“I AM has sent me to you.” – Exodus 3:14

God of Now and
God of Then and
God of Will Be,
who endlessly appears in the corners of our eyes,
burning,
in a bush, in a smile, in a picture and
in the alighting of a falcon in a tree;
we imagine your name in our imaginings
and find our thoughts far too narrow and small 
for pure being to settle into us in these dizzy days;
send us into the realm of corners where we dare 
to believe nothing is true and sacred and,
burning,
we may be seen rising in our finest moment of freedom.
Amen.

“But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will fasten a belt around you and take you where you do not wish to go.” – John 21:18

God who draws us out of the waters
and leads us across the land,
the shape of our lives blurs
as meanings grow dim
and the birds no longer sing
in the light of the mornings.
We cry, This is not of our own doing,
and we pray, Lead us not into temptation,
but we hold out our hands anyway
to be bound by that which is greater
than us...but not you.
Free us once again.
Amen.

Your Choice

Sensing the poignancy of the moment
I speak into it, "There is a tension 
between exerting control and letting go."

She looks up from the book she always 
reads and says, "Perhaps it is time to tend
to the craft of making faithfulness."

Not wanting to be undone, I say,
"The challenge is to see the text for now,
avoid cliché, and live in the moment."

"Nice," she laughs.  "Heaven 
can be on earth if we dare 
to make new connections."

I pause.  Intrigued. Thinking aloud,
"Radical intricacies come and unfold
in this time and in this space."

She turns back to the book she always
reads, "Your choice: performance
or completion."

Unburden Her

Unburden Her…spoken
     to Karen

"And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years." Luke 13:11

We
We are
We are over
We are over with...

Seeing the woman bent over.
Knowing her being bent over impacts every part of her life.
Wondering if the woman in the story is done being bent over.
Knowing the woman in the story is done.

And...the woman shows up.

She is not sick.
She is burdened.
Bent over from burdens.
Eighteen years burdened.
Just as we are burdened 
with indifference
and apathy.
(How many dead as of today?  360k?  And counting...)

Eighteen years.
Eighteen years crippled.
Eighteen years bowed down.
    (Burdens are heavy.)

(We don't know how old she is.)
Eighteen years of her best years?
Eighteen years from birth?
Eighteen years after all her children are gone?

Eighteen years of hoping to return to normal.
Eighteen years the woman is coming.
Eighteen years to move from the margins to the center.
Eighteen years of bearing the crippling spirit.
Eighteen years of days wondering, Is this my done day.
No, but still eighteen years looking for what will make it right.

Eighteen years of leaders getting the rules right.
Eighteen years of every people getting the rules right.
Eighteen years of her closest relations getting the rules right.
Eighteen years of God making the rules right.

Eighteen years of everyone getting the relationship wrong.

Eighteen years of suffering through her freedom.
Eighteen years of suffering from our thraldom.

Until.
She appears.
Burdened.

Center.
Center this woman.
Center this spirit-crippled woman.
Center this burdened woman.

Unburden.
Unburden her.
Unburden your self.