Light of the World, Remember!

Floating through

Dragging my feet

Languishing and lazy

‘Til everyday feels like Saturday

With all its special gone.

Seeped and stuck in the sameness (and horror) of “status quo”

I settle.

Where’s my urgency?

Fight? (Not to mention “good fight”?)

Excellence-insistence?

Remembering – and repenting – paves for rallying*

                               (*rally – to rouse or recover from inactivity)

Takes energy, light.

 

Where the dark would have me still, stagnate, die off, smother, forget

Light’s instead remarkable: emitting only when electric’s current quickens the matter.

All these particles’ radiation could electrify, could be magnetic,

Push back the dark.

But only would I plug into life’s – light’s – Source

Oh, Lord, may it be so.

Only then will the scales fall

And dark and light’s difference recognized.

It’s there I’ll recognize Him:

There in Him where the real living is.

Where all the dark of wasted (death) days is forgotten and

Right remembrance and good days – enlivening, rich, beautiful, vital, and vibrant life-days are restored.

Like Paul, a blaze of light’s what’s needed, and now given.

Thank You.
Acts 26:12-18, Matthew 5:14

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A Soul’s Dawn

Those expansive desolate saturated monoculture February fields
Might tempt me towards gray and soggy.

That dissonant electric guitar wail 

Could draw me closer to fear or discomfort or distrust.

But I know what’s above the clouds and beneath the surface. 

There’s plenty of evidence of what’s not seen too. 

A smidgen of belief catalyzes right vision: no airplane’s needed to remind me of light’s sunshiney warming horizon-presence.

Some remembrance goggles is all.

Seeing through a glass darkly

Isn’t the only way to see.

A day’s heaviness of soul

Can break to light.

“I can feel it/Comin’ back again” a fitting and timely song confession cry just now for 

Grace’s scandalous help and palpable presence.

Suddenly all this light amidst all this gray

Lights up everything

And I’m reawakened and

Woken to glory.

Glory’s in every song

Every word 

Every breath

Every thought and I’m

Opened up to the pleasure and profundity and nothing’s-left-untouch-ed-ness of Love:

I’m right saturated.

A soul’s dawn 

Testimony to Life given and repentance honored.

Your condescension is Your glory, and unexpectedly, remarkably, wonderingly, my benefit, Lord.

What a wonder that simply admitting wrong, desiring better, discontent with wasted time, resources, self is enough to turn it all upside down and back to glorious where before there was just muck and gray and a slough of despond. 

What a wonder that forgiveness looks more like liberation than penance.

That turning toward the light – even when it’s not in plain sight – is enough to dispel the dark. 
And that repenting – literally “turning away from” what’s wrong is all that’s needed to turn toward that light.

That the remedy that ushers in the right comes from a willingness to face where one’s wrong.

What a blessing to serve a God Who’s much more interested in my redemption than my wretchedness.

What a joy that He gives 2nd, billionth, zillionth chances to turn toward Him and that He honors such turning every. Single. Time.

Hallelujah that the prodigal son is me and the welcoming forgiving father is Him, and it’s all real and better than I could have imagined. That I’m not just in story, but the story because it’s His story, and wonder of wonders He invites me into it.
What an opportunity to get to live into love’s inheritance and come into “love’s discovery” as the Indigo Girls sing it. 
Husband’s air guitar and

Happy belting “free fallin'” and 

Radio crooning and on the way to grocery shopping in all this gray early February day and who knew it could all be alight with wonder?

Who knew that yesterday’s despair could be today’s joy? 

Ah, love. You’ll always surprise, won’t you? 

You’re the God of the new and the old, the tiny and the magnanimous, the God of the unexpected, the grays, the rainbows, and the everything in between. 

You’re in the mud puddles and the pure waters and the failures and the successes. 

Thank You. Thank You for being available and awesome and impossibly huge and big enough to come down to the tiny. And thank You that Your coming down enlarges rather than shrinks power and purpose and love and goodness.

I’m smiling and almost overwhelmed with the goodness and the happiness of being back in my Lord’s sight.

