Sunday, March 18, 2018

Poetry for Lent V: Malcolm Guite

Photo credit: "Off the Grid Theology"


2. All the Kingdoms of the World

'So here's the deal and this is what you get:
The pent-house suite with world-commanding views,
The banker's bonus and the private jet,
Control and ownership of all the news,
And "in" to that exclusive one per cent,
Who know the score, who really run the show,
With interest on every penny lent
And sweeteners for cronies in the know.
A straight arrangement between me and you,
No hell below or heaven high above,
You just admit it, and give me my due,
And wake up from this foolish dream of love...'
But Jesus laughed, 'You are not what you seem.
Love is the waking life, you are the dream.'

-- Malcolm Guite, Sounding the Seasons

You can hear the poet read this aloud by clicking HERE.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Poetry for Lent IV: Malcolm Guite

Photo: Sunday


1. Stones to Bread

The Fountain thirsts, the Bread is hungry here,
The Light is dark, the Word without a voice.
When darkness speaks it seems so light and clear.
Now he must dare, with us, to make a choice.
In a distended belly's cruel curve
He feels the famine of the ones who lose,
He starves for those whom we have forced to starve,
He chooses now for those who cannot choose.
He is the staff and sustenance of life,
He lives for all from one sustaining Word,
His love still breaks and pierces like a knife
The stony ground of hearts that never shared,
God gives through him what Satan never could;
The broken bread that is our only food.

-- Malcolm Guite, Sounding the Seasons

You can listen to the poet reading this aloud HERE.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Get Thee to the Church on Time!

Just a reminder that Daylight Savings Time begins this weekend.  Set your clocks before bed Saturday so you'll be on time for worship on Sunday...and for the Lenten lunch that follows the service!

Friday, March 2, 2018

Poetry for Lent III: Malcolm Guite

Jesus Cleansing the Temple
El Greco - 1568
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Cleansing the Temple

Come to your Temple here with liberation
And overturn these tables of exchange,
Restore in me my lost imagination,
Begin in me for good the pure change.
Come as you came, an infant with your mother,
That innocence may cleanse and claim this ground.
Come as you came, a boy who sought his father,
With questions asked and certain answers found.
Come as you came, this day, a man in anger,
Unleash the lash that drives a pathway through,
Face down for me the fear, the shame, the danger,
Teach me again to whom my love is due.
Break down in me the barricades of death
And tear the veil in two with your last breath.

-- Malcolm Guite, Sounding the Seasons

Hear Mr. Guite reading this poem aloud HERE.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Reflecting on a Life II

Whose life?
Each one of ours...

Reflecting on a Life

The Rev. Billy Graham has died.  

This clip from MSNBC's "Morning Joe" describes his mission, his life's work, in its context as "America's Pastor", in the words of Jon Meacham, who is an American historian.

A man who, just as he was, followed what he believed to be the call on his life.

 A life thus lived...something to ponder in this Lenten the words we sang on Sunday from the Common Praise Hymn Book...

Just as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bid'st me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come!  I come!

Just as I am, and waiting not
To rid my soul of one dark blot;
To Thee whose blood can cleans each spot,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am though tossed about 
With many a conflict, many a doubt;
Fightings and fears, within, without,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind;
Sight, riches, healing of the mind;
Yes, all I need, in Thee to find,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Just as I am, Thy love unknown
Has broken every barrier down;
Now to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

Rest in Peace, Rev. Graham.
 Nov. 7, 1918 - Feb. 21, 2018

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Poetry for Lent 1 - Malcolm Guite

Based on today's Gospel: Mark 1: 9 - 15

Daniel Bonnell, The Baptism of the Christ

The Baptism of Christ

Beginning here we glimpse the Three-in-one;
The river runs, the clouds are torn apart,
The Father speaks, the Spirit and the Son
Reveal to us the single loving heart
That beats behind the being of all things
And calls and keeps and kindles us to light.
The dove descends, the spirit soars and sings,
'You are beloved, you are my delight!'
In that swift light and life, as water spills
And streams around the Man like quickening rain,
The voice that made the universe reveals
The God in Man who makes it new again.
He calls us too, to step into that river,
To die and rise and live and love forever.

-- Malcolm Guite, Sounding the Seasons

Listen to this poem translated into song by Canadian singer-song-writer, Steve Bell ...HERE.