Monday Muse 2020

First Monday. We’re alive. I’m writing and you’re reading. Grace has lifted us once again. How shall we respond?

I write. It’s a compulsion. Sometimes words illumine a way out of a thought jungle. Worry; the great canopy of blocking the light of day. Vines, creepy-crawlies, and unknown sounds and furies. I gotta admit, and I have, that the older I get, the more I am prone to worry. Anxiety strangles the heart, mine at least.

The heart is the matter. What’s the matter with my heart? That question’s been dogging me for quite some time now. So, on the first Monday of this decade I broke out my bible app and entered ‘heart’ in the search box. The verses pertaining to the heart are many, and the conclusion is God cares about hearts. More than ‘likes’ on social media. More than the 24 hour news cycle. More than information and opinions and bowl games. If you have a bible app, look for yourself.

Listen to these verses with your heart…

“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”

Philippians 4:6 and 7 The  Message.

What is the center of our humanness? Our hearts of course! God’s desire is for our hearts to be wide open with Him. This doesn’t come naturally to me. Often I get flamboozled into thinking I can’t trust God with my heart. The realization hits only after I’ve stonewalled God, and am deep into self-protection mode. Think of the reasoning in that! I need to protect myself from God? If there’s a need for protection then I might as well join AA (Atheists Anonymous). I’ve said before ‘If God isn’t good, what good is God?’

Make no mistake, if the verse says fret not, God knows our tendencies. God knows where our hiding places are and He is perfect at hide and seek. Once God even sent Jesus to look for us.

This I pray:

That our hearts will be flung open to the goodness of God. That like water to wine, worry will turn into praise because of Jesus, our only hope. Amen

God Joined Me for a Drink

The trickle of unconsciousness

filled the tin cup.

I couldn’t handle the half empty

of hope and a future.

 

I drank and drank to quench

the mystery of the largess of God.

But God had salted the water

and assaulted my soul with an eternal thirst.

 

He held out his hand

and I set the dented tin

over the scar imbedded

in His lifeline.

 

He poured into my eyes,

right through and down

to the bottom of my arid heart.

This Tin-man echo of mine.

 

“Here, take, drink of this cup

In remembrance of Me.”

The chalice, cool in my grasp,

brimmed with blood red wine.

 

A sip of God consciousness.

 

“Do this in remembrance of me.” Jesus

 

Of Theorems and Theology

Is Jesus the theory of everything?

Can we walk together in a unified field,

so wherever I go, there He is?

 

Is Jesus a string through it all,

wending, weaving like a thread?

Does He carry us along its cord?

 

Did Jesus split history like an atom?

Is He a super conductor,

able to collide like an iconoclast?

 

Come, be my theory of everything.

Come, tie Your string around my finger.

Come, collide, and split me open.

 

The Skylight is Falling, The Skylight is Falling.

There’s a hole in our roof. More like an aperture. In the middle of our kitchen is a skylight…an upside down crater in the ceiling. The window has fallen into disrepair, and every time I look up I see not only natural light, but mold, bubbled paint, and another opportunity to procrastinate.

So, last night, after a long and arduous day helping the heavy-set, white haired, red dressed icon from the north, I went “up on the roof” (Do you hear the song in your head? Youtube the Drifters.)

There is a big difference between channeled light and being out in the light. I was no longer simply looking through the skylight, but under the great big sky. The sun had run off to illumine another side of the earth, and I stood above the skylight and cricked my neck. I heard the melancholy moan of a train, and a drone of a plane. Clouds sporadically tip-toed by. Stars twinked at me in the gaps.

I sat for a moment.

“When this old world starts a getting you down…” (Cue the Drifters)

Well, yes and no. If the newsfeed spoon-feeds my anxious thoughts, rather than summons compassion and prayers, I get more “down.”  Just what are we to do with all this inflowmation? Then I thought of the skylight.

God is in charge of the satellite-skies as Mark Heard describes them. The square of sunshine graced to us is our piece of presence. Our little light, you know, the one that we’re gonna shine, is like the holey roof, the aperture which God’s great light can focus on a dark portion of this world.

Is there a possibility we all might be skylights? Sure, many, like mine, are in need of some repair, but hey, light still shines through. It shines in place, my place in the world.

“I am the light of the world.” Jesus

Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me today to be a little light in the dark places. Shine through me. Amen

By the way, the skylight is not falling, it is filling. Filling you to spill light on your place in the world.

Sunday Two Step

Jesus, keep me from deifying

Gravity with those memories

Of self-pining, pinned down,

Fastened to floors of unforgiving.

 

Lord Jesus, Come help me defy

Gravity, grant moments

Of rising above

With leaps of grace and mercy.

 

When I walk, may it be light

Obedient steps

Morphing into a dervish dance

While gravity spirals away.

Middle Distance

The mystery is there.

The challenge is there.

It is there where ideas

Are transformed in

Their forming.

 

It is where we look

When a question gives

Us pause.

It is where truth

Begs to be handled.

 

It lies between myopia

And dystopia.

It is beyond this moment

But before infinity.

Unsettling middle distance.

 

“Who do you say that I am?”

 

 

Mark 8:29

Loafer

I don’t want to loaf around,

I want to live.

I want to end well.

 

Oh Bread of Life,

Ever more give me slice after slice.

Even crusts of Christ’s body,

 

The You that is hard to swallow,

Help me to wash it down

With Your blood.

 

I believe, help my disbelief,

Unbelief in You

oh Manna Man.

 

I want to be a lifer,

Not a loafer, yet, a loafer

I shall be. I want the whole loaf.

 

“I Am that bread of life.” Jesus

Gratitude and Grace and Truth

In the end I will hand my last breath over to God.

I will assume all previous breaths were my own.

I will claim all beats of heart were an act of my will.

When my toes touched the floor each morning

I take for granted that God let me live another day.

 

In this parenthesis of time, this apparent thesis,

God coaches, God reminds me to take deeper breaths.

God meets me at the edge of my bed and gifts

me with five senses to inhabit his world.

I am gently reminded of the grace I live in.

 

“All is grace,” said Manning.

“Find the grace to lay truth bare,” said Cockburn.

Don’t ask the question and walk away

like Pilate, stay and wait for possibility.

Grace and truth walked among us then.

Please walk with me Jesus and increase my heart rate.

 

John 1:17 (KJV)

For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

John 1:14 (KJV)

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

God Joined Me for a Drink. A Sunday Psalm.

The trickle of unconsciousness

filled the tin cup

I dragged along the bars.

I couldn’t handle the glass half empty

of hope and a future.

I drank and drank to quench

the mystery of the largess of God.

Instead, God salted the water

and assaulted my soul

with an eternal thirst.

He held out his hand

and I set the dented tin

over the scar imbedded

in His lifeline.

He looked in my eyes,

right through and down

into my arid heart.

“Here, take, drink of this cup

In remembrance of Me.”

The chalice, cool in my grasp,

brimmed with blood red wine.

I sipped and sipped

of God’s consciousness.

 

“…you have kept the good wine until now.” John 2:10