Fingerprints of faith

fingerprint against the sky
Faith has the ability
to hold on to hope in a world like this.
Faith resides in the whole self
and grows in community.
Faith is often shaped more by story than by fact:
story moves.
Faith gives new eyes, new ears, a new heart,
to see the culture of love emerging.

I need this kind of faith.

[photo by Josean Prado per cc 2.0]

It is there

deep in the woodsIt is there

Deep, deep within the forest
Deep, deep inside my soul,
Deep within the smiles and words of friendship
Deep in certain books or poems
It is there.

Some call it life force, or beauty.
Some call it prahna or pneuma or ruach.
Whatever it is, I find it undeniable.
It is, for me, the deepest reality, and best hope.
I think I’ll call it love.

[photo is my own]

the exchange

mother and child
There is an image,
An exchange I witnessed,
That has been percolating
In my memory for years.

You’ve probably seen it, too:
A young mother
With her infant bouncing on her lap.
They are enthralled with one another.

What flows between them,
Almost visible as their eyes connect,
Palpable in the air between them,
Is the exchange of life-giving love.

The infant is held by something
So much stronger than her hands.
The mother is upheld
With something just as strong.

Their gifts to one another
Are so tangible
So vital
So real.

Yet each is filled,
Not emptied.
Full of a love that will not be contained.
A rush of life between them.

This is love incarnate.
Love enfleshed; love fulfilled.
This is how life is passed on.
Birth is just the beginning.

Perhaps this shows me why
The Christ came to us.
To look us in the eye
And give us life.

God breathed upon the clay.
Christ looked on us with love.
The Spirit, now within us,
Empowers life’s eternal flow.

It is like breath:
Receiving in; giving out.
Each delightful exchange
Brings life anew.

[image cropped from photo by Robert Moores per cc 2.0]

deep

moon on water

Deep calls to deep, they say.
I believe it.
It skips my head and grabs my heart.
The universe moves
And something shifts within me

I feel the quantum change
Small and vast at the same time.
There is a truth spinning at the center
Humming in my soul
Vibrating across the strings of my heart

You can’t pin it down.
Observation, itself, makes it shift.
Only one aspect at a time can come into view.
It is simply too big, too vast,
Too deep.

Logic looses its grip.
It cannot hold.
But where logic pushes away,
Love draws close.
The heart of it all calls to my heart.

I know that it is true,
Not because I’ve figured it out,
Not because I’ve grasped it,
But because it holds me
And I feel its embrace.

Deeply.

[photo by NJ per cc 2.0]

wind of change

scarf blowing in the wind

There is a change coming
On the wings of the wind.
It blows where it will, they say.
And it wills to blow change.

It wills (yes, it does)
To blow love into the hearts of the earth.
It wills (I am sure)
To help us cuddle closer to each other,
Or to cool our anger
Or soothe our frantic, fevered mind.

It blows in gales
Or moves in quiet whispers,
Whatever will best bring the change it seeks.
It blows across my heart and yours.

Its ancient name was ruach or pneuma.
It is the breath of God.
And it is still bringing life to this clay.
It is still calling us to truer life.

We cannot control it
Or even understand it.
It does not follow any particular set of rules.
And so, the life it brings is far beyond
Even my dearest hopes and dreams.

And, if I can release myself into its flow,
My breath becomes its faint but eager echo.
Its wings are mine.
It lifts me – it lifts us –
To the very heart of God, herself.

[photo by Victoria Nevland per cc 2.0]

an imagined choice

candle lightI woke this morning with the vestiges of a troubled dream still roiling my soul. It remained, not so much in my memory as in my emotions. It was unsettling, and threatened to take me to a dark place. Suddenly, I could understand the idea of omens and evil spirits. I could feel the power of the imagination.

Nothing about the physical world around me was different. The sheets, tousled upon my bed, the blanket tossed aside, the taste of my morning coffee, were all as they had been yesterday and the day before. But my heart was troubled.

And now I faced a choice. I could let the dream take my imagination, or I could let my imagination take the dream. That idea … that different tone … started as a small point of light in the center of my soul.

Like a candle in the night, it flickered there, faltering, fragile in the darkness. But I cupped my hands around it and focused my attention there. Small as it was, it warmed my hands. That warmth traveled up my arms and found my heart. It began to expand within me until I found that I could breath again.

I took a deep, full breath and shook my head, and shook my soul. It broke the spell of foreboding. I listened to the chimes outside my window and the quiet breathing of my husband, there beside me. A sense of gratitude began to rise within me, just as the night began to fade to day.

Not all evil is imaginary, but sometimes imaginary evil can threaten to steal your soul. And sometimes even the evil that is real grows stronger through imagination. Even then, sometimes, you can choose to see the light, and welcome it with gratitude.

You cannot really hold the light. But sometimes you can choose to let it hold you.

May you find the light, today.
May it hold you in its warmth.
May you learn to choose hope, when you can.
And find room to be grateful,
Even now.

 

[this image was placed in the public domain by Noubi noubi]