A Beauty of The Daring

You lay there,

smashed into obscurity,

deluged with all that a stormy heaven could hurl.

Yet you don’t drown in your sorrows

or address invitations to a well-deserved pity-party.

Instead,

you lie where you’ve fallen,

a pummelled version of your famed beauty,

and you bloom.

Bloom!

How dare you?

What makes you think you can stake your claim to beauty

down there in the dirt?

Why do you answer with this slow smile,

this peaceful glow on cherubic cheeks?

What do you have that

I don’t,

that yours is a beauty of

the daring?

*

“For I hold you by your right hand – I, the Lord your God.  And I say to you, Don’t be afraid, for I am here to help you.”  Isaiah 41:13

Rise Above!

Rise above!

This world will try to break you,

Tear you down, forsake you,

Smash your dreams, deface you,

But you can’t let it win!

Rise above!

The past will scratch and claw you,

Terrify and flaw you,

Masticate and gnaw you,

And wear your patience thin.

Rise above!

There is One who knows you,

Beautifies and grows you,

Cherishes and chose you,

So let the rise begin!

“Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.  Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you.  I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”  Isaiah 41:10

Fighting the Undertow

Image courtesy of Guy Sports

I caught a faint reflection

of what I thought was me –

I leaned too close and fell right in

The river fast and deep.

The waves’ roar, fierce and hungry,

Clutched with cruel claws;

Tossed me end to end to tip

And throttled with wet jaws.

My orientation left me

In search of space less cold

As wild I struck with hands and feet

To gain a spot to hold.

My nostrils flared, my lungs drank wet,

I thought that I was done –

When whispered in dishevelled ear

 “Stand up, the battle’s won!”

‘Stand up?’ I cried, and swallowed gulps

Of water wild with spray.

And tossing hard upon the waves,

I felt my heart give way.

“Stand up!” the stern rebuke rejoined.

For balance, I sought new;

Fighting hard at current’s toss

As foot struck rock, hope grew.

The water, rushing on its way

Was only to my waist;

Although its fury gnashed and writhed

And furiously raced –

Walk through, I could; with effort true

I made it to the sod,

And choking long, and gasping hard,

I gave my thanks to God.

Image courtesy of PD Photo

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine.  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you walk through the rivers, they will not sweep over you…” Isaiah 43:1,2 NIV

Hit the Lights!

Light is amazing.

Pure energy, it dashes through time and space at alarming speeds.

It comforts small children’s dreams in the guise of plastic cartoon characters plugged into walls.  It stimulates plant growth and powers generators.  It illumines pages under covers.  It discloses refrigerator contents.

And it lives in eyes when mouths are silent and moments need no words.

Light.

Without it, the world is – well, dark.  Drab.  A bit scary – a place for vampires to lurk and nightmares to creep and potential to lie hidden.  A place where true treasure remains undiscovered and beauty, cloaked.

So hit the lights!

“Who among you fears the Lord and obeys His servant?  If you are walking in darkness, without a ray of light, trust in the Lord and rely on your God.”  Isaiah 50:10 NLT

When the light pours in, ordinary sheds its skin, and extraordinary slithers out of its carcass.  Inherent beauty is coaxed out of the shadows.  Veins glow and pulsate with life!  Structure and shape gleam.  Colour radiates with new textures, tones, hues, and vibrancy.

Raise your face to it!  Meet your destiny with shoulders squared.

You don’t need to live in the dark any more.

Hit the lights!

Finding Melody in the Primordial Ooze

Imagine for a moment…

Imagine that you just turned forty.

Imagine that you just learned some things.

Imagine that you learned that what was, wasn’t.  And worse – that what wasn’t, was.  That  your very identity had been borrowed from lies others had told you for so long, you forgot they weren’t even true.

Imagine that you learned The Secret.

And in the learning, the Big Bang undid all your DNA, and you found yourself, stunned, floating at the whim of a biological current,  bits of blown-up soul-particles scattered hither and yon throughout a primordial ooze.

The shock almost did you in.

Sing, Melody, sing!

Imagine that you bobbed and wove your way in the dark for – what was it?  Days?  Months?  Or years?  It little mattered.

Sing, Melody, sing!

As your eyes adjusted to the low light,  you began to see ‘you-bits’ – so many!  But so many were only bone-bleached carcasses of what you thought belonged –  their skinless skulls ‘hearkened with a grin,'(1) begging you to give them skin-space inside you.  But that still small voice told you they were misfits, caricatures of a cadence, not the real song.

Sing, Melody, sing!

“But I don’t know the notes!” you cried.

Little by little, you discovered clues – note by note, the parts were assembled.  A tremor, whisper-thin, stretched you taut, and you began to hum.

Sing, Melody, sing!

“But I can’t discern the tune!” you cried.

In practicing, your discoveries mounted.  Discriminating more easily between falsetto and vibrato, your trembling fingers sought more elements – rests and staves, clefs and trills, all were woven into the humming.

Sing, Melody, sing!

“What words do I sing?” you cried, exhausted and undone.

What words do you want to sing?

And you knew.  You knew.  Your song was your choice.  The building blocks were all around you, in a beautiful chaos, yours for the choosing.  The letters, a cosmic alphabet soup, bobbed in delightful freshness.  The Voice, a heavenly harmony, provided the back-up.  And the Song – oh, the song!  Its ribbons of light-energy pulsated with a beauty so visceral, it strummed your vocal chords.

And you sang!

“The mountains and hills will burst into song, and the trees of the field will clap their hands! ”  Isaiah 55:12 NLT  

And all of creation, hearing the Melody, sang along…

(1) A reference to Canadian poet Robert Service’s work “The Cremation of Sam McGee”

As Majestic as Mountains

Is there anything on earth as majestic as mountains?

The Canadian Rockies are world-renown for their beauty.  People flock to them like moths to a porch light.  Hikers, skiers, campers, paddlers of kayaks and canoes,  relaxers and revellers, all congregate to gawk in unrestrained delight at these hunks of rock and rubble.

Tons upon billions of tons of granite are aligned in the range comprising the magnificent Rockies, which stretch for thousands of miles, creating a barrier powerful enough to create new climatic conditions on either side.

“Who else knows the weight of the earth or has weighed the mountains and hills on a scale?” Isaiah 40:12b NLT

Who, indeed?

The thought of this God, enthroned in jewelled light, weighing the mountains on a scale – well, that rather puts things  into perspective, doesn’t it?

And that thought is beautiful, as majestic as mountains…