Ash Wednesday

apple bite“Just one small bite,” the serpent says,
“And you will be like God.”
“It is not death, but knowledge you will find.
And knowledge is power, you know.
You will know good and evil – you will be like God.”

That silly bite. Why didn’t I just listen to the words
And not to the seduction? I already knew good . . .

But, Ah! To be like God!
I should have read the fine print.
To be like God, but without the power.
To be like God, but without the wisdom.
How, then, like God?
All I really did was put myself in charge.
Not a very wise choice, given the job description.

So what can I do now?
Only one thing . . . abdicate.
Let God be God and me be me.
The ashes I will wear today.
Are ashes from an apple.

[cropped photo by Patrick McFall per cc 2.0]

The Dragon of Too Much

dragonThe push and pull of the day are already upon me. Lists are forming in my head. Shoulds and oughtas scream at me from corners in my mind where they dropped, exhausted, at the end of the day yesterday. I rouse myself and steel my resolve to go forward, but there is sorrow and despair in my step.

Where is the joy of encountering life? Where is the abundance? That is what you promised, isn’t it – not overwhelming life, but abundant life. A small tear trickles down the corner of my cheek, burning my eyes and the inside of my nose, carrying its silent resignation to spiritless despair. Continue reading

The Great God of Should

 idolI can hardly sit still. My spirit is jittery, anxious, chattering away with irrelevant noise. I am afraid of not being able to do what I have committed myself to do: too much work, too many projects, too much responsibility, too many obligations.

I shudder before the altar to Should. Great God Should, my master, my hard taskmaster. High and lofty Should – you are an altar made of my own fashioning, covered with my dreams, like sheets of pounded gold – strong, overbearing, threatening my doom. My own hands have made you, but I cannot find a way to take you down. Continue reading