OF PURITANS AND LEPERS: lyrics

THE NAILS OF YOUR FIRST DEATH
I know that you often think about your past / You think of it with fear and fondness, hurt and happiness /At times you wonder ďwhat ifĒ or ďwhat might have beenĒ / But donít look back on it all with shame or resentment /Consider this, long ago when I was crucified / The nails in my hands and feet caused pain that human words canít describe /Not once do I look back on those cold and brittle dirty spikes with resentment, misery, or spite /I know that I often think about My past / The nails, they hurt, but without them I never would have died and risen /As for you, without your ďnailsĒ you never would have ďdiedĒ / And therefor never resurrected to a glorious new life Consider this, long ago, when I was crucified / The nails in my hands and feet caused pain that human words just canít describe /Not once do I look back on those cold and brittle dirty spikes with resentment, misery, or spite /So clutch those nails in your fist / And cast them all into the sea /Knowing that in your resurrection I give you victory, my child / And you have overcome them through Me /So clutch those nails in your fist / And cast them all into the sea /Knowing that in your resurrection / Brittle bones have turned to stone / The wanderer has found a home /Hollow eyes now shine with life / what once was bound is filled with might / Treasures found by the poor at heart/ All that I have is yours /For you have victory, my child / And you have overcome them through MeÖ

PORTRAIT OF A MONARCH
Iím the beggar on the sidewalk, no money in my pocket / Iím the homeless one searching for a place to lay my head /Iím the pregnant teen just kicked out of my home / Iím the beaten child who feels so alone /Iím the drug addicted fiend looking for a fix / Iím the person with AIDS / Iím the struggling alcoholic /Iím the next door neighbor being treated for cancer / I was paralyzed from the neck down and I used to be a dancer /You see Me everyday / Iím the one that you ignore / I reach out My hand and you close the door /But once, just once, look deep into My eyes / And find there starring back a weeping Jesus Christ /Iím here in ICU and wonít live through the night / I wonít go home from school for my parents always fight /I have a son MIA from the Vietnam War / I just miscarried my baby, I donít want to live anymore /Iím the handicapped people laugh at / Iíve been cheated on and raped/ Iím in prison for life and wonít see outside these gates /Iím hungry and Iím thirsty / I have a family and just got laid off / My name is Jesus Christ and Iím nailed to a cross /You see Me everyday / Iím the one that you ignore / I reach out My hand and you close the door /But once, just once, look deep into My eyes / And find there starring back a weeping Jesus Christ /Lift up the broken hearted / Give strength to the needy / For when you help one of the least of these, You do it unto MeÖ

SELF FULLFAILING MIRACLES
I spit in the dirt and rub the mud in my eyes / Trying for sight / Seeking a miracle of my own might / Vain plight /Another one of my empty attempts at a righteous life / Is it Christ? Or is it I? The latter must dieÖ

MEDITATION FOUR EIGHTY
I shall now close my eyes, I shall now stop my ears, I shall call away all of my sensesÖponder thisÖI am a thing that thinks, that is to say Ė that doubts, that doubts, that affirms, that denies, that loves, that hates, that imagines, that perceives, that knows a few things and is ignorant in many. Hence, beyond the corporeal and the imperfections that bind me is God. By the name God, I mean a Being that is infinite, eternal, immutable, independent, sovereign, all-knowing, all-powerful, and by which I myself and everything else have been created. Possibly, I am something more than I suppose myself to be, and perhaps all those perfections which I attribute to God are in some way potentially in me, although they do not disclose themselves, or issue in action, and truthfully will not be revealed so long as my body inhabits this world. And so I ask, from Whom do I derive my existence? From myself, or from my parents, or from some other source less perfect than God? This cannot be, for it is perfectly evident that there much be at least as much reality in the cause as in the effectÖ It remains to me to examine into the manner in which I have acquired this idea of God. For I have nor received it through the senses, and is never presented to me unexpectedly as is usual with the ideas of ďsensibleĒ things when these things present themselves, or seem to present themselves to the external organs of my senses. Nor is it likewise a fiction of my mind, for it is not in my power to take from or add anything to it. And consequently, the only alternative is that it is innate in me, just as the idea of myself is innate in me. And one certainly ought not to find it strange that God, in creating me, placed this idea within me to be like the mark of the workman imprinted on his work. When I reflect on myself, I not only know that I am something imperfect, incomplete, and dependent on another, which incessantly aspires after something which is better and greater than myself, but I also know that He on Whom I depend possesses in Himself all great things toward which I aspire, and that not indefinitely or potentially alone, but really, actually, and infinitely, and thus He is God. For just as faith teaches us that the supreme felicity of the Other Life consists only in this contemplation of the Divine Majesty, so we continue to learn by experience that a similar meditation, though incomparably less perfect, causes us to enjoy the greatest satisfaction of which we are capable in this life. This meditation and reflection of who we are in the eyes and in the heart of the Intelligent Creator shines light on this seemingly precarious path called life. I shall now open my eyes, I shall not stop my ears, I shall recall all of my senses, and confess my beliefÖ

