altar’d state

I couldn’t help but title this one ‘altar’d state’ even though it’s the name of a store. 

 

I begged God to send me tools to

Build an altar of remembrance.

Desperate for a place to rest

When my mind often forgets.

he answered me through hallowed ground;

the holy earth opened wide and swallowed

I fell in

I fell into him

into the deep black swirls of mysteries that man hasn’t solved yet.

“What hell is this?”

In a still small voice,

He answered, “build it”

So I took what I had in the pit,

myself,

yielded.

I built from the mud of my suffering,

As I was building,

He was with me

In the soft wet earth under my fingernails

And the grime on my skin

sprinkled gold with his light from heaven

As the altar grew taller

The earth sunk deeper and deeper into herself

Like we all do under suffering.

And I got angry at God

Shaking my fists,

“I asked you to remind me of heaven

Not of this forsakenness”

And his still small voice said,

“This is it.

The upside-down kingdom.”

My suffering was my altar,

Bringing me close to Jesus

Because in an upside-down kingdom,

When suffering takes us under,

And fights to bury us in the earth

We grow closer to heaven.

autumn dancing

The past few weeks my soul slowly stopped dancing, and I’ve been waiting to hear the beginning melody of another song.

FullSizeRender

I’ve been thinking about joy lately and about the moments I feel it most deeply. C.S. Lewis said he was “surprised by joy,” and I have to agree with Ann Voskamp, when she says perhaps that’s the only way to discover it. The life in the trees. The change of autumn in your lungs.

The moment your soul hears the trickle of the soft melody begin to play.