“My Full Reward” by Taz Turner

How foolish am I? I can’t count the ways. 

I’m hypocrisy’s slave who in solitude prays  

For humility, yet, when found in a crowd 

Seeks attention with zeal befitting a proud, 

Narcissistically inclined offspring of the earth. 

My heart becomes bitter, faced with the dearth 

Of high praise, which my mind somehow thinks is its due, 

Though the lightest inspection reveals it’s not true  

That I’m anything special, or even that I 

Can lay claim to my virtues (hard as I try). 

The sound of my name makes my eyes come alight,  

To the point where I breathe it aloud in the night. 

With shame I admit that behind all my acts, 

This malevolent force disrupts and distracts 

My intentions from those that are good and still pure, 

Towards glittering pride’s gilded allure. 

Alas, how reflection cuts me to my core, 

Reprimanding my failure in barring the door 

Against evil that I have instead welcomed in 

And cared for myself as a shameful pet sin. 

Sometimes I wonder, was I worth it to save,  

If I still act the part, though no longer a slave. 

Yet, my doubts aren’t enough to drive out the joy 

That was put there by Jesus and can’t be destroyed 

By the heights of the mountains or depths of the sea. 

For no distance can divide my savior from me. 

But the goal of my foe is to bind me in chains, 

And convince me that God will ignore all my pains, 

When truly the Lord grants me tools to take hold 

Of my-self in a way that is radical, bold. 

And though I will fail him and fail him again, 

There’s as much mercy now as there’s ever been. 

So the next time my enemy tells me I’ve lost, 

I’ll refer him to Jesus who paid my full cost.