Writing to help you bump into Jesus.

Acts in a State of Being

By Casey Giffen

American poet and essayist John Haines stated, “The task of the poet is to make poetry out of what happens.” Last summer, the pastoral staff embarked on a 25 Sunday-sermons series on the Book of Acts. I imagined how creative and fulfilling it’d be illustrating what happens in the Book of Acts. Sometimes, the paradox for us Christ followers is learning to balance our doing and being. Rather than an either/or enigma, following Christ is a both/and way of life.

As December approached, I thought that 25 poems would be an encouraging reminder to pause—celebrate our beingness if you will—during the season of Advent, as opposed to the busyness of the December days of shopping, partying, and rushing during tis-the-season doings that can sneak up on us if we’re not aware. So, I title the poems Acts in a State of Being (it’s the Grammar in me that differentiates between action verbs and state of being verbs). I wanted to inspire people to slow down, ponder, be present.

Along with the imaginative sermon reflections, I posted one poem daily on social media, attempting to reach an audience who has a sense of spirituality but is reticent to entertain descriptors such as God, Jesus, or church. Some do not even consider attending church because of the negative associations. If interested, you can click my website to read the commentaries for each poem that I posted.

In 1981, Haines complained that “…contemporary poetry lacks the force and conviction of ideas…” My poetic, honest ideas of the father’s love for us, his beloved, hopefully are conveyed with conviction and force. That is how I do as I live out my vocation; moreover, I can simply be as I rely on the Holy Spirit to advance the kingdom slowly, creatively with the Trinity’s conviction and force…


Casey Giffen


Coffee Grounds

Prayer is the coffee grounds

sent stainless steeled

past the sink trap,

Living Water

rinsing, swirling

once wondering words

tasted—temporal or eternal?—

a bonded brew

seeping, filtered from

creative shrub

of Eden’s buds ’til

Abram and


seaside sands

and sandy stars

dripped diamonded drops

into the chosen urn;

down-the-drain Word

evaporates silently

to the heavens far and near

to Barista’s listening ear.

Acts 3  –  Abram traveled through the land as far as the site of the great tree of Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land.



Kindness is well-oiled wheels

rolling over uphill wills,

a compact wooden cart

overflowing ripened parts,

passion fruit that so appeals


to cobbled thoroughfares

bumping well-worn pairs;

the wheeling apparatus

upset rotten-apple-cart cares;

we patch leaking wheels’ air


until the Farmer, his eyes on you

watching from a field of golden hue

living light never darkening the day,

refills selfish thoughts spinning anew 

as kindly fruit falls where it may.

Acts 4

Invisible Love

To ebb with mundane fruits of ennui life

Falling straight below from broken branches

Grave-tending people shrink living chances

Relegating relationships to friends’ strife

Whenever boredom reigns. The sole relief

From plights, like a river built to dam

Up mankind’s illuminated belief

In invisible love, is so everyone can

Flow into a both-halve sense of being—

Cross born daily by dying with the Son—

And floating in a faith-filled innertube

Bobbing adventurously down stream

Intentional heart, mind, body as one

With just-in-time resources on the move.

Acts 19:1-22

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