O Love, be my Sovereign

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
      
         Christ is above all rule and authority
                  and power and dominion.

                           —Ephesians 1.21

O Love, be my Sovereign.
Rule my world. Control my life.
I subject my freedom
to your absolute mercy.

I pledge my allegiance
to your dynasty of justice,
the tyranny of your grace,
your mercy that will not be overthrown.

Exercise dominion
over all my rules and powers,
my fears and attachments,
my grasping ambition.

O Love, direct my life,
every moment, every choice,
the leanings of my heart,
the secret movements of my will.

I live to serve you,
in trust and gratitude
to carry out your will
in all I do and say and intend.

O Love, I am your loyal subject.
Overpower my defenses;
do with me what you will.
O Love, reign entirely in me.

         
         

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 21, 2014  Leave a comment

Sovereign

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
      
         God raised Christ from the dead
         and seated Christ at God’s right hand in the heavenly places,
         far above all rule and authority and power and dominion.

                  —Ephesians 1.20-21

Tradition claims the Prince of Love
is ruler of the universe,
that forgiveness is above every power,
that grace overwhelms every dominion.

Skeptics demur. But what else sustains,
what else is worth it?
What but love bore Christ along,
and fueled his touch, his speech,
his dying breath? And what but grace
could make and use his rising?
If you’ve a better god, choose boldly.
Make sure it’s big enough for your whole life,
worth ruling you like your death.

In this world of seas and stars,
of music and the intricacies of your flesh,
of sundogs and tree frogs and memory,
of tragedy and the way its children survive,
even chaos is a feeble, flimsy thing,
and selfishness a bridge to nowhere.

I’ve seen sixty-one years
of a crazy world and all its wonders,
my dying and rebirth, forgiveness,
and what holds me in the wind.
The little candle in the darkness was love,
the strength that bore me was love,
my only failures a failure to love.
It’s the warp my life is woofed upon,
the only sense that everything makes,
the only reason that everything is.

You can have your randomness;
the old mosaics have it right:
even in the storm of chaos, the roar of evil,
love is the Lord of heaven and earth,
its teacher my sovereign, my truth.
It’s the little swaying bridge I’ll take
over the foaming, thundering chasm.

         
         
Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 20, 2014  Leave a comment

Give me eyes

      
         Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food,
         or thirsty and gave you something to drink?
         And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you,
         or naked and gave you clothing?
         When was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?

                  —Matthew 25.37-39

God of mercy,
         give me eyes to see your face.

God of mercy,
         give me ears to hear your cry.

God of mercy,
         give me hands to reach out to you.

God of mercy,
         give me a heart to know your presence.

God of mercy,
         give me mercy.
         that I may draw near to you.

         
         

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net


To receive Unfolding
Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 19, 2014  Leave a comment

The least of these

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.

      
         Whatever you did to the least of these
                  you did to me.

                           —Matthew 25.40

This is not a simile.
         The poor are not an allegory.
                  God is the poor.

God is not observing them, but in them,
         the lonely and the rejected.
                  God takes the lowest place.

God is the powerless one,
         the misunderstood one,
                  the crucified one.

Under the bridge,
         in the nursing home,
                  in solitary,

this is the throne of the Sovereign,
         the Ruler of the universe:
                  the cross.

Until you see the glory of the divine
         in the street gang, the wheelchair,
                  the power of the heavens in the lifer,

you do not believe.
         Don’t go elsewhere to worship in ease.
                  Bow down, and serve, and know.
         

         
         
Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 18, 2014  Leave a comment

Almost bare

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
      
         
                  

The tree is almost bare now;
only a handful of yellow leaves remain.

The sun hugs branches
it hasn’t seen for a long time.

I am not yet so open
in my prayer.

A woodpecker works the bare limbs
and I am given hope to go on.

________________________
Weather Report

Clear
as a low pressure front
pushes desires and regrets
downwind
and the world before us appears,
glorious in detail, present
and divine.

         
         
Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 14, 2014  Leave a comment

God is climbing a long hill

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
      
         
                  
God is climbing a long hill in you,
bearing the load, walking the distance.

The little sunrise of wonder in you
is God awakening to a blessing.

The strength you have is God
taking in a breath, ready for this.

God bears this grief,
walks the winding path, each step.

This journey is God walking in you,
holding your head up.

The silence is God praying in you.
Your cry is God crying out.

The energy of the universe
unfolds in this way.

The presence of God disappears
into the world and reappears in you.

God walking this road, shedding these tears,
becomes your life.

         
         
Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 13, 2014  Leave a comment

Coin

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
      
         
                  

You are not some little cent
that God has buried in the earth
to save in fear or greed.
You are a coin of greatest worth
that God has spent in joy
for those in need,
that God, delighted, gave
to someone dear,
or lent and lends again
at no interest, freely,
sent into the great economy of love.

I wonder now:

         how will God

                  spend you

                           today?

         
         
Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 12, 2014  Leave a comment

Veterans Day

      
         
                  
Today I pray for veterans,
for those whose lives we’ve used
to fight our wars,
whose blood we’ve spent
to have our way.
They bear our wounds
and the weight of our fear.
They are the lambs we sacrifice
to the gods of our Empire.
Lord have mercy.

For those who have been in hell
I pray that their bodies be mended,
their memories healed,
their souls restored.

I pray for veterans of all nations
who served their country,
risked their lives
and did their best.

I pray for mothers of soldiers,
for children of war,
for all who suffer from the violence of nations.

I pray for those who work for peace,
who risk and suffer in the work of justice,
for reconciliation and life.

I pray for the veterans of all my little wars,
those I have used or wounded
or fought in the name of my little gods.

In the name of the Prince of Peace
I pray for peace,
for Armistice
among all.
Amen.

         
         

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 11, 2014  Leave a comment

Overflowing

      
         
                  
Beloved,
no matter the business of the day
         today I wish more than all
to receive your blessings,
         to accept the unceasing love
         you pour out to me
like sun in the desert,
         rivers flowing into the sea,
like light entering my eyes,
         breath filling my body,
filling me with your blessing,
         filling my body and my awareness,
my hopes and desires,
         my sins and my wounds,
my work and my resting,
         my knowing and my not knowing,
filling me to overflowing,
         with your grace filling me
         to overflowing.

         
         

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 10, 2014  Leave a comment

Neither foolish nor wise

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
      

         The bridesmaids got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the wise, “Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.” But the wise replied, “No! there will not be enough for you and for us; you had better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.”
                  —Matthew 25. 7-9

The wise maidens went in,
and reveled in the party, the noise,
the light and warmth, the joy
of the bride and groom…

                                    and then

looked around, and half of their friends
were missing,
                      half the party gone,
the feast of faithful love undone,
the marriage gutted—

and only then they knew:

they could have shared their light
and then had more.

In times of darkness
         neither folly nor wisdom
                  is worth light, worth mercy,
                        worth joy.

         
         
Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

__________________
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
www.unfoldinglight.net

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)hotmail.com

November 7, 2014  Leave a comment

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