spoken word

Machine + For the Broken Ones

I performed a combination of two pieces at The Worship Conference NorCal this past weekend. I was asked for the text of the piece. So if you are interested, here it is. He told me "We're very proud of the ministry we have here." "We have worked very hard to build a well-oiled machine." He went on to describe what I could only assume to be parts of his machine and turned to ask if could see myself as a part of his ministry, and I wish he hadn't asked.

You see, some people build ministry like a well-oiled machine. They put in all their time, money, and people in hopes that the machine will produce the right produce, the right person, the right number beware when your ministry becomes a well-oiled machine for machines have not hearts

And some people build ministry like a well-oiled machine that keeps breaking down. They put in all their time, money, and people and the machine will not produce. Take courage, my friends; it is still a machine and machines have not hearts

Machines have no need for miracles they only ask for miracles and then operate in ways to make miracles unnecessary Machines are built with big budgets and bigger buildings and I wish I could write these words in braille so someone could feel what I'm saying

You don't need God to build a machine

But worship is for the broken ones smart enough to know how foolish they are It is for those who have tried and found life lacking but are not content to confess that 'this' is all there is

If is for those wearied of wondering if our crying hearts might drown us but know that our tears are telescopes to heaven looking through trembling lenses for hope and deeper senses of home

It is for those who don't need church to be a menagerie of saints but an emergency room for sinners it is for those whose shadows are faint from finding too much light

Worship is for those who will step out onto nothing hoping to land on something because accepting that you are accepted is a perception of yourself not everyone can afford it is for the wobbly and weak-kneed who have let loose the luxury of denying a handout of amazing grace

It is for those who chose a path though straight and narrow is still rugged and beaten you are still on the right path

Worship is for phobic confessor who could never match the projections of the pious but know that perfection is a gangly wire no one could ever walk

It is for the child who holds that heaven is full of five year olds sparing themselves the futility of proving themselves to people who will never speak your language of half cartoon, half boo boo, half "Daddy, I love you." Three halves make one more than whole

Do not accept yourself as you should be but as you are because you will never be as you should be Quit rinsing your filthy rags in gas station bathrooms as if hand soap and make believe will make them believe you belong; but you belong. You belong to a kingdom belonging to people not trying to cleaner than they are You belong

Worship is for the sin-soaked and the broken who are loved and outspoken knowing unworthy is not the same as worthless

It is for the paupers who have made peace with their flaws It is for those who have prayed in silence but have never ceased to pray

Worship is for you do not for one second take your gift for granted make sure it is contagious because while it is yours to have it is only valuable in its giving away

be sure your every conversation leaves a sensation of love because this is where the mighty descend and the lowly rise to comprise what we all crave

Worship is standing on the lip of the Grand Canyon with a contagious tour guide tell you to "Look at THIS! Look at THAT! Look at THIS! Look at THAT!" and if the Grand Canyon is only a faint shadow of God's glory you have to wonder, "What must HE be like?"

You are not a worship singer, a backup vocalist, a drummer a guitarist, a basist, or a sound tech You are a worship leader You are a tour guide to God's glory So stand and shout for all who will listen "Look at THIS! Look at THAT! Look at THIS!"

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kEW1WRJTpM&w=560&h=315]

Pursuit in 2013

DSC_0156 In 2013, I would like to pursue more diligently what God is guiding me after as it relates to speaking, performing, and writing. You can help in that pursuit. I have listed a few ways below. Please consider how you would like to help and be involved.

You who have been faithful readers at ragamuffinpc.com are so greatly appreciated; I want you to know that. You are the ones who can help me pursue these next steps next year.

FREE OPTIONS Share Share Share - You may not have any idea how much of a great help it is when you share my posts on your facebook, twitter, blog, or other social media routes you are involved in. If you appreciate something you read, please take a moment to click and share. This helps immensely.

Tell, Tell, Tell - Please tell others about ragamuffinpc.com If you have found encouragement, humor, or anything else here, please tell others about it who might also enjoy what you have found here.

MINIMAL COST OPTION Get the EP - I have created a short spoken word poetry ep with 4 tracks. I started it out at $5, but I removed it and made it 'name your own price'. You can name your price at $0.00 if you wish and get the album for free. This helps me get my work out there. It is only a beginning. I am writing more than I have in the past. I want to move toward a full length, better produced album. Get the ep here.

