Unguarded

I have been unguarded —
O God, I confess it!
Day by tedious day, night by long night
I strain and struggle as though
your peace is illusory, as though it is
the stuff of dreams and platitudes
and fairytales at bedtime.
But goblins and trolls are cordial
compared to the fear and violence of humanity
warring against itself, and I have not
guarded my own wounds
let alone
reached out to share
blankets of solace, shelters of peace
with sisters and brothers weary
from this storm, drenched
by generations of
vindictiveness and degradation
against personhood, against the beauty of life.
If there is peace to be known,
O my God, I have not understood it.
If there is peace to be found, I confess O God
that I have preferred to sit myself down
and keep company with
lament
who is a more faithful companion
than peace, that elusive heartbreaker.
But lament has no desire
to guard the heart
or to grant a harbor to love
so I find myself fractured and hallucinating
that peace is foolhardy, that the storm is strength
and I guard myself
with the storm
which is
I think
not exactly
what you recommend.
You are welcome, O God, to surpass my understanding.

on Philippians 4:7

cemetery-angel

Lent 33

Creating & Advocating God,
would that we (like you)
could speak a word and
it would come into being!

Then we would say, “Love!” and suddenly
all would be their brothers’ keepers.

We would say, “Peace be with you!”
and the wars between us would cease.

“Justice!” would no longer be lip service
but actual restitution and restoration.

“Healing!” would not be a prayer for tidy solutions
but a commitment to join the messy work.

If we spoke “Truth!” it would step off its soapbox
to open its ears and to love people’s stories.

And proclamations of “Faith!” would not
burrow in pulpits and bibles but take
long strolls of curiosity, share songs of joy,
trust in the least of these for its very livelihood,
and give hearts the courage to grow together.

on James 2:14

Lent 32

There’s my Peace: rising with the sun
and kissing my face on the breeze.

There’s my Peace: laughing in conversation
and warming hands with mugs of hot tea.

There’s my Peace: standing in determined solidarity
and raising her fist against the pressures of hell.

There’s my Peace: walking when there’s no strength to run
and blooming before the calendar turns to spring.

There’s my Peace: She has not stopped shining and
showing up, though tears blurred my vision.

There’s my Peace: She  knows the playbook of every lullaby
and every rallying cry to embolden my spirit.

There’s my Peace: and at her side is Joy
and together we are unafraid.

on John 15:27