Contemporary or Christian – A Poem from Prison

I volunteer with a Prison ministry through which I have met many fascinating and extraordinary inmates. The author of this poem and the other poems in my series entitled Poems from Prison is one of those inmates. (see below for more background information.) I pray you open your mind and heart to the messages, emotions and raw reality of her writings. 

Contemporary or Christian

Which brand of writer are you

Personally, Labels on my work

Simply will not do

We all posses free will

We’re are subject to the law

So sin is something common to man

We’re each born with the beautiful flaw

I know all about lust and desire

I’ve stolen things before

I’ve been in love with a married man

I’ve also played the whore

Why does it surprise someone

that a writer can pen both sides

It’s only due to grace abound

My salvation even rides

Everyone is so self-righteous

This I can truly say

I’ll throw in my lot with the sinners

over the righteous any day

What perfection ever needed a savior

this is something Jesus he knew

so he ate at his table with sinners

just like me and like you

©Somer Erickson

The Bible says in Luke 5:29-32:
“Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples,
“Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?”

Jesus answered them,
“It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sickI have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” *

Although I will leave you to reflect upon the poem, for those less familiar with the terms used by the author I offer these few comments.

What is sin?

Take a look in the mirror. Yes, you sin, I sin, we all sin!  

The Bible says:
“There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins.”-Ecclesiastes 7:20


“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” – Romans 3:23

According to “sin is doing what is wrong or not doing what is right according to God’s rules (1 John 3:4).”

God’s rules are known as the 10 Commandments.
(to learn more about The 10 Commandments click on the tab at the top of this page)

Simply stated, If God says “Do not lie” and you lie, then you have sinned.
If God says “Do not commit adultery” and you do, then you have sinned.

Be honest.  Do you see your sin clearly?  Perhaps you think “I’m a good person. I try to do the right thing.”
I hear people say that all the time. 

Who decides the standards for “the right thing”?
To me that is a scary notion. Only God is Holy (set apart, pure, perfect). You and I are far from pure.

We make choices everyday to live by God’s standards or by our own sense of right and wrong.

In Matthew 22:35-40,  Jesus was asked “Teacher,which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” to which Jesus replied

“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

38 This is the first and greatest commandment.

39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

If you are to love God like this, then keeping His Commandments must be a priority.

You need to recognize that sin is offensive to God who has no sin and is pure and Holy. Sin separates us from God, our Abba Father.

The Bible says:

“But your iniquities have separated
    you from your God;
your sins have hidden his face from you,

    so that he will not hear” –Isaiah 59:2

The good news is Jesus came to save us from the consequences of our sin. He wants each of us to be with Him for all eternity.

In spite of ourselves, Jesus loves us all.
He makes no distinction between different kinds of people.
There is no sinner no matter how grievous their sins, that cannot be redeemed through the precious blood of Jesus.
God loves all and wishes none to perish.

“…He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” – 2 Peter 3:9

“This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.” – 1 John 4:9


GOD is Love
How to Receive Eternal Salvation

What is the meaning of the term “self-righteous“?  Definitions include: 

having or characterized by a certainty, especially an unfounded one, that one is totally correct or morally superior. defines it as: confident of one’s own righteousness, especially when smugly moralistic and intolerant of the opinions and behavior of others.

My series “Poems from Prison” – 
Fallen Angels– A Poem from Prison

I Cried – A Poem from Prison

Background on this Series-
I volunteer in a Bible based ministry that serves female inmates in a special “bible unit” in Dawson State Jail, we call the God Pod. This series is meant in no way to condone illegal, immoral and hurtful behavior. The Bible calls for all sinners to confess their sin, seek forgiveness and make restitution** from those whom they have wronged. I desire for Christian faith based programs to gain increasing acceptance within the prison system as an effective means of transforming offenders- changing their lives, their eternal destiny and the lives of others for the better. 

These poems were written by Somer Erickson while in prison. The poems, not published in date order, were written at different times in her journey and reflect that fact. They offer a window into the world of a prisoner: the hurts, the experiences, the thoughts and the life change as God transforms her heart, mind and soul.

Somer Erickson was recently released from prison and is trying to rebuild her life.

**There are passages in the books of Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers on resitution. And in the New Testament in the story of Zaccheus, Jesus clearly values this principal. (Luke 19:1-9)

*(this same incident is recorded in Mark 2:15-17, Matthew 9:10-13)

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Julie Brice Beiersdorf

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