That face…

silhouette of person s hand touching water during sunset

Photo by Emre Kuzu

His face sparkled like a multi-faceted diamond. A face that blazed like the sun yet different. A pure white light with flashes of blue, silver, and gold. It hurt my eyes so badly to look at Him but I could not, would not turn my face away. I did not care if I went blind. This face is the One I’d been waiting to see all of my life. His face was all I could look at as if in a trance; like when starting a fire in the Old World. Mesmerizing doesn’t begin to describe it. The blaze was so bright that I could not see anything of His other features at all.

On either side of Him stood two beings, they were a coll alabaster white, not bright white, not shining in any way but pure and cool looking. They each stood facing Him never moving their face from His. They did not speak. They were powerful creatures, I could tell, they were strong and sure of their purpose. They were creatures with a human face that I could recognize and at least seven feet tall and had wings that were about six feet tall and four feet in width. Each feather gently folded into the next. Once for just a second I saw their feathers slightly ruffle from top to bottom and could see these were strong wings. Wings that never faltered  when they flew or fought in a battle or stood at attention. I was afraid.

I was so afraid that my legs could no longer hold me. I was eager to kneel down. It felt good to kneel before Him because in the Old World with decaying knee joints I could no longer kneel in His presence. All the while my eyes were burning severely from His brightness. I felt strong in the kneeling as if I, like the two creatures, am created for this very thing.

Then the most incredible thing happened…He knelt down on His knees too and when He did it was the face I knew it would be. His face. The face of softness and kindness. The face of antiquity yet new and fresh. His eyes were not like our eyes. His eyes were not blue, brown, green, or hazel or gray or any of those colors…they were simply Light.

He took his hand and palmed my cheek and spoke to me. The words he spoke I will not share with anyone ever. They were words just between us. Words I had thirsted for since I was formed in my Mother’s womb by my Father’s sinful Adam’s seed. They were words beyond redeeming love, words of My Story with Him, of understanding with healing and further instruction of what is to come. They were words I had never heard spoken before, another language if you will. They were Peace and oh what joy did flood my soul.

At that moment the same blazing light that came from Him entered into me and my eyes no longer burned at all. My sight was inconceivably and brilliantly clear. I belonged there with Him…every “longing” I had ever known in my Eternal Life and even before in the Dead Life stood right there in front of me. Each one of them actually existed before my eyes and each one was finally satiated beyond measure. He smiled at me and pulled me up from my knees and that is when I felt the scars in His hands. Those beautiful wounded hands took mine and we walked among my life, my dreams. As He held my hand in His I knew I would never have to be separated from Him again.

He said, “let’s walk along the place you loved the most in the Old World.”

Gently without fanfare or fear I heard that beautiful love song of waves washing upon the shore. The smell of salt water and life teemed all around me. There was no stench of dead sea life or decay of any kind just the scent of cleanness. The colors of the water was too wonderful for words. Again, I want to keep this precious moment private…this was our beach, just His and mine. We stayed there and looked for shell and other jewels that were of a beauty and colors I have never seen. We waded into the water and even though it was Ocean water we could drink it and it tasted sweet beyond honey. We picked some living anemone flowers and held them and then put them back unscathed into the water. They swam around His feet as if to love on Him. Oh it is a glorious place We sat down in the sand as white and soft as a cloud and we held hands and rested…

 

 

Unencumbered by manipulation…

grayscale photo of the crucifix

Photo by Alem Sánchez

As I prepare my heart during Lent season heading toward the Holy day of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ I keep coming back to the thought of The One in whom I put my trust.

All of us “trust” something or someone, as as a result, we worship the very thing we are trusting.

Dr. Hud McWilliams says, “for a relationship to be authentic, one must realize that a choice has to be unencumbered by manipulation.” (no fear, no rules, and no behavior that merits you favor). “

Looking back on my youth I have come to realize many of my relationships had an element of manipulation or my own agenda in them but now I see that Jesus never manipulated people to engage with or follow him.

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Hebrews 12:2

God gives us the ability to openly choose Him through Jesus Christ.  No manipulation, no winning a lotto, no position of prosperity or health. So, I remain humbly astounded that my relationship with God can be truly free and without manipulation…

and then I can breathe…

 

air atmosphere blue blue sky

Photo by Skitterphoto

I suddenly wake and can’t see anything

I start throwing my fear around…

I  open the window

I look for the sun for any signs of the spring

and then I can breathe again

I can feel each Holy  breath…

 

I hear my babies laughing

I smell roses drifting on the breeze

Deep inside a sweet voice whispers

what have you to fear?

and then I can breathe

I can feel each Holy breath…

 

At night I gaze up into the heavens

I hear someone call my name

I laugh at the man in the moon

and peace comforts me again

and then I can breathe

I can feel each Holy breath

 

 

 

Exposure

art blur close up colors

Photo by Garon Piceli

I lie down under the burden

      of the courage that I lack

For you to see the sin in me 

      cannot be taken back

It is my greatest fear at times

      you might finally know

The dark and filth I tasted once

      I never want to show

Exposure of who I really am

     could it drive your love away?

After all you’re only human      

     dare I hope that you would stay?

The truth of exposure that I fear

     is a mystery not of loss

But a debt that is fully paid

    willingly hung upon a Cross

but grief always takes a side in things that really matter…

 

beach bottle cold daylight

Photo by Snapwire

 

Like a message in a bottle bobbing in the water

Sun bleached and salty skinned I washed upon the shore

 

I am made from stronger stuff than it appeared

being born an old soul, competent and sure

 

I wished for middle ground, something I could manage

But grief always takes sides in things that really matter

 

The literal peeling of my skin and raw down to the marrow

I wanted to die and be done with the making of this sorrow

 

Then a warm hand put a cup of water to my mouth

I lapped it up as if water wasn’t all around me

 

A voice said, ” I am grief and I am not here to take you under

But you must take a side in things that really matter.”

 

 

 

 

 

Due to Bad Weather…

Photo by Magda Ehlers

So I am sitting in the Detroit airport waiting for a late flight, due to bad weather and a plane pulls up…everyone gradually looks around, they get up and walk to the observation window…low and behold a military escort marches out into the rainy, ice cold apron and then off the plane comes a casket and a family…all of us in the window stand reverently and then a young man in uniform salutes…some people put their hand over their heart as it dawns on each of us what we are witnessing..some begin to shed tears…this person who has served their country is coming home…there are no news cameras, no horns blowing…we don’t know their name or their family but all of us mourn…all of us are relieved it isn’t our son or daughter, brother, sister, mom, or dad…all of us wish the story would be different…a somber blanket lay over this small band of witnesses to something so private yet so universal…I bow my head and pray for the family…pray for my family who lives in freedom…pray for my country that she might be healed…as the casket is loaded into the hearse the crowd begins to spread out and I hear a little three year old girl say, “Daddy, can we get some candy now?”…the Dad picks her up and hugs her close…he cannot speak…I walk away and ask God to forgive me for complaining earlier about the weather…

All the Pretty Horses

girl standing near carousel

Photo by Abby Chung 

 

Joni Mitchell and a cup of tea…

I shut the door so no one can see

and dream of something kept underground

when I had to jump off that merry-go-round.

 

I loved the ride and all the pretty horses

I loves what I thought I would be.

I would have sold my blood to be published

so all the work could read.

 

 

I would wax eloquent and be held in high esteem…

all the other riders would admire me.

They would gaze at me on my grand carousel

marveling at all the wisdom I share.

 

Well now I speak in present tense…

the merry-go-round broken down and spent.

For my profound literature there is no need

I still like Joni and a cup of tea.

sjad