Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

Repentance: a new direction without regret

August 15, 2011 Leave a comment

One way from istockphoto

Enjoy the following on metanoia (repentance) by Scott Cairns.


Repentance, to be sure,

but of a species far

less likely to oblige

sheepish repetition.

Repentance, you’ll observe,

glibly bears the bent

of thought revisited,

and mind’s familiar stamp

—a quaint, half-hearted

doubleness that couples

all compunction with a pledge

of recurrent screw-up

The heart’s metanoia,

on the other hand, turns

without regret, turns not

so much away, as toward,

as if the slow pilgrim

has been surprised to find

that sin is not so bad

as it is a waste of time.

“Adventures in New Testament Greek: Metanoia” from Compass of Affection: Poems New and Selected

© 2006 Scott Cairns .Used by permission of Paraclete Press,

Previous posts of mine on repentance


You know me

August 2, 2011 Leave a comment

Reflecting on 2 Samuel 7:18-29 this morning.  I was captured by the focus on God–David is saying it is all about God–your people, your name, your greatness, your blessing.  But, in the middle of the passage, I found myself zooming in on a comment David makes in verse 20.  “And what more can David say to you?  For you know your servant, O Lord GOD! Because of your promise and according to your own heart, you have brought about all this greatness to make your servant know it.”

Anyway, these words came to me this morning–grounded in this passage and likely influenced by my re-reading of Eldrige’s book, Waking the Dead.

You know me (2 Sam 7:20; Psalm 139)
You do not reject me
You do not shame me

  • I am not abandoned
  • Neglected
  • Nor left alone

You do not weigh me down with guilt

  • I am guilty
  • I have broken your law
  • I have violated your covenant
  • I have wandered
  • I have crossed the line
  • I have stretched the truth
  • I have been dishonest
  • I have hidden in fear
  • I have been angry and held hatred in my heart

You know my heart
According to your heart, You have made me great (2 Sam 7:21)
You have awakened me

  • And I see
  • And I long for you
  • You satisfy me like no other
  • I am content when I am with you
  • I can rest in peace
  • And be quiet
  • And stop struggling

Thank you Lord

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Sunday morning prayer

April 3, 2011 Leave a comment

Vox Climantis by Salvador Dali Die heilige Bibel

A meditation on Psalm 143

If I am your servant
How is it that
My heart is not engaged
My soul is not desperate
My life is not threatened
And yet my spirit grows weak?
What do I do?

Remember your character

  • Your love
  • Mercy
  • Faithfulness
  • Righteousness
  • Goodness

Meditate upon your works
And fear your judgment

Is it all about your glory?
All about you?
In my head
But in my heart?

Make me to know
Let me hear
Hide not your face
Deliver me
Lead me
Teach me
Preserve my life
Destroy my enemies

For the sake of your name
Here is where it
Must begin
And end
I am your servant

Can I accept that I am a work in progress?

March 23, 2011 1 comment

NOTE: Following is an update on a previous post.

Instead of being impatient with your progress, perhaps it is better to be grateful that you are still moving forward.  From Teillhard de Chardin:

Above all, trust in the slow work of God. We are, quite naturally,

Impatient in everything to reach the end without delay…

We should like to skip the intermediate stages.

We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown,

something new. And yet, i is the law of all progress

that it is made by passing through some stages of instability…

and that it may take a very long time


And so I think it is with you.

Your ideas mature gradually;

Let them grow, let them shape themselves,

without undue haste. Don’t try to force them on,

as though you could be today what time

(that is to say, grace and circumstances acting on your own goodwill)

will make you tomorrow.


Only God could say what this new spirit gradually forming

within you will be. Give our Lord the benefit of your

believing that his hand is leading you, and of your

accepting the anxiety of feeling yourself in suspense and


Opportunities for grace

December 25, 2010 Leave a comment

Sometimes, my losses pile up
To such an extent that I think
I can never face them.
But you challenge me to embrace the pain,
Allow the painful thrusts of evil
And my own sinful choices
To be seen for what they really are:
Opportunities for grace.

Reflections that flowed out of a meditation in Isaiah 9 a few years ago.

The people who walk in darkness will see a great light–a light that will shine on all who live in the land where death casts its shadow. For God will break the chains that bind His people and the whip that scourges them . . .
His ever expanding peaceful government will never end. He will rule forever with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David. The passionate commitment of the LORD Almighty will guarantee this.

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God’s love

October 10, 2010 Leave a comment

Melting by Therese of Lisieux

Your Love shines like the summer sun

To melt ice-clad humanity;
This furnace of the Triune One
Burns with a perfect constancy.

Your Love yields love with healing rays
In souls that bask under the shine;
With humble gratitude and praise,
They pulse love back to the Divine.

Love yields new life, with strengthened hope,
To serve with patient, grateful love.
She finds new strength to heal and cope;
Despite her state, she looks above.

The icy rains soon melt away;
Warmed from within, her strength will stay.

May the Love of God strengthen and instill new life in us.

Call to humility and to gratefulness

May 22, 2010 1 comment

The Pilgrim’s Regress

C.S. Lewis 1933

Nearly they stood who fall.
Themselves, when they look back
see always in the track
One torturing spot where all
By a possible quick swerve
Of will yet unenslaved–
By the infinitesimal twitching of a nerve–
Might have been saved.

Nearly they fell who stand.
These with cold after-fear
Look back and note how near
They grazed the Siren’s land
Wondering to think that fate
By threads so spidery-fine
The choice of ways so small, the event so great
Should thus entwine.

Therefore I sometimes fear
Lest oldest fears prove true
Lest, when no bugle blew
My mort, when skies looked clear
I may have stepped one hair’s
Breadth past the hair-breadth bourn
Which, being once crossed forever unawares
Forbids return.

C.S. Lewis, Poems; Nearly They Stood (1933)