I Need a Breakthrough

I need a breakthrough,
A radical departure
From my current plateau,
To an area where endorphins flow,
In proportion to the challenges
I encounter.

I need a breakthrough,
Not incremental steps
To emancipation of thought;
But a bold new mindset to evoke
True innovation.

I need a breakthrough,
Ascending spiral staircases
To adventure;
To a domain where the air
Is different;
An elevation where
I must train vigorously
To sustain excellence
Of another kind.

I need to breakthrough
The stifling strait jacket
Of my staid routine;
To acquiesce to the audacity
To explore and find
The alternative sides
Of my capacity.

I need a breakthrough
To penetrate the glass ceilings,
To disintegrate the feelings
That the past and present
Are the best I can do.

I need a breakthrough
To build the images my mind
Has shared with me,
So that I can do
What is required to be
The type of person
I have been privileged to see.

Copyright © 2002 Orlando Ceaser
Reprinted from Leadership Above the Rim

What Will You Be Known For?

What will be your monument,
That you were discontent,
And mired in constant acts
Of complaining?
That you started projects
But had problems sustaining
The momentum to their completion?
Will they give points or credit
For additions of faith and subtract
For your numerous deletions
Of attendance when your
Presence was required,
And you needed to act?

What will you be known for?
Achieving the pinnacle
Of your profession?
For the periodic lapses
Of courage, concessions
Made because you were afraid to offend;
The wasted chances to recommend
An alternate viewpoint;
When you lost your soul
And squandered the chance
To model the more appropriate role?

What will they say
Was your slant on things?
How often did you say
Can’t on things?
Was the glass
Half empty or half full?
Did you push the envelope
When you needed to pull?

What will be
Your impact on things?
Will you be known
To support or able to bring
Closure to negative forces at large;
That you rode the flow or took charge?

How will they describe you
When you experienced a fall?
Were you gracious
Or not at all?
Did you take responsibility
Or defer the blame?
Or use the challenge
To strengthen your name?
Did you go with precedents
Or question all the evidence?

Where did you stand?
Where was your heart?
Was love sweetness
Or was it tart?
Were you as a lover open wide
Or cautious as mating porcupines;
Was there something to hide?

What will you be known for?
For life you know, is keeping score?
Are you making a difference at all?
Will they read your writing on the wall
Of life and ascertain
That your presence eased suffering;
That pain was lessened
By your moments here;
And life was better
And maybe one less tear
Took a journey down a cheek,
Because you listened
And was not afraid to speak?

Copyright © 2001 Orlando Ceaser
Reprinted from Teach the Children to Dance by Orlando Ceaser

Words on a Rampage

Words on a Rampage

They are consuming everyone;
Demanding the use of common sense;
Syllables rampant and on the run
Excavating motive and establishing precedence.
Their messages to readers and hearers
Is communication must be clearer.

Words on a rampage,
Mobilizing the elements,
Sometimes with benevolence,
Sometimes with malevolence;
Sometimes with elegance
And eloquence
That stimulate intelligence.
They challenge us to read and speak
Through their prevalence
We seek uniqueness and relevance.

Words on a rampage,
Harness them and you’ll succeed;
Ride the energy of the stampede.
They will add to your vocabulary;
A potent verbal inventory;
Scale borders, boundaries
And jurisdictions;
Speaking to power,
To shower with conviction.

Words are on a rampage,
Therefore, read more,
So we can lead more,
So we will need more;
Inspect them;
Collect them;
Learn them;
Discern them;
Connect and respect them;
Communicate;
Ruminate, illuminate,
To address yourself
And express yourself,
The rich ensuing conversations
May lead to standing and written ovations.

Words on a rampage,
Written and spoken;
Building bridges where connections
Are broken;
Enabling us to express grief
Adequately stating our beliefs,
To pacify and comfort those
Who need condolence,
To accompany and compose
Those who suffer,
And generate ideas to buffer
Against ignorance and stagnation,
To catalyze a new generation.

Words on a rampage,
Kicking and screaming;
Adding stamina, so that dreaming
Is driven by a desire
To be inspired and forgiven.

Words on a rampage,
Through social media, Wikipedia
The images are viral,
The words help spiral the content
To the other realm,
Where the messages can
Under or overwhelm.

Words on a rampage,
To excavate the hidden;
To those mentally bedridden,
Free yourselves from the forbidden
And restricted.
Be mysterious,
Not easily predicted
And recognize the need to release
The potency of potential,
The power of peace.

Copyright © 2017 Orlando Ceaser

Alone with My Thoughts

When I am alone with thoughts,
I am not lonely.
I do not feel abandoned;
I am not bored,
For God is my companion,
And in the company
Of infinite memories,
My Lord comforts me.

When I am alone with my thoughts,
I do not feel ignored,
For solitude refreshes
And satiates my spirit.
The still small voice is audible
And I hear it speaking softly.
As I climb down from lofty
Expectations, I know
That in God’s eyes,
I don’t need a disguise
To be accepted.

When I am alone with my thoughts,
I delve beneath the dermis of the stream.
I descend beyond shallow excursions
And risk the unthinkable and stretch my dream
To adventures and exotic diversions
That require me to bend my mind,
To think hard and transcend my mind;
To seek, to contemplate, to find
My way to inner peace.

When I am alone with my thoughts,
God is there with me,
And if I sought His counsel,
I would be taught marvelous things.

