All Help Is Here

“Prayer should take up and turn towards the spiritual order all the powers of our mental, emotional, and volitional life. Prayers should be the highest exercise of these powers; for here they are directed to the only adequate object of thought, of love, and of desire. It should, as it were, lift us to the top of our condition, and represent the fullest flowering of our consciousness. For here we breathe the air of the supernatural order, and attain according to our measure that communion with Reality for which we were made.” Evelyn Underhill

Look at the empty, wealthy night

The pilgrim moon!

I am the appointed hour,

The “now” that cuts

Time like a blade.

I am the unexpected flash

Beyond “yes,” beyond “no,”

The forerunner of the Word of God.

Follow my ways and I will lead you

To golden-haired Suns,

Logos and music, blameless joys,

Innocent of questions

And beyond answers:


For I, Solitude, am thine own self:

I, Nothingness, am thy All.

I, Silence, am thy Amen!           

Thomas Merton

Hope

Seems an awful precarious vessel

By which would flow

You, or any part of You.

Even my wonder at Your goodness is

Too unreliable, too simple.

Part of and maybe the magic is

You’re to be hoped in:

No matter our fragility

Lack of dependability

Whimpering, stinking inadequacy.

You and all Your

Tendrils of light keep

Warming:

Teasing to hope.

Blessedly Forced Reckoning


Shhhh…. He whispers.

With so many words

This breeze

Ailments-forcing-downtime

A rocked-jacked-up-unexpected-turn-of-events

Forced inactivity

This fragility I’m tempted to begrudge

Turns out’s my greatest asset

As it makes room

For all His goodness

That I temporarily forgot

In all my (quite-temporary-and-posing-as) capability.

Oh, Lord,

How majestic is

– Not just Your Name –

But Your way

You

Light as a feather

Heavy as a mountain

More besides and all the in betweens

Wild

Sweet

Huge

Complete

Staggered, lonely, and full am I

With such a God as You

You Are

And Everywhere

Help us see YOU

Help! (Don’t worry… Think: road trip playlist. Good and fun helping.)

Hey, WordPress friends. 

I’m looking ahead to a 9+ hour car trip. 

That means lots of time to listen to music. 

Because I’ve been cultivating all things mom and wife for the last 16 years, I’m a little outta touch with all things new and music. It used to be the center of my universe – and it’s gaining momentum again since the kids are older – but there’s been something of a new-music lag in recent years. 

I’ve been racking my brain for my old favorites, but since I’m also a lover of the new and the old-but-forgotten, I was wondering if you’d be willing and/or interested in passing along your favorite songs? With the exception of polka and Sourthern gospel, I’ll listen to just about anything (and my kids will be in the car, so it can’t be explicit either.) I love a good lyric (Y’know, ’cause words keep me sane), but love all things melodic, harmonic, rhythmic, etc. and so forth. 

In other words, if you were anticipating a road trip in these days of the amazing and practically automatic playlist what tunes would you include? 

Bring it, people! Let’s make the best play list EVER! I promise I’ll think of you when I hear the song, but if that’s not incentive enough, please include your blog address with your song title(s). In keeping with the driving theme, at least we could make traffic (as in “traffic to your blog” and any driving traffic I may run into) pleasant, palatable, and productive!

Thanks in advance for sweetening some spaces!

Premeditated Posturing


Nothin’ like my wretched to bring out yours.

And you may mind me saying,

But there’s nothin’ like your wretched to bring out mine.

I know you’re not trying to NOT know me,

But you’re not trying TO either.

It’s hard to hug so much premeditated posturing,

And I’m sorry I walk away disappointed in you.

I don’t know why.

Your refusal to know me

Is just another reflection of my own ugliness.

This isn’t all there is.

Praise His Name –

This isn’t all there is.

Bear with me,

I’ll bear with you and

Shed this outgrown itchy skin

For a fresh one

That gleams and shines

‘Neath the light.

Inviting, welcoming,

Ready and new for receiving all you offer, it’s

Impermeable to stings and scratches.

Forgive my absorption of your ugliness:

– please disregard it –

As if I didn’t have my own to be rid of,

I’ve gone and lazily let yours ooze through.

Like so much poison all our transgressions

May mingle and choke out the healthy

If we’re not careful.

I know better.

A better way

An excellent way

A less garment-like way;

One that doesn’t have to be changed nor shed

One that is rooted in – Who is – love and righteousness.

