Walking in the radiant light of this morning’s rising sun. Sensing the intangible yet intimate presence of that gentle breeze engaging and inspiring my very soul. Hearing the refreshing sound of rushing waters; clean and life-giving: flowing with hope and joy and peace. Appreciating the journey; the ups and downs, highs and lows and paths not walked before. Anticipating that final bend, the familiar door and a glorious welcome home. (c) 2020 Graham Oakes
Oh Lord! Forgive us for the way we turn your living presence into works of stone, of unchanging forms which exist for themselves; within which you cannot breathe. Forgive us, for celebrating your coming as a birthday, for one day only, then putting it back into the drawer for seasons and special occasions. Forgive us, that the fruit you challenge us with is observed as a ‘still life’ study; to be marvelled at for its composition and setting without moving us to desire its treasure when revealed in us. Forgive us, that the gifts you share are denied, devalued or desired for the wrong reasons. Forgive us, that we underestimate their power and your glory. Forgive us: for arguing over their use and limitations. Forgive us: that, in the midst of diversity, we ignore your translating, transforming, and unifying power. Lord, in your mercy, forgive us: Oh, Lord! Redeem, restore, revive and renew; breathe on me, I pray. Indwell my tradition with daily renewal, my human perspective with your heavenly vision; refresh my stagnant backwater with the rushing waters of your love; replace my ambition with your perfect calling. Fill me, to overflowing; capture me and set me free to serve you, here, now and forever. By your amazing grace, Amen.
To have and to lose: this is our human condition. Through struggle, or gift, we gain that which, through struggle or gift, is taken away. Transient experiences of life elude our attempts to retain them. We learn that our humanity is finite; our lives but a vapour; our loves and hates live on in others, if they live at all. The small steps we take are as nothing. The earth revolves around the sun and its cycles diminish, even more, our grasp on time and space. But you ... in your birth you bore the hope of nations. In your life dwelt all the Godhead, bodily. In your sacrifice is forgiveness for all who call. In your resurrection death, and all its power, is defeated. And then, at your Ascension, the Gift was promised ... Incarnate Presence, restored with a more glorious Indwelling. Your heavenly humanity is all gain and, by your Spirit, you fill us with the light of your Day ... ... turning our shadows into everlasting Dawn.
As part of the RS Thomas Poetry Appreciation Group we have been asked to write a poem in response to one of his … this is my first attempt which I posted to the group today … you can find his poem on the Intranet … it’s a beautiful read.
There is a wakefulness that is not bound by the margins of sleep; an awareness that is constant and alive. Alive to all there is in the infinity and eternity of being. We could not bear it. Only One who has borne our weakness and broken our chains hears and listens, watches and sees, across the ocean that separates and calls us home.