Copyright © 2002 Orlando Ceaser
Reprinted from Look for the Blessing

OrlandoCeaser.com

“Take Me to Your Leader” – Who Is Your Leader?

A common refrain from extra-terrestrial beings in science fiction movies was “Take me to your leader.” The visitors from another planet would land on planet Earth and their first comments, through translator software, was “Take me to your leader.” There was an assumption that we were governed by, ruled by or were followers of a single individual. The visitors had important information to present to this one sovereign person. They did not want to go through individuals in the middle or on the lower rungs of the hierarchy. They wanted Number one, the Boss, the person in charge.

“Take me to your leader” was an important question. The question I have for us today is who is your leader or to be more precise, who are the leaders in your life? In my poetic interpretation of the 23rd Psalm, I answer the question by saying the Lord is my Leader.

Please read the Lord is my Leader and answer the discussion or reflection questions to stimulate additional thought and conversation. They may be used individually or as part of a group discussion.

The Lord is My Leader

The Lord is my Leader I shall not lack
Direction for He is standing at my back;
While in front of me He makes decisions
To meet my needs with ample provisions.

I shall not want for his abundance fills
My cup with affluence and as it spills,
As water flowing from a mountain top,
His goodness and mercy will never stop.

He mends my brokenness
And I find rest,
As He restores my soul,
He refreshes my spirit,
Changes my countenance
And makes me whole.

He leads me where the waters are still;
He tutors me as I study His will;
He comforts me in righteousness;
Though I walk through the valley
Of difficult times;
Disease, disasters and immoral crimes
I fear no evil for He
Protects me from my enemies
And loves me though there is sin in me,
And promises me an eternity
Of matchless splendor and serenity.

(Adapted from Psalms 23)

Copyright © 2013 Orlando Ceaser

Discussion Questions

1. Have someone read the poem allow or each person should silently read to themselves.
2. What role does God play in your decision-making process?
3. Do you believe in the second stanza to be true? How powerful is your faith?
4. God is making you whole as you read this. Discuss the importance of these words. The Lord is your leader. How are you following?
5. How are you resting on his promises and finding comfort in His words?
6. God as a leader has a vision for your life. Discuss your thoughts about his vision for you.
7. Ask for final comments from the members of the group.
8. Pray and conclude the session

The Lord is My Leader is reprinted from my book Daily Resurrections, published by Watchwell Communications, Inc. The questions are added separately to stimulate conversation.

A Greater Story to Tell

Challenges are part of our development and survival curriculum. With a change in perspective we can see them as exercises making us stronger and providing opportunities and data that will be useful to us and those we influence. These challenges, struggles and tribulations can also make us more interesting and therefore, give us a greater story to tell. I have used the poem and process in a workshop with cancer survivors and their care givers as they shared their cancer journey and other challenges faced in their lives.

A Greater Story to Tell

When you reflect on hurdles in the race;
The many times you stood after you fell.
When you think of dreams you’ve chased
And replaced;
They give you a greater story to tell.

With struggles intense and continuous
Life buckled your knees, but your back was straight.
The footing was unsure and strenuous,
But you managed through faith to challenge fate.

You wonder why circumstances are hard,
But remember the woman at the well;
His living water made her disregard
Her plight with a greater story to tell.

The magnitude of His majesty smiles
On those who ask for wisdom in the storm.
To pray for optimism in your trials
For mercy, grace and the strength to perform.

If you will seek you first the kingdom of God
Within you the Holy Spirit will dwell.
His joy will guide your footsteps as you trod
Through life with a greater story to tell.

As subjects of the omnipotent King
With blessings unmatched without parallel;
Amazed we find, in our suffering,
There’s often a greater story to tell.

Copyright © 2013 Orlando Ceaser

Discussion Questions

1. Please discuss hurdles you are facing that are challenging you and
keeping you up at nights.
2. Discuss how you have shown strength in your current circumstances.
3. What are your practices, routines, disciplines to stay connected with
God?
4. How has your story become greater?
5. How are you using it to influence, role model and help others?

OrlandoCeaser.com

One More Day

Each day we are reminded of the terminal nature of life, its beauty brevity, the challenges and charity, the time we can recall, but not recapture. It is during these times we wish that we can have one more day with a loved one, a dearly departed friend or relative. Therefore, we should embrace the moments and be thankful for what is currently one more day, one day at a time. 

One More Day

They see their health is failing;
And laboring as they breathe;
Powerless and frightened,
Need to be enlightened,
Their struggling to believe.

Their whole world is condensing,
And silently as they pray.
Sad thoughts enter their heads,
They fear what lies ahead.
They want at least one more day.

One more day to stop sailing
Quickly through life to explore
The joys and devotion
Of fun-filled emotions
And strive to love others more.

To confront each circumstance,
To cherish time and to dance,
To laugh more and to care,
To live and be aware,
And relish a second chance.

While sick, lying in their bed
There’s so much, they want to say;
They want to open eyes,
Surprise the next sunrise;
And grateful for one more day.

At least one more day for peace
To build their relationships;
And options to repair
The damage that is there
From words, spoken from their lips.

At least a day to address
Shortcomings and some regrets
And build up convictions,
Work on their addictions;
And help some, they have not met.

Someone is at a bedside.
Someone is drifting away.
Man’s born, a brief sojourn;
The people are forlorn
Knowing they will mourn someday.

One more day for more healing;
Postpone fate as they delay
The inevitable,
Is unforgettable,
They need at least one more day.

Copyright © 2018 Orlando Ceaser