Who never tires, nor offends, nor spoils.

Who extends love to a thousand generations.

Make us so, Lord.

Forgive these petty (though still dire) offenses,

Be our love and

Thank You for Yours.


I’d be a well meaning but destructive spectator in this wide world of perils:

Free the butterfly from his cocoon

The spider from his molt

Quicken the buffalo calf from the wolves’ pursuit

Make all the carnivores vegetarians.

I’d upset the natural order of things in favor of less:

Less effort, less running, less power

Thereby weakening all things and

Have the place overrun.

Instead of shrinking and fearing all these threats,

I pray to meet them as He’s directed:

Be strong and courageous

Not lettuce leaf wilt

‘Neath what would challenge.

Head up, shoulders back, forehead like flint

May I take hold of a freely offered inheritance as

Little conqueror.

Rally

“Lacking in nothing”

Oh, the wonder of this –

This puny puddle

Rallies a little

A slack everything

Perks up with the suggestion

And thrills

To think

It possible

Reclamation

The fullness and

Scope of this

Gulf Stream life

And I’m right saturated and

Even bogged down while moved along.

Regardless of my desire for calmer (stagnant?) waters
I’m the mom

For all practical purposes

But all I feel is to be

“Like butter spread over too much bread”*

*Bilbo Baggins

All these children’s questions

Charge the particles

In my like-an-old-school-tv’s

Snowy insides:
Instead of jolting to life,

Every word

Zaps already taut and sensitive fibers

And this tired old battery sparks only to grinding.
Proof again

That mere machinations

Aren’t the source of life and

Just-function won’t sustain any of us.

Without the proper mechanic’s lifeblood to

Recalibrate all these lifeless moving parts we’re all just

Bound for the junk heap.

Overdue

I wheel myself in for inspection:

Open the hood

Expose the innards

Wait for His assessment.

It took me way longer to get here than it takes for Him to look.

Surprisingly gentle, thorough, and quick

He fusses with something (I don’t see what) and
I expect the damage report – as ever –

To be that this time I’ve ridden too far, too long

Without this scrutiny, this help, this exposure.

Instead, He bids me turn the ignition and

– Expecting dead space –

A deep resonant purr sounds instead.

Instead of more static misfires and sparks

A healthy hum of life and connection fires full and throaty.

Smiling

I shake my head in wonder and thanks and

Roll forward back into the stream

Anticipating a new horizon and steady current to

Carry me along, the Master Mechanic’s prints? My map.

Thank You.

Relief

A new peace descends
It’ll probably be displaced by some scurrying, unexpected,

Terrible trouble

But –

For this moment

Trouble, lofty pursuits,

“Grander” things

(Than savoring a bit of quiet)

Seem a little trumped up

Falsely grand

(a little silly?).

I don’t mean to judge

It’s just that

This new peace that’s descended

Seems enough to accomplish most anything

– Seems like everything –

Without lots of trying

And I do hope that this basking

Will serve to extend it

If even a little further…
Thank You, Lord.
Psalm 34:10

James 1:4

Jesus Is

  

Jesus is kinda punk rock
No warning 

Unpredictable

All freedom

‘Cept drive’s not gone awry: 

No violence serving ignoble purposes

– He’s still hardcore –

Tumultuous and jarring as a mosh pit

He’s not all piety and whispers

But He is clean

Sometimes quiet

Reorienting 

Jesus is kinda Baroque:

Orderly 

Beautiful

Calming, invigorating

Jesus is kinda hippy:

Free, earthy

Not bound to norms

Colorful

Airy

Akin to blowin’ with the wind

Jesus is kinda conservative

Fitted too for suits

Intentional, shrewd, spot on, exacting, rigorous.

Calm, cool, collected

And still authentically authentic

As lion, lamb, dove, serpent.

No wonder all these appeal and

– Each but a strain of a more excellent way –

Speak to us

Trouble is, err too much on the side of one

And the others get forsaken.

Why not dig deep

Stretch a little and

Embrace smatterings of each 

Unabashedly

All out

Orderly 

Wild

Earthy

Carefully

Taste and see all the richness 

Of the one in the many

Not make up a limited mind 

Held in and unfinished

Towards one and only best way

But all in, eyes open, ready to see The Way

As it – as He – chooses to present

And so regard with love and awake to those

Who wear His other colors

And so 

Regard

The Him in the them