Jesus, Be My Contentment

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Did you know American poet Walt Whitman revised his book Leaves of Grass as many as 12 times? “He added new poems, named or renamed old ones, and, until 1881, repeatedly regrouped them. He developed the typography, appended annexes, reworded lines, and changed punctuation, making each edition unique.” (Source: Library of Congress) This is such a great comfort to me! I remember learning this years ago and being both encouraged and liberated by it. If a revered poet such as Whitman would feel the need to revise, re-edit even the smallest details of one of the most respected published poetry collections, how much more, this accidental, UNemerged still-learning, poet from Rhode Island? I still find oversights, grammatical errors, and or subtle shifts needed in phrases to clearly communicate the intended thought in much of my writing, often after I’ve shared or published publicly.

However, as much as I take great comfort in continuing to revise many of my works of words, I take greater comfort, often, in the words themselves. This one piece, I am sharing today, I have revised once again. I love the fact that I have learned so much over these years of writing. It pains me to recognize how little I actually know or understand about many things, poetry being one of them. I confess poetry comes to me, and I receive it. I can’t really force it out. Sometimes it just comes. Sometimes I have to capture it. Often I miss it as it drifts away, when I can’t or don’t make my way to pen and paper, or keyboard. But some of my words come as prayers straight from the heart, guided by Christ in me, the One who is Himself, The Word. This is my joy! So as I laid in bed last night once more I was reminded of these words, and heart longing from within. As we approach the season when every ungodly distraction will set itself up against the pure, precious, simple truth and complex beauty: Christ, the savior, born of a virgin, in Bethlehem, born to live a sinless life, to die on the cross, crucified to save the world…you, me, and everyone who receives Him. He is the One True Living God, Eternal. There is no other.

I offer this heart prayer, poem to you, fellow traveler and pray it blesses you. My prayer is that Jesus, would satisfy- for I know He does, but in my humanity, so often, I fail to live out this satisfaction completely. Lord, help me to express in my life what I know and believe in my heart!

I have shared this poem, under different titles (now newly revised again), but the first thing that comes to my lips when I am battling darkness or darkness disguised as light, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and all the Merry mustered by advertisers, corporate, retail and social media, is this: Jesus, be my contentment. May He be yours this holiday season.

Jesus, Be My Contentment

Jesus, be my contentment,
in you I am complete.
Be my portion, come sanctify
where hope and my longing meet.

Your light is a guide for me, my gaze
turns wholly towards you-
only you can satisfy
with all that’s holy and true.

Remind me in the darkness
that I am embraced by your light,
a lamb on your chest, securely held-
carried through impending night.

I look to you, but still fear-desires will overtake me.
Jesus, be my contentment-in your light and life, I am free.
Keep me content in you- glorified,
by your blood and faithful decree.

To God be the glory, forever. Amen.

Published by enthusiasticallydawn

Dawn Paoletta is the author of Journaling for Discovery and Delight. Her writing is included in several anthologies and her poems have been included in the Wickford Poetry and Art Exhibit and Books. Dawn is currently working on her next book. Inquiries at

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