms doing no harm, but spoiling foiling illusions of
'good tidings for you and your kin'

street windows, flat screens, screaming wars, on the hour every
hour, Aleppo letting go

downloaded and freeloaded an aroma kicks the coma. Coffee to
see, to set free, my tunes, iTunes, oh it's such A Beautiful Life.

a cross on a spire, a flurry, a story, an electric fire. Santa calls,
snow falls, the barista waits, Jesus weeps

daylight sleeps, darkness creeps, chills spill, dammit this planet
stops a spinning, no one's winning, no one notices

Christmas          effortless meaningless, unless of course your horse,
your saviour entered this tragically, magically juxtaposed hard-
nosed space & place

to rescue men [and possibly women too] from their sorrowful
pitiful sinful ways

this Yuletide faze, this yearly craze,
it's rather a random kingdom
niveous haze

Kelvin Fowler is a Kiwi pastor, poet, writer, and artist. His exploits include numerous publications, poetry tours of the UK and Germany, and various adventures like those in his book Clueless in America. Check out more of Kelvin's work at, including his latest book, Verses for the King.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

4)Stephen Carradini "The First Person to See God in the Flesh"

cuts the cord with a small knife
and wipes the blood off the eyelids of

God blinks.

Joseph blinks too, caught up in awe 
at his firstborn son
who is also the son of God.

Thoughts rush through his head, like
"I hope Mary knows how to make a sling
because I don't" and
"I wonder if the neighbors need a new table,
because I'm gonna need some more work" and
"So you're the Messiah, huh?" 
shortly thereafter followed by a shocking
"How do I raise the Messiah?" 
"Does this mean I can't screw this up
or that I could screw this up really bad?"

Jesus' eyes wander up toward Joseph's.
Jesus smiles, and Joseph thinks,
"No, the Lord will cover us."

Stephen Carradini is an Oklahoman residing in North Carolina who reports on music at Independent Clauses, records music as The Midnight Sons, and occasionally posts poems at Gospelized

Friday, December 16, 2016

3)Katie Joy Nellis "Northumbrian Lullaby"

Kathryn Nellis is a painter, writer, musician, and creative genius. She studied at Gordon College and in Orvieto, Italy, and currently works as a self-employed artist in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Listen to her music: Website: FB: Katie Joy Nellis Art

Thursday, December 15, 2016

2)Claudia Cota "Jesus es mi navidad."

Claudia Cota es licenciada en Canto de Ópera y Concierto, soprano lírico coloratura.
Ha cantado los roles principales de las óperas: Rigoletto, La Traviata de Verdi, Don Pasquiale, Elixir de Amor de Donizzetti, El Empresario de Mozart (ambas sopranos) y La Rondine de Puccini como Magda De Cirvy (estreno en México 2013).  Protagonizó los musicales El Fantasma de la Ópera en México (2000) y Argentina (2009) interpretando a Christine Daeé, Los Miserables en México (2004) y La Bella y La Bestia en México (2008).   Hay 
4 albumes de música coral en que canta en AmazonPalabras de Vida, Israel Ramírez:  Rut,  Gozo y Alegría, y El Nacimiento de Jesucristo.  Ha recibido honores en México y Argentina por su trabajo.  Vive en México, ama a Cristo, y canta con todo corazón.  

Claudia Cota is a licensed professional opera singer based in Mexico City.  She had performed leading roles in numerous operas, including Beauty and the Beast, The Phantom of the Opera, Argentina, Los Miserablés en México, La Traviata, Rigoletto and more.  She has also performed in Argentina and the United States.  She has sung on four choral albums that can be found on Amazon:  Palabras de VidaIsrael Ramírez:  Rut,  Gozo y Alegría, y El Nacimiento de Jesucristo. Her inspiring, beautiful voice is matched by an inspiring faith and a great love and loyalty to the people around her. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

1)Audrey Gragert "Madonna with Child" and "Christmas in the Tropics"

This last year, I had a thought. What if Mary had morning sickness? It had never occured to me. I had always assumed she had a comfortable, perfect pregnancy because she was doing God's will and God blesses those who obey him. It occured to me recently that Jesus was born in pain and blood and there was no reason why Mary should not have had a normal side effect of pregnancy. Perhaps she had times where she hovered uncertainly over a bucket or days where she was just too sick to do anything but lie on her bed. I hope not, but it made me think that even when we are doing what is right, we will not always be comfortable. 

"Christmas in the Tropics" 8.5"x8.5" watercolor

This is my impression of the Holidays in Guam. There are Christmas lights everywhere, but it still does not look anything like the Christmas I am used to seeing.
In the Middle Ages kings would hold an orb to represent how God had power over all the earth and I decided to use a similar form to represent something slightly different. Being in Guam, I have realized how God's family is where ever I go. It may be impossible to celebrate Christmas with my family in the United States, but I can still celebrate with my family, my church family. God's power reaches to every part of the earth and his people are all throughout the earth as well.

Audrey Gragert is a Studio Art graduate of CSU Chico (California) and one of the most joyful people I have ever met.  She is currently a homemaker stationed in Guam, expecting for the first time!  Check out her portfolio at Deviantart: 

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

25)"Snow" by Zach Winters

Paste Magazine calls Zach Winters’ songs “perfect for a hushed afternoon in the season that bears his name.” The new 15-song album, Monarch, is ruminating and warm, with strings and pianos carrying forward Winters’ unique brand of folk.
In 2015, Winters has been on tour throughout the US, musically migrating with his family and playing shows with Josh Garrels, Will Reagan, A Boy & His Kite, and Aaron Strumpel. October will see him traveling to the Southern Hemisphere to join Holly Arrowsmith for shows throughout Australia & New Zealand. He has had the honor to sing for Syrian refugees, laboring mothers, orphans in Mexico, and his friends, neighbors and family. He & his family reside on the Great Plains.  Check out his music at

Monday, January 4, 2016

24)"Take My Wretched Thinking" Kendall Faust

Name: Kendall Faust Birthplace/Current City: Pensacola, FL Prime Occupation: Videography Fun Fact: Could consume crawfish everyday.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

23)Photography by Krista Kahsen

Krista Kahsen is a young photographer, church pianist, and hometown missionary in Michigan. She is currently studying English through CollegePlus and enjoys being a camp counselor when she gets the chance. Check out her blog and like her photography page below: