Thursday, July 17, 2014

Christ Has No Body

Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,
Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,
Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.
Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are his body.
Christ has no body now but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
compassion on this world.
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.

Teresa of Avila

Friday, April 11, 2014

Purification

At the start of spring I open a trench
in the ground. I put into it
the winter’s accumulation of paper,
pages I do not want to read
again, useless words, fragments,
errors. And I put into it
the contents of the outhouse:
light of the sun, growth of the ground,
finished with one of their journeys.
To the sky, to the wind, then,
and to the faithful trees, I confess
my sins: that I have not been happy
enough, considering my good luck;
have listened to too much noise;
have been inattentive to wonders;
have lusted after praise.
And then upon the gathered refuse
of mind and body, I close the trench,
folding shut again the dark,
the deathless earth. Beneath that seal
the old escapes into the new.

-Wendell Berry

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

In the Silent Night

Lo, in the silent night
A child to God is born
And all is brought again
That ere was lost or lorn.

Could but thy soul, O man
Become a silent night!
God would be born in thee
And set all things aright.

-15th Century Verse

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Waken in Me a Sense of Joy

A prayer and blessing for my daughter who turned 15 this week:

O extravagant God,
in this ripening, red-tinged autumn,
waken in me a sense of joy,
in just being alive,
joy for nothing in general
except everything in particular;
joy in sun and rain
mating with earth to birth a harvest;
joy in soft light
through shyly disrobing trees;
joy in the acolyte moon
setting halos around possessing clouds;
joy in the beating of a thousand wings
mysteriously knowing which way is warm;
joy in wagging tails and kids' smiles
and in this spunky old city;
joy in the taste of bread and wine,
the smell of dawn,
a touch,
a song,
a presence;
joy in having what I cannot live without--
other people to hold and cry and laugh with;
joy in love,
in you;
and in all that first and last
is grace.

~from Guerrillas of Grace by Ted Loder

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Your Neighbor

The hardest spiritual work in the world is to love the neighbor as the self–to encounter another human being not as someone you can use, change, fix, help, save, enroll, convince or control, but simply as someone who can spring you from the prison of yourself, if you will allow it.

Barbara Brown Taylor

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Original Plan

The gospel is not that there is still more to come in the future. It’s not about going to heaven when we die, or about being forgiven now and awaiting freedom later. It’s not about experiencing the sacred in the midst of the secular. Neither is it a new teaching or a new moral code. It is the promised ‘power of God for salvation’ (Romans 1:16)–a power that frees us from all that opposed God and God’s will and all that alienates us from ourselves and each other. This power frees us to live according to God’s original plan, where selfless sharing, justice, mutuality, respect, trust, forgiveness and joyful community become realized.

Charles Moore

Friday, January 04, 2013

When the Work of Christmas Really Begins


When the song of the angels is stilled,
When the star in the sky is gone,
When the kings and princes are home,
When the shepherds are back with their flocks,

The work of Christmas begins:

To find the lost,
To heal the broken,
To feed the hungry,
To release the prisoner,
To rebuild the nations,
To bring peace among people,
To make music in the heart.

Howard Thurman