BESTEST BEST OPTION (MAYBE EVEN FREE TO YOU) Hire or Recommend Me - I would like to begin speaking for groups, retreats, camps, chapels, convocations, churches, or anywhere you will have me in the next year. If you need a speaker for your event, please consider me. My honorarium is very manageable (typically $100/talk + travel, but I can chat if even that is too much). You can find more info at my speaking page.

If you know someone who has a need for a speaker or spoken word poet or emcee, please put in a good word and direct their attention to my speaking page. These are the best helps to me.


Thank you again for all of your support and continued reading. I will continue to write and produce the words God gives me here at ragamuffinpc.com

But it was on SALE!!!

Early this year I put out a spoken word poetry EP. I had been charging $4 which was $1 a track, but I think that is ridiculous. I have marked the entire album down to $1. WHAT?!?!

Yeah! $1

You can pay $1 for the entire EP, or truth be told, you can download each track by naming your own price. You can name your price at $0.00 and its all yours. I only ask that if you take it for free, you please click like or tweet it. If you're going to take it, please share it!

[bandcamp album=1107388974 bgcol=FFFFFF linkcol=4285BB size=venti]

3 Easy Steps to My Give-away!!!

A couple weeks ago, I released my 4 track spoken word EP at my bandcamp page. Even though $4 does not seem like much to pay, I would like to give away a couple free downloads of my EP. Here are the rules to be entered for a chance to win one of those downloads. 1. Go to my bandcamp page and listen to each track.  2. Write a blog post about the EP. Talk about what you like or dislike about it. Talk about your favorite track from the EP and why it is your favorite. Encourage your readers to check it out. (be sure to include a link to ragamuffinpc.bandcamp.com) 3. Tweet me, Email Me, or post to my facebook wall a link to your post.

And thats it! I will randomly choose 2 winners Thursday (3/22) and contact the winners with their free download instructions.

Won't Stop Calling My Name - EP

Yeah, enough prodding from friends has moved me to make a 4 track spoken word EP. At this point, it is only an EP, which means I am writing and working on a full length. It also means this one does not have original music for the tracks. I am working with some other musicians to create some music tracks to back each of the tracks on the full length.

For now, I would be honored if you would like to grab the EP. You can sample it below, and you can grab it at


[bandcamp album=1107388974 bgcol=FFFFFF linkcol=4285BB size=tall2]

The Possibility of Closeness [a Christmas poem]

We all have a dingy chamberdarkening the deep stone walls of our broken hearts where behind the doubt encrusted bars screams a familiar voice

it screams louder than you ignore stronger than you can avoid it is your voice it is our voice

we are all wrapped up in a prison without a lock and we scream we moan and scream again for something for more for God

we are all born broken people with specifically aching hearts needing God to come closer

we need more than myths, fables, and fairy tales forcing God into a book we need someone real we need more than philosophy some god in outer space means nothing to us so we scream come closer

so welcome you and your locked up voice come on in welcome to the possibility of closeness

we do not pursue a generic god with a generic faith we will not be 'spiritual' in a generic way the possibility of closeness is not 'whatever it means to you, it means to you'

it is going to require a bit of faith and faith is pretty simple, really it is nothing you muster up it is divine illumination an operation of God whereby we stand on tipped toes extending twitching fingers for something we could never reach and God makes it apprehendable he makes it possible

faith is learning to trust a God giving promises he intends to keep promises to hear your voice promises to make possibilities of closeness

so today cannot be filed down to farm animal figurines atop your fireplace mantle today is not the hope of shopping God closer as if closeness to God tasted like 34th street miracles and credit card debt

no, today is the celebration of an explosion so silent it wouldn't wake a sleeping baby it is the arresting eruption of the reality God became flesh so ssssssstop for a second and soak it in

God came close as the skin and bone of your own forearm. God became flesh so the Light of the World could be seen as clearly as you see me

The possibility fo closeness is here and not one of our words contain his name the message is too majestic for our methods so he said, 'call me Jesus call me Immanuel, God with us"

the possibility of closeness is nothing more than seeing Jesus and responding to what you have seen

God showed up to shepherds because he goes to those who have time to listen the possibility of closeness is only closed off from those to busy to pay attention

God came close enough to be broken to be tired, weary, and fearing failure to catch a cold and a case of hurt feeling and your locked up voice is going to keep him distantly divine

but don't you listen to that

let God be as human as he was because if you do not let him in He cannot get you out

Christianity is not an ethic it is not a morality or philosophy of life it is a love affair the thrill of falling in love and being loved by Jesus Christ born to bring us closer to God

So today is for those who need God to come closer because Christmas is the possibility of closeness

* check back tomorrow for a gift