God, save me from the lie
of an acceptable death,
the heroic sacrifice (too many spent),
a crazed god’s scheme
to sell forgiveness for blood.
Save me from the anticipated gesture,
the deal agreed upon.
Deliver me instead into truth’s sordid lap,
the bewildering perversion
that comes of fear, and death its only issue,
violence its only hands and feet;
the way we judge, the way we think we can.
Let me not blame this on you.
No: only in the jumpy torchlight
of the unnecessary flames
of another lynching, another rape,
a war, an execution,
the tragedy of power,
only here in honest horror
do we see your awful love in all its range,
your inexplicable grace unbending,
mercy nailed and crowned with thorns.
Only here in our deepest depravity,
not planned, not paid for, but accepted,
can I know love strong enough
to save me and all this trembling world
not from that but this,
not from the fear of hell
but from the hell itself of fear.
Only in my deepest loss, and yours,
do I see love win
and raise me up to something new
and really alive.
walking by faith
we rely on things to come
we hope in what is not seen
we stand on invisible ground
fly without evidence of our wings
we fight battle with foes from another dimension
we teach without seeing the whole vision
we trust what we cannot see with our eyes
we walk on
we are going the right way
directed by the silence
in bright, beautiful pathways of grace
and dark, eerie forests of fog
somedays we are surrounded by fellow pilgrims, or foes, or strange bed-fellows,
other days we seem to walk alone
we walk on
or we sit and wait
relying on radical trust
we learn the virtues by living
because we have truly learned
what we could never learn
by our own understanding
faith is the victory
everything is grace