WHERE FAILURE BOWS TO GRACE
This is Home: where failure bows to graceÖ

ALL MY HEROES HAVE FALLEN EXCEPT FOR ONE (for my dad)
I know a man whose genuine heart of gold is not hard to see / And I know a man whoís clothed in wisdom, strength, and dignity /And every hero that Iíve ever had has fallen except for one / And in this world of silver and of gold I can find nothing greater /Than to be your son /I know a man who raised his son in ways of righteousness / And I know a man whose son desires to make him proud and nothing less /And every hero that Iíve every had has fallen except for one / And in this world of silver and of gold I can find nothing greater /Than to be your son /And every hero that Iíve ever had has fallen except for one / And in this world of lofty dreams I can find nothing greater /Than to be your son / And my father is a man among all menÖ

A SERBIAN PSALM FOR AN EIDELWEIS (for my mom)
Grace itself never possessed the great mercy that you did grant /Strength itself never stood as firm and wisdom itself never uttered such meaning (as you) /And even on a cloudless day the sun never shone as bright as your heart in a heartless and darkened world /And if your son wanders a million miles you will find him in one /For love itself never knew the love, the perfect love you show your daughter and your sons /Overcast skies, Violent storms Ė never kept the eidelweis from growth / Let the snows of Austria reflect what I already know /Of all the angelic things Iíve heard and beautiful sights Iíve seen / You are the model of what I could only dream to be /Faith itself never believed so strong in what you do believe /Perseverance itself never knew the way you see things through like you do /Courage itself never had the strength to stand in the face of what others wouldnít, of what others simply couldnít /And even on a cloudless night the stars never shone as bright as your heart in a heartless and darkened world /Your love for me runs deeper than all the fruitless things Iíve done /For love itself never knew the love, the perfect love you show your daughter and your sons /You raised me to love my neighbor / And you raised me to love my family /And you raised me in ways of righteousness / And for that there are not enough thanks to speak /Overcast skies, Violent storms Ė never kept the eidelweis from growth / Let the snows of Austria reflect what I already know /Of all the angelic things Iíve heard and beautiful sights Iíve seen / You are the model of what I could only dream to be, only wish to beÖ

OF PURITANS AND LEPERS
The human heart can only take so much / But the Christian spirit must never give up heart /Avoid the places where halos are broken / And devils horns never felt so sharp Where puritans embrace the lepers Let the sun not rise on the road that Iíve forsaken / Sacrificing petty wants for a greater gain /Shelter begs for you from under blood red skies at dawn / Canít buy a furlough for the latter reign /Where puritans embrace the lepers / Where puritans are the lepers /To pray the prayer of prayers / To sing the song of songs /To devote my every breath I breathe and to right my every wrong /To remove the thorn of thorns / To give You more than more / This leper canít do it, so help me LordÖ

DRAGONFLY
Iíve tread along paths of gold / Iíve sailed upon seas of old / But never in all stories told / Was a treasure found as fair as you /You were my every wish granted / My every dream come true / And if I had the world to give / I would have given it to you /With heartfelt wings I flew above this painful world / My sanctuary was found in you / Refuge from the storms /You were my every wish granted / My every dream come true / And if I had the stars to give / I would have given them to you (still I tried) /I tread along paths of gold / I sailed along seas of old / But never in all stories told / Was a treasure found as fair as you (so I thought) /I gave you all of me and still you tread me underneath your feet /You thanked me for my love with a lie / And in my darkest hour your absence mocked at me /My so-called treasure turned out to be foolís gold / Thatís all it ever was, foolís goldÖ

A WINTERíS HOPE
When you lose a piece of yourself never to see it again /Hope will carry you on and sustain you forever and ever and everÖ

