There is a time in everyone’s life when God breaks in, when all the artifices of man crumble like so much dust. Culture, race, language, identity, and time itself melts alway before the eternal, incorruptible, all-encompassing presence of God Himself. His timelessness steps into our time. The eternal Word takes on flesh to speak in a human tongue eternal truth. Grace and mercy descends to rescue a cruel and corrupt world. Love looks into our eyes with everlasting tenderness.
Awakened to an eerie self-examination of the soul
on the steel-cold surface under surgically precise lights
unentombing cancers, contagion-carrying arteries, dismembered
corruption to the dispassionate gaze of an Enemy brooding,
Still sweating under the administered fumes seeping
through pores, guilt-driven language of parents driven
from home to carnage of children preying on children, warfare
of wretched depravity in the eyes of a man, a woman seething,
Cannot speak, cannot hear, cannot see, cannot feel anything
but the weight of irreversible fate, the darts of the Enemy
injections of delirious oblivion only to awaken to endless night
where no refuge lies from grief and fear and the hate pursuing,
Helpless, my tongue dry, the light dims, darkness closes in,
but a voice is heard, a minister to prophesy over the bitter
collocation of bones, unholy, “O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD!”-
prophesy!- in the body and the blood a Life that is not mine breathes,
If in all the world I could trust just you
To forever keep a promise or two
I’d give my soul to you, my dear,
With many a kiss and nary a fear
Believing your promises were safe and true
And I had nothing to fear from you.
The lamb has yet to lay down with the lion
There is no peace in any day and age
Look beyond your walls! Can you not see
Enemies at the gates, barbarians rising
To receive as their bounty your life,
Your fortune, your freedom denied?
So cries one, and still another rages,
Voices of confusion and calamity.
Where will you go, with whom will you struggle
To find the security you seek within your walls
Where disease and misfortune and betrayal
Lurk at corners beyond your control?
Life in all its disarray where even within your soul
The enemy lurks to cause you to despair when hope
Seems all but lost, meaning all but gone, love
All but illusion – Where then to find the truth
That sets free? Who the author and the champion?
Who the founder and the deliverer – but God?
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
Things can fall apart so fast
Entropy is the law of the land
But when you come and pick me up
I know I can rebuild.
Bits of life flake away
As I go through each day
Little deaths along the way
But with you, I can rebuild.
Eternal God, you never leave
Though willfully I’ve torn apart
The life that you have given me
In Christ you help me to rebuild.
Now with thankful hope I pray
And think upon that glorious day
When in heaven I’ll rejoice and say
O God, you helped me to rebuild.
In Dostoevsky’s Notes from the Underground, we are told rightly that “if [man] is not stupid, he is monstrously ungrateful! Phenomenally ungrateful. In fact, I believe that the best definition of man is the ungrateful biped.”
(A retelling of the story of Abraham and Isaac)