Drenching

Sullen clouds,

shuffling,

scraping

their underbellies

on the tree line,

spilling rain.

They dredge

the tang of summer’s

possessive heat.

Twin moans of

thunder

and I am

wet with peace.

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Field Notes

In the field

among varied grasses

she waltzed with her palms

brushing the buds bowed in prayer.

 

The late summer wild flowers

dipped in heated color.

Indian paint brushes

dabbed the sky

on the edges

of towering cumulus.

 

She lay

down

in embroidery.

They neither toiled

nor spun

around the edges

of her skin.

 

Sleep planted innocence

once again

and dreams fell on her

like a steady rain.

Beauty forgave

and golden hair

brushed by the breezes

painted the bottomless sky.

When God Speaks Love. Listen to this.

The memory of a cold, windy, raining day resurfaced today.

She said in her blog God doesn’t always speak to us in a booming voice. It seems in these times God would only be heard in such a tone. It’s loud down here with all the news networks, overloaded stadiums, earthquakes, wars, scandals, overzealous weather, and the body politic. Can God get in a word edgewise?

Then there is the religious banter. A mixture of clanging cymbals and pundits with orchestral wands trying to direct every butt splintered pew sitter. There are thousands of good willed religious folk though, speaking truth through the cracks of the cacophony of mass market manipulation. Mustard seeds are handed out on an individual basis.

Am I talking too loud? Booming?

Ahem, back to the cold rainy day… It was about a decade ago when I had breakfast with a mentor. I questioned him about his dream become reality. He, retired, raised organic cows. He told me how relaxing it was to go to his farm and work his tail off. Financially free after a life as an accountant he counted heads of beef. The telling of it had me drifting off into a dream of my own and when I came-to, the reality of my dream seemed eons away.

I went to work that day feeling dumpy. The weather appeared to play into my depression with a thick blanket of clouds and gray Eeyore tones were in the air. The blustery rainy day reminded me of my state of mind with each delivery made. Long walks to doorsteps gave heavy drops opportunity to soak the brim of my hat. There was no ‘sense of urgency’ in my steps and as I gazed on the blackness of asphalt it became the mirrored darkness of my attitude.

So dark I entertained any thought that strolled through my mind. What’s the point? Who am I kidding? If I were a rich man, badadeda deda badade dah deda dum. Ah depression, my man, thanks for keeping me company…oh how I have missed our talks. Dream all you want Jerry, but eventually you wake up.

Geez, how easily I forgot all the good things in my life. All the good people too. A good God who spoke to me in the past of his love for me and the Jeremiah 29:11 words. God spoke? Past tense? God has been kinda quiet lately. Does God still love me? Is God still around?

Then I asked. Just asked. No seeking. No knocking. Just a question. I asked it loud and clear all by my lonesome. All by my lone so me.

“Do you love me?” came out like Tevye to his wife in Fiddler on the Roof. I honestly thought God’s response would be “DO I WHAT?”

Just then a gust blew through the line of pine trees I hadn’t noticed. A sound which brought a peace beyond measure beat gently on my ear drums. My favorite sound in the whole world hugged me. It took me all the way back to the huge spruce I climbed and sat in for long periods and listened. As a boy it was like a prayer shawl as I sat on the highest branch which could hold me.

That day it was as if God pursed his lips and blew across the line of pines to say “I do.”

I am thankful that God isn’t limited to shouting at us like a worn out mother to her kids in a grocery store.

Thank you, Alyssa Bacon-Liu, for igniting a memory which I hold dear.

http://www.gabbingwithgrace.com/  This is the link to Alyssa’s post entitled “When God’s Voice Doesn’t Boom” at Grace Biskie’s blog.

Just for reference…what a great song!

 

What is a way in which God spoke to you?

Emily Woke Me. The moon and stars were still awake.

Emily woke me at 1:12.

She walked the line

from her bed to mine

and I tucked her one more time.

 

At 1:17 I saw the moon

in the western sky

a sweet potato pie.

Once slice, low upon a rhyme.

 

A dipper as big as forever

over my head like a caption.

Stars were a splashin’

into my soul and onto the pines.

 

1:34 was when I lay me down again.

Goodnight moon was all I said.

I prayed twinkled stars on her head.

So thankful for how she shines.

 

Neo Narcissist

I bowed down to my reflection.

It was fractured

in the disturbed waters.

I had lost sight of the One

who said “Peace, be still.”

There were ripples

in my consciousness.

Then his hands

spread out the waters

like clear linen.

“You are beautiful,” He said, “see?”

I saw myself more clearly

next to him.

 

We sat beside the still waters.

 

The fear of allowing others in

or coming out of myself

smoothed into a lapping of our souls.

Soul waters on the shore.

 

 

“He leads me beside the still waters, He restores my soul.”  Psalm 23

Hall Light

 

She dozed off in a Stryker bed.

Her head tilted and cricked.

She mumbled and snored a bit.

It was an afternoon nap

and we just were.

 

Might I stay until bedtime

to tuck her in and say a prayer?

I’ll leave the light on and the door cracked.

I could be just down the hall

beneath that same light.

 

“Oh Father,

Come to her in her dreams like the daddy

she once adored.

 

Oh Jesus, take her hand,

like the big brother she once looked up to.

 

Oh Comforter,

Lay the baby Jesus in her dreams to hold

as she did each of us in a room such as this.

 

Oh come and be the light in the hall.

Come and be the opened door.”

 

“I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.”  Psalm 4:8  King James Version

 

As you have wished to us many times over;  Sweet dreams, mom, sweet dreams.

 

 

© Gerald Allen Barrett and parentheticallyspeakingin3d, 2012.

Bonhoeffer by Metaxas

I am about half way through the book Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas.  It has been very enlightening and challenging to observe a life threaded into a volatile and unbelievable time in our world’s history.  Metaxas’ writing of Bonhoeffer is 500 plus pages long and goes into(thus far)a very detailed look at religious angles of the Hitler ascension to power, starting with the anti-Semitism and eventually the spiritual war against all the Christians also who didn’t give allegiance to the Reich Church.  Ultimately Bonhoeffer gave his life for his resistance.

Metaxas’ writing surprised me a few times.  Descriptions added in contexts that would stop me short and think…”Now that is brilliant writing, that is funny.”  The book is very serious in a lot of respects, but the insert of apparent humor parallels Bonhoeffer’s wit amidst the fortitude he had against the impending suppressive Reich.  Here are a couple of examples:

From page 208  “Bonhoeffer followed every detail of these hemorrhoidal isometrics from England via  his mother’s almost daily updates.”

From page 242  “Heckel evaded speaking on the Jewish question by pursuing a strategy of double-barreled flatulence:”…

Metaxas descriptions often stop me  short for a moment.  Writing envy might be a way to describe it, and not only the humorous descriptions.

But this morning it was a quote from Bonhoeffer that stopped me short.

“There is no way to peace along the way of safety.  For peace must be dared, it is itself the great venture and can never be safe.  Peace is the opposite of security.  To demand guarantees is to want to protect oneself.  Peace means giving oneself completely to God’s commandment, wanting no security, but in faith and obedience laying the destiny of the nations in the hand of Almighty God, not trying to direct it for selfish purposes.  Battles are won, not with weapons, but with God.  They are won when the way leads to the cross.”  Page 241

I am still thinking on this.