Monday, October 19, 2009

Bread

Jesus is the Bread of Life-
His body the bread; His blood, the wine.

Am I eating bread at this moment in my faith?
Or do I settle for a kernel of wheat here & there?
Am I content to consume dry flour?
Am I chewing on raw dough, hoping for sustenance?

...Is the oven even on?

Am I drinking wine at this moment in my faith?
Or am I gnawing on a grape from the vineyard?
Am I content to consume a glass of grape juice?
Am I imbibing cheap, boxed wine, hoping to slake my thirst?

Jesus is the Bread of Life-
His body the bread; His blood, the wine.
But bread is not instantly bread... its made up of many different ingredients, brought together & baked, over time, in the fire.

So too, wine is not instantly wine... It begins as a seed, a vine, a grape, & continues through a fermentation process. Fermentation takes place over time, in the darkness.

The making of bread & wine takes time.

Am I eating bread?
Am I drinking wine?
Is Christ's Life being formed in me
or am I merely sampling the ingredients?

Friday, October 16, 2009

Its Got Wheels...

God seems to speak to me through insignificant things... I think...

I work in a warehouse where part of my day is spent filling orders. The other day, I was out in the racks with my cart loaded, moving along at a steady pace. I rounded the corner & saw a garbage bin in the middle of the aisle, down a ways from where I was. I 'heard' the words, thought them, whatever- "That obstacle is right where you need to be". And of course, the next location the computer sent me to was directly behind the garbage bin. I moved it, got the product & moved on. Simple.

If I hadn't moved it, I'd be stuck. See, even if I "skipped the slot", backtracked & went another way to get around it, I would still have to complete the order. I would be sent back to that same location in the end, which means even more backtracking, as well as lost time & energy. The bin had to be moved. It had wheels. All it needed was a push.

It'd be pretty dumb to throw up my hands & backtrack. Yet that's what I seem to do most times when I encounter an obstacle in my "spiritual walk"... and eventually, I end up at the same place, wasting time & maybe becoming an obstacle myself.

There's a "garbage bin" of discouragement sitting right where I need to be. Apparently, it has wheels also... & all it needs is a push.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Confession

People are like fences... Some are rotted, soiled... loose. Some are pristine & rooted firmly. Some are attached to gates that open for me... and some gates never open. But all along my path, there they are- connected to each other.

Sometimes I enjoy hearing the clickity clack of a stick as I drag it along a fence... I can feel the rhythm moving up my hand, resonating through me. When I stop, it stops. Once, I looked back in the moonlight & saw a line scratched in the surface, following me all the way. I dropped the stick, put my hands in my pockets & moved along, nonchalant. No one would know...

This is my path. I'm the only one who walks it... the fence line hems me in, keeps me out, until I find a gate. Some gates open for me... Some gates never open.

________________________________________________________
1 John 2:9-10a

Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness. Whoever loves his brother lives in the light...

1 John 4:20-21

If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Readthru: Still Going...

41 days to go. 166 chapters left. 71 in the OT, 95 in the NT. At roughly 4 chapters a day, I'll have successfully made my goal of reading the Bible in 6 months. I'm already looking forward to getting back to the stories of Genesis- perhaps because they're full of hope- of a new creation, of freedom from slavery, of a new land, a new nation... I've been reading the prophetic books semi-consecutively & have had my fill of want & woe. Thankfully, the NT offers a much needed reprieve.

As I near the end, I find myself losing focus- pushing just a bit harder to finish. Its been a struggle to hang back & take in what I'm reading, to apply it. It seems at times, the temporal goal becomes my master... Oddly, the more I read, the less I seem to know... the more wise I seek to become, the more foolish I feel. The more I desire to be strong, the weaker I appear... And yet, I seem to be growing a little stronger in spite of my weakness, a tad wiser in the wake of foolishness, even a bit more hungry in spite of my abundance...

Monday, October 5, 2009

possession

i am a ghost, caught in the rift between living & dying.
i wander about in the same places,
reliving the same patterns
over & over.
o to be free!

perhaps, if for only a moment, i can do & move & be through another...
can i change the cycle?
redeem the time?
instead of despair & destruction, i just might find hope & restoration.

if i can possess an idea or thing,
it cannot change the past...
neither can i find a present hope in the soul of one dearly loved.
i suspect that even if i were to possess the christ himself
as my very own,
he would inevitably fail to retain his
"christness".
it would still be me,
moving & doing & being...
caught in the rift between living & dying...
wandering about in the same places,
reliving the same patterns
over & over.
o to be free!

am i thusly doomed to wander this earth,
all but shattered inside?
there's a sound- faint... can you hear it?
no, those aren't my chains...
those are the sharp, petrified bits of me
crashing together...

would that christ might instead possess me-
not me in him, but him in me...
would that he fill me like a balm & come to dwell,
not only for a moment,
but forever onward...
to move & do & be...
that i would be possessed as such,
so as to fade away-
the soul of me,
identity...
finally set free...