Dearly Beloved,
Grace and Peace to you.
In this repentant season,
time of dust and ashes,
woeful via dolorosa—
cheer up.
God does not want your shame,
your groveling, your misery.
The Passionate One is in love with you,
and only wants you to let go
of your other lovers,
to come back,
oh, please, come back.

Listen beneath the clatter and roar
for her soft cry, so easily betrayed.
Can’t you feel her tugging inside you?
Be still, and let her song ring
down the empty hallways of your heart,
let her pleading make its way to you.

Forsake the drinking buddies who tell you
how to be happy. Go ahead, be rude to them.
Walk out on their desperate party.
Let go of all the clutter in your hands
and take hers, waiting for you in the stillness,
longing for you in the dust,
in the ruined silence of your empty house.

This repentant season is no time
to be morose, not when the Beloved
is so near to you.
This whole thing’s a valentine.
Let go of everything you love instead.
Disappoint your little gods of momentary comfort,
turn around, and be still,
and listen for the holy voice,
her rapture at your loveliness,
her infinite, tender desire
murmuring beneath your very breath,
“Beloved, be mine.”

Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light

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