THE STRUGGLE OF SERVITUDE
The hardest thing in my life is serving You / All the trials, all the pain, all the tears that Iím constantly going through /Your Word says Youíre with me / But sometimes I just canít see You, or feel You, or hear You /And sometimes I simply donít know what to do / The hardest thing in my life is serving YouÖ

JANE DOE
So tell me, why do you slap the hand / The hand that extends itself to care for you /The hand that extends itself to protect you and provide for you and do nothing less than respect you? /So tell me, why do you grasp the hand / The hand that extends itself to harm you /The hand that extends itself to neglect you and cheat on you and do the very minimal for you? /So tell me, whoís to blame / The one who abuses or the one who allows the abuser to abuse? /There is no excuse or justification for how your treated / There is also no excuse for not walking through that door /Sticks and stones never made sense, and words never hurt so bad / I wonít say I told you so, but I told you soÖ

NEMESIS
Due to sinful nature you became my nemesis / I knew temptation well but never like this /I toss and I turn, I canít sleep at night / Wishing to dream of ridding this thorn in my side /I stumble as I walk, move on and fall again / At times itís so hard to pray yet so easy to sin /Thereís only so much I can do, Iím just a man / But when I let go and let God, thatís when I can /I put pressure on myself but Satan rubs it in / Still I refuse to use Godís grace as an excuse to sin /For He gives me second chances again and again / My prayer plus Christís blood equals a forgiven man /I stumble as I walk, move on and fall again / At times itís so hard to pray yet so easy to sin /Thereís only so much I can do for Iím just a man / But when I let go and let God, thatís when I can /Well of Mercy, you never run dry / Couldnít fall from Godís love even if I triedÖ

THE ANGELIC FACE WITH A SERPENTíS TONGUE
Find the lost child / The one with no clean clothes / The one with no food in their stomach / The one with no education /The one with no family / The one with no warm shelter / And bring them into your compound /Give them clean clothing / Give them food for their hunger / Give them an education / Give them a large family /And when they act up, disrespectfully or rebelliously (like most kids and youth do), remind them Ė but in the love of Christ (of course) Ė /That without YOU they would be nothing / That without YOU they would have nothing /That without YOU they would forever be lost in a world of poverty and illness, like youíre some type of holy and infallible saviour /Words as weapons of mass destruction aimed at the hearts of a ďRanch Of His KidsĒ by the orphanage founder herself /A cruel spirit hiding behind a mask of charity / The angelic face with a serpentís tongueÖ

WHERE EXCESSIVENESS KILLS POTENTIAL
So this is life? That I should just sit back and watch the crap that you indulge in, allowing me to say nothing lest I get labeled as uncool or politically incorrect? Well, Iím through being cool and I defy your cop-out labels. And thatís all your labels are Ė cop-outís, because youíre afraid to talk to someone like me face to face for fear that you just might actually be wrong for once. And thatís exactly the kind of attitude that keeps us as humans from evolving Ė evolving into something more intelligent, evolving into something more understanding, evolving into something much more than we are now. And it all begins with one person: you, and the cessation of your self-destructive ways. I said it all begins with one person: you, and the end of your death-led ways. Am I self-righteous because I adhere to a Straightedge philosophy, because I donít drink, because I donít smoke, because I donít do drugs, because I donít participate in promiscuous sex? No, Iím not better than the next person and Iím superior to none. But I canít stand to watch anyone, especially the youth who have their whole lives ahead of them and possess so much potential, destroy themselves and regress into a lower state of being. Itís just not the way we were meant to be. But you think itís so cool to smoke your pot, to get high, to inject that poison into your veins (not to mention ďintoĒ your soul). You think itís so cool to be seen with that bottle in hand, to drink the night away, to get your stupid little buzz. And to think some actually look forward to the parties where getting high, getting drunk, and getting laid are seen as ďthe good lifeĒ. What fools. And to think that we have sunk so low as a human race. Thereís more to life than that. And one day when you have children of your own, what then? What will you tell then about how mommy or daddy used to act? What will you tell them when itís your kids who are getting high, getting drunk, sleeping around, completely degrading themselves? Will you just call it apart of growing up? So if they wind up in a casket due to an overdose or a car accident while DUI, will it still just be a part of growing up? What then? Or will you enjoy your foolishness now, simply grow out of it, and severely punish your children for doing the things you once did? Hypocrite. Canít you see, there is a way that seems right to a person but in the end it only leads to death. Canít you see, thereís so much to life that you are missing out on, youíre cheating yourself. The road to self-respect and empowerment is a narrow one, but in the end it leads to life. You were meant for more! You werenít born just to die. You were created by a loving God who knew you while you were still in the womb, and He wants to see you live your life, to save your life, and to create a cycle of positivity, strength, and wisdom as opposed to the cycle of self-destruction that can plague one generation of a family to another. For the sake of yourself, for the sake of your family, for the sake of your loved oneís Ė stop killing yourself, and liveÖ


