Truth?

I heard a man speak words that were quite true
He’d done his research and his facts were straight
And yet, it seemed his words were all askew
For as he spoke his words were filled with hate

No love no grace no mercy did I see
In what he railed against those he opposed
Perhaps he thought “the truth will set them free”
But doors he might have opened he had closed

And then I thought, “what words might I have said,
That although ‘right’ were mere self-righteousness”
If I can’t speak the truth with love instead…
And if I cannot find a way to bless…

Then I’ll be silent, for there’s nothing worse
Than truth devoid of Love which is a curse

Epiphany

The Heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork – Psalm 19:1 (ESV)

We are too rational by far to think
that twinkling stars above might guide our fate
wise people follow science, reason, facts
and won’t let flaming balls of gas dictate
their course – and yet

a star was seen by those who watched the sky
they saw the Heavens speak of glorious things
in haste they packed their bags and journeyed forth
and bringing gifts they went to seek a King
and yet we call

them Wise Men who were guided by that star
who knew not of our scientific ways
Why don’t we call this group the “Foolish Men”
astrologers who did nothing but gaze
at stars – and yet

although they knew not what is known now:
that stars can’t tell the things that should be done,
Their foolishness defied what we think wise
and soon instead of stars they saw the Son

~~

In the Church Calendar, January 6 is Epiphany – the day in which the visit of the Magi (Wise Men) is celebrated. I was struck by the fact that these men were pagan astrologers…and yet God used their beliefs – even their pseudo-science – to draw them to Him




Some thoughts on Healing and Reconciliation

We live in a broken world. Almost every day, we find ourselves hurt by someone else. Almost every day, we find ourselves hurting someone else – often without intending to do so, but we hurt others none-the-less. Most often, these are minor issues that are easily apologized for, and just as easily forgiven. But what happens when the injustice is much larger? What if an abuse has been systemic and long-term? Can healing take place?

I believe that harm is not only inflicted on the victim, but damage is done to the soul of the perpetrator of a crime as well…so can healing and reconciliation take place?

If you have harmed me, I cannot force you to apologize – and if you choose to never apologize, can I heal? Yes. Through forgiveness, I can heal, regardless of your lack of apology – regardless of you not even accepting my forgiveness

If I have harmed you, I cannot force you to forgive me. I can repent. I can apologize with full sincerity, but I can never coerce forgiveness from you. Through the act of repentance, and the act of forgiving myself for the crime I have committed, I believe that yes, I can be healed from the damage I have done to myself for what I have done against you.

One caveat to both of the above:  I cannot truly repent, nor can I truly forgive without the grace of God – it is only through God’s love that I can ever find the strength to forgive.  It is only through God’s love that I can ever find the courage to admit my faults.

Healing can be hard.  It’s hard to admit my faults.  It’s probably even harder to forgive you for your faults – but I think that reconciliation is harder yet.  Reconciliation is the restoration of relationship.  It is the laying aside of differences.  It is not merely mutual toleration, but mutual love.

I can apologize to you, but if you will not forgive, we are not reconciled

I can forgive you, but if you have no regret for pain that you have caused me, we are not reconciled

It is only when the perpetrator of an act is truly repentant and apologizes to his victim…and…when the victim of an act is truly willing to forgive that reconciliation can begin.

I might be a mutant

I may be a mutant, but you’d never know
there’s strange things about me that mostly don’t show
abilities: magical, mystical, rare
(or maybe those mutant-like skills are not there)

I’ve never shot laser beams out of my eye
my touch cannot freeze things, nor make them to fry
I’ve managed to fly (even once in the rain)
but each time I’ve flown it has been on a plane

I might be a mutant, I cannot be sure
and if I’m a mutant, there’s prob’ly no cure
I don’t think that I am contagious at least
(but what if I am? I might make you a beast!)

Is there a support group for those who like me
are likely not mutants, but still they might be
for those who can’t stretch to a mile in length
and do not possess super-human-like strength?

I might be a mutant, and you might be too
and we “might-be-mutants” in number are few
so can we agree to watch each other’s back
in case some non-mutant decides to attack?

Do you perhaps know of a way I can know
if I have mutations that maybe don’t show?
Then tell me the answer – (just think it out plain
I’ll find out the next time that I read your brain)

Parables of Earth – Part IX

Those seeds that fall on fertile land will grow
much better than those which land upon weed
or rock covered ground. Would it be fair, though,
to assume this is the fault of the seed?
By no means! The seeds are all alike. They
all hold the same potential. That is why
The Farmer takes such great care in the way
He tends to His earth: He knows seeds rely
on their environment. Likewise, when we
meet those who seem to struggle in this life,
do not be quick to judge, but look and see:
can you find ways to help them through their strife?
The Farmer loves his land, and He’s aware:
Bounty will come from ground that’s worked with care

~~

If you would like to read this cycle in its entirety (up to this point), or if you would like to read my cycles on water and fire, you can find links to those in the menu above.

Easter Sunday

The Son of God was lying in the grave
and so the Serpent bragged, “I’ve struck His heel!
For how,” he reasoned, “can a dead God save
once all the power of Hell has been revealed?”
A large stone blocked the entrance of the tomb
and those who’d followed Him would face great strife
For now, the Serpent revelled in this doom
But Grave could not hold Him who’d authored Life!
An empty place marks where his body lay
for all Death’s victories had been undone
the mighty stone was simply cast away
and brighter than the sun-rise rose The Son
For Christ, in rising, crushed the Serpent’s head
Life conquered Death, and death itself is dead

Holy Week – Saturday

Earlier in the week, I commented that my prayer this week would be that I could “dwell in the middle” of the story of Holy Week. That I would be able to ponder and contemplate the week that lead up to Christ’s execution and burial without rushing ahead to Sunday, If anything, though, captures the “middle of the story”, I think it might be Saturday – the day that falls in between when Death crushed life, and when Life crushed death (the capitalization and lack thereof in death and life in my last sentence was deliberate)

We come now to the center of it all
the day when Christ’s death started sinking in
when those who followed knew they’d seen him fall
when thoughts of Christ were thoughts of broken skin
Christ was dead, and dead, too, was their hope
and they knew that their lives were at risk too
so now they hid, not knowing how they’d cope
false seemed the only One they’d thought was true
They thought the story now was at an end
Christ’s body now was rotting in a tomb
had all His talk been truly just pretend?
such wretched agony filled them all with gloom
But now was not the ending of the play
Another act will follow the next day!