poems, odes, songs, books, merch and scripts
Words make me happy. Not only do I love and feel called to write Bible basics books -- I like to write and play with words, rhymes and alliterations ... sometimes it's a riddle, an ode, a poem, a song or an entire script. At other times, the Lord lets me create tshirts, hats and other fun "merch" to share His message of love, hope and joy.
As I go through my archives, on this page, I will post various creative writings/projects from over the years.
songs: two originals
I wrote the lyrics to these two songs many years ago, but the Valley Worship team and my son-in-law Zack Spangler brought them to life when they sang and recorded them. I pray your faith is strengthened as you listen!
here's the story behind these songs
I wrote The Rosebush in 1982, during a spiritually dry spell, the year after I graduated from Boston University during a spiritually dry spell. I didn't know then, how prophetic this song would be over the next several decades. Our son-in-law Zack Spangler surprised us one Sunday by creating a melody and singing it to us -- needless to say, we didn't have any dry eyes!
I wrote Surrounded one late night in 2017 while in Berlin, Germany (watch video for the story) and later in 2018, collaborated with our worship team to get it finalized. This song is based upon a prayer we prayed and spoke over our kids as they were growing up. As a church, we sang this song during the Covid era and we continue to sing and believe it. I trust you will be encouraged by both songs.
2009: "the retro christmas musical"
What would the Christmas story look and sound like if Jesus had been born in the 1960's or 70's?
In the early 2000's, after seeing an off-broadway musical production, I felt inspired to write a musical comedy of our own to tell the Christmas story using "oldies" and the gospel of Luke. By writing parody lyrics for 16 classic oldie songs from the 60's an 70's and incorporating the actual Christmas story from Luke 2, we came up with our first version of the Retro Christmas Musical and it was a hit!
For nearly 10 years, our church produced and performed Retro for thousands of people during the Christmas season. All of this was done with loads of volunteer singers, actors, band members, media tech, set and lighting experts and we saw hundreds of people come to Christ each year!
Through the years, along with the help of creative collaborators, we updated the script from time-to-time to include "favorite sing-along oldies" and a few songs from the 80's and 90's, too!
Enjoy this 2009 version of the complete Retro production as performed at Valley Family Church. After watching the first 5 minutes, you'll be hooked and you'll find yourself singing along! It's a throwback, but a fun one with the gospel Christmas message front and center. Click video below.
an ode to marriage
Marriage is honorable and indeed it has been said,
There’s nothing better for a couple than to wed.
Commitment is the first step and once you say “I do”,
You’ll get thousands of opportunities to forget about “you.”
If she’s your best friend and he’s the salt-of-the-earth,
Your marriage has started with a nice birth.
Water and nurture your vows like a flower,
Put the Lord at your center if you want His power.
He’s a little boy in a big man’s body,
He wants your admiration even when he’s naughty.
She’s a princess in her own flick,
She wants your “ooh’s and aah’s”; after all she’s a chick.
Laughter is a must and you should get a lot,
To be sad or boring – you better not!
Smile when he’s a dork and laugh at her jokes,
Then you’ll grow into happy old folks.
Tell him he’s big, strong and oh…so smart,
These words go a long way, so start!
Tell her she’s pretty, funny and oh…so fab,
Don’t ever mention her hips or flab.
Sex is great and in marriage there is trust,
Both parties having pleasure is an absolute must.
Enjoy making love, that is what it’s named,
The plan from the beginning was naked and unashamed.
Pray for your spouse and serve them with gladness,
It will take extra grace, when there has been madness.
Talk and share and talk some more,
Conversation is the key that will open most doors.
Don’t live in anger, bitterness or strife,
It’s a terrible way to waste your life.
Forgiveness is the key and you better be snappy,
If you want a marriage that is full and happy.
Having children is one of life’s joys,
Doesn’t matter whether you have girls or boys.
They’ll steal your heart and improve your prayer life,
Then one day, they’ll too find a husband or wife.
They’ll probably find a mate like you,
So, no pressure, but they’ll watch everything you do.
Once again, the cycle will begin,
Love and marriage and lots of grins.
Love’s not a feeling or a Wedding Day goose-bump,
It’s a life-long vow, once you take the jump.
Marriage is a mystery and we know for sure,
It takes dedicated commitment to build a lasting “his and her.”
One of God’s gifts is a marriage blessed from above,
I wish all you lovebirds a lifetime of love.
I wrote this ode during the Summer of 2008 as the summer wedding season began.