HOW CAN YOU SMOKE POT WITH BROKEN ARMS?
Light it up and take a puff / IS your life really that screwed up? / Or are you just plain stupid? / To smoke your chronic, your endo, or whatever you call it? / Don't you know you're killing brain cells? / And since your IQ is obviously not very high, you'll be braindead by age 35 / Your drugs suck and if you do drugs then you suck too / Just looking for a cowardly way to have fun / When it somes to humans you're as weak as they come / Cash in your dignity and check your self respect at the door / With all the treasures in life, you're oh so poor / Get right or get left, or be Self-Destruction's little whore...


THE TEST RESULTS ARE IN AND YOU'VE GOT 2 MINUTES TO LIVE
Chicken hawk, I see you, hovering over your prey / Playing whatever game you need to play just to get your lay / What comes around goes around and best believ I'm gonna laugh / When you fall on your face from your lies and your ways / There's no such thing as Superman and so you're gonna pay / A shattered heart of your own, a fatherless child, or AIDS / Have some respect and never forget, you must pay your moral debt / You think you're strong but you're oh so weak / But all debts incurred are debts that must be paid / Will your demise be worth the lay? / Fall! Oh heartless one / A loser to the very end...


FLAG BURNERS SHOULD GET THE DEATH PENALTY
The good ol' US of A / Land of the free, Home of the brave / You cry about religious intolerance - so go to Afghanistan / You cry about civil rights - so go to Iran / You cry about what you dislike about our great land / But you won't move elsewhere, you sorry excuse for a man / Go to China and try to whine / And get shot in the head for reciting those lines / You ungrateful being / Count your blessings / We may not be right in everything we do / But we are still the most free nation on earth / And not because of people like you / Semper fi - Do or die...


YOU MOCK MY BELIEFS BUT WE'LL SEE WHO'S LAUGHING ON JUDGEMENT DAY
You mock my beliefs and laugh at my faith / On TV or in your songs, but never to my face / Coward / Your disbelief doesn't make it non-existent / But what's in my heart will be so until the very end / And you can't stop me, ever / You'll have to cut my throat to keep me from speaking it / You'll have to cut out my heart to keep me from living it / But even if you kill me and burn my body to the ground / My ashes will cry out in victory and in honor to God / The persevereing sound / The undying sound / The sound of strength and wisdom and salvation / You might silence some but never the Message of Christ / It's stronger than you and your evil ways / So mock my beliefs and laugh at my faith / But we'll see who's laughing on judgement day...

THANKS (taken from Demo #2):
To The Following Who Make This World A Better Place: The One, True, Living God (for life temporal, for life eternal); Mom and Dan (the type of love youíve given me cannot be measured by mere words, neither can my thanks); Dad (my hero); Jennifer (since 1975, my best friend); Joe (thereís nothing in this world I love more than you, bro); Frank (for being so cool to me and so good to my sister); Linda (a warm welcome); Bobby, Dave, Allison, Andrea, April, Byron, Hoss, Corey, Gerry, Redneck Rick (for being some real, down to earth, unconditionally loving friends Ė you all helped me through some of my darkest hours); to anyone else at L.I.F.E. that truly cares for me (you know exactly who you are); Mikey (at Inflictions Tattoo in Covina for the sic tatts and the hook-ups); St. Stevenís Serbian Orthodox Cathedral in Alhanbra; everyone from the ďoldĒ First Foursquare Church of Santa Cruz; St. Josephís Catholic Church in Capitola; my extended family in California, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Yugoslavia (Stojic), Ireland (Moore), Mexico (Lopez), and anywhere else my bloodline infects; and to you, the listener of this demo for simply taking the time to listen to what one man has to say. Lastly, this demo is dedicated to the greatest nation on the planet and to its people Ė the United States Of America. To our enemies she says ďDonít Tread On MeĒ, for it truly is the land of the free and the home of the brave. It was my blessing to serve you as a U.S. Marine for six yearsÖ

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