Immanuel (Lent 19)

To the depths of Sheol,
hear earth’s cry for wars to cease
and bloodshed to be atoned.
Let your holy sign bloom lavishly
with every bud breaking ground this spring.

As high as heaven, O God,
witness your people’s tears outpouring
and their feet dragging in weariness.
Let your holy sign shine daily
with every sunrise proclaiming hope.

Through the diversity of all creation,
feel the bodily laughter and the heat of sweat
bringing expression to the life you’ve given.
Let your holy sign be embodied
by the flesh of your people with lovingkindness.

on Isaiah 7:11

Chariots (Lent 18)

Easy enough
to confess
when I have none.

Easy enough
to set aside
pride in horses
with no stables to fill.

Easy enough
to surrender
financial confidence
with a check sure to bounce.

More difficult, I confess,
to abandon
measures of worth
by capacity and competence.

More difficult, O LORD,
to swallow my pride
and share the road
on days when I feel lost.

More difficult, truth be told,
to accept vulnerability
to the whims of time
and the magnitude of grace.

Let me confess, O God,
pride in chariots
for easy absolution and
we’ll leave the rest for tomorrow.

on Psalm 20:7

Patience (Lent 17)

I bless the earth
for nurturing the daffodil
in secret until the robins are ready
to herald its cheery bloom.

I bless the spring peepers
for freezing solid in wintery woods
to wait faithfully until the early spring thaw
beckons love’s chorus.

I bless the sun
for biding its time through the night
without fear of shadows or stillness until the dawn
has its shades of blush ready to paint.

I bless the soloist
for lingering over and letting go of
every note so reluctantly until even eternity
holds its breath with longing.

I bless the Everlasting God
for abiding beyond hours and seasons
with mysterious patience until the rigidity of chronos
yields to the miracle of kairos for life.

Apology (Third Sunday in Lent)

I saw you trying to catch my eye, trying to hold my gaze long enough for the shields to drop, but you were too late — or perhaps too early — and I could not meet you honestly. I chased after you, to be sure, and I called your name, but I kept my distance and preferred to adore the illusion of you. Divine Love, forgive me. Try again someday, I pray.