Thank You, repentance. Thank You, redemption. 

Thank You, Lord, for these, for You, for LOVE… In all Your parts and effects.

I’m a Fool, and other Glorious Truths


As soon as I put something “out there” I want to retract it, or I feel like a fool. “Do not presume to be teachers” rings in my head if I say anything with any degree of certainty. It’s a miserable way to live, constantly second guessing everything.

It’s tempting then to want to shrink back into oblivion, not take the risk and just do my best to stay out of everyone’s way. But there’s this glowing ember of a start within me. One that would burn away all that insecurity and self loathing, years of feeling defeated and stupid. 

At first glance I thought the doubt was evil – and maybe the accuser’s always at work trying to get us to undermine our value – but when I ask God to order my thoughts, to tell me what’s true He whispers that all this unknowing can mean freedom. Not being able to nail anything down, not ever getting to a place where I feel I know anything? This can be a  glorious place, and a perfect place from which to begin. Doubt doesn’t have to result in frantic scrabbling or overwhelming defeat. It can return me safely to the one and only thing that I can know and from which everything else may stem:

You are good, God. The remembrance of that, the looking to that, the basking, seeking, celebrating of Your goodness is all that needs known. May our eyes be good in seeing the goodness that then the whole body be full of light… Flowing out to all the spaces, beating back the dark and the the unknowns and the devaluing, useless questions. 

Praise God, He is good.

“For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100:5

Hope

Seems an awful precarious vessel

By which would flow

All of You, any 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.

The Dark Won’t Hold

  
  All these words have already been used –

I can only hope not used up

Looking back on all this time 

And all these mine-times

Is like looking painfully and unaware 

At someone else’s life

That’s not so bad, I guess;

A long aching road’s

Being replaced by snatches of sunlight

That stretch and change

And quietly brighten all these inner rooms

Simple unexpected joys burn away 

(What I thought were) too many shadows

The light dances

In all these unexpected ways

(But always yearned after)

And the dark can’t hold

Praise His Name

The dark won’t hold

fear, Light, and hope

‘Hallowed be Thy name.’ When all your strength ought to be focused into one pencil of light pointing up through the darkness, you allow it to be dissipated in a moss fire where nothing is consumed, but all life is suffocated.

Dag Hammarskjold Markings p. 15

A single speck of light –

I can afford that.

This day when sanctification looks like

Getting out of bed.

But for all the blackness

A tiny tendril of light

From Him to me

Is blessedly enough.

No, Doubt,

I won’t succumb.

That pencil of light

Will hold

After all.

He’s promised it

I believe it

Hallowed be His Name!

Burdens (and their proper carrier)

Swinging on this crazy pendulum

Between all right and all wrong

Is dizzying, wildly disorienting.

Atrabilious! This brainy black bile

And I feel to be held under by all this care.

Loving ought be liberating:

Come to find out that the world’s weight

Is anything but light.

Then I look up

(A common, but too uncommon theme)

And realize that You’ve been gentlemanly

Standing, waiting

For me to lay all this burden down.

I’ve been bent over with it,

Eyes to the ground

Impossibly straining neath all this weight,

Saturated with the sweat and the load.

I look up at You (finally)

And You smile at me:

All that impossible, tender, complete, understanding, compassionate love in a look.

With nary a word – it took but a second to see you there, to remember You there –

I hand over the load.

It’s not heavy for You:

I don’t know what or how You do with it,

But it’s gone

– or completely changed into something else –

And we walk, You and I.

And there is nothing superfluous or in question

(There is little to be said in true love’s companionship,

Once the repentance is over.)

No more swinging or straining

I find that I am standing upright

Eyes straight ahead

With You

Reconciled and whole and free of all those many burdens

Ready to tackle more

Now strong and courageous

Thanks to the nothing’s-impossible-for-God

God

The next step blessedly clear

And beyond it

A burden not mine to carry.

This moment, this quiet, His assurance

All I’m responsible for.

Hallelujah!