Friday, January 21, 2011

forgive me
if it takes a while
to translate you
back into friend
from lover

those are such similar
dialects
but just foreign enough
to one another
to cause confusion
and frustration
between them

compline

let the love of Christ surround us
all throughout the coming night
let His promises be to us
warmth and shelter and true light

guard us from the dark around us
guard us from the dark inside
let us rest within Your comfort
to the morning be our Guide

glory to You, righteous Father
glory to You, holy Son
glory to You, glorious Spirit
glory to You, three in one

psalm: a blessing

and now
may the Lord bless you–

may He give you what you need
more than what you want

may He give you the desire to
seek what He loves

may He grant you many sons and daughters
though you may long walk in solitude

and may the Lord keep you–

may He hold you in His strong arms
and carry you through the night

may He guard you from the weariness
all around and within you

may He hold your hands and lead you
down the good paths He’s paved

and may the Lord turn the glory of His face
toward you so that you might see Him and live

for He has already poured His grace out on you
from His broken body, from His righteous throne, in holy flame

may the Lord give you the shalom
that is already here but not yet fulfilled

may He restore all your broken walls
may He rebuild all your broken hope

may He transform your words to action
and your dreams into His praise

may you ever be His
may we ever be His people

amen.

meditation on the incarnation

Mary, did you know
that your baby boy
the deity in flesh
would give you sleepless nights
would ask you a million questions
would have to learn how to walk
would get skinned knees and blisters
would get startled by loud noises

did you know that he would just
take off one day to the wilderness

did you know you’d fear for his sanity
for his safety
for his life

did you know you would have to
watch him die

Mary, did you have to wrap
your head around the fact
that He came to redeem you
that one day even your knee
the knee where he sat
and listened to your bedtime stories
that knee will bow before him
in worship as earth’s true King

maybe not
but I suppose
that all of it
was worth it

meditation on a line by toplady

nothing in my hands i bring

they lie here empty
open
waiting

to be held

to be taken hold of
and led

to be filled

to be lifted up
by stronger arms

to be closed around
a promise
a gift
sorrow
joy
all of the above

to be

and now i know
the way the apple feels
when the blade pierces
and strips away
its scarlet cloak
bit by bit

oh vengeful God
why must You give
only to take away
and i still bless Your name

Friday, January 14, 2011

evergreen

Evergreens
dig their roots down deep
stretch their branches toward the stars

They never grow weary
in the wintry storms
they hold fast to their life

they are constants
they are strength

and in the bleak midwinter
they sacrifice themselves
to light and color
to bring others joy

no wonder they are crowned with stars
no wonder they are clothed in glory

oh mighty tree
you keep growing
in the soil of a country
i can no longer call home

but the sweetness of your fragrance
won't let me go