A different kind

         The soldiers also mocked him,
         coming up and offering him sour wine, and saying,
         “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!”
         There was also an inscription over him,
         “This is the King of the Jews.”

                  —Luke 23.36-38

An unrecognizable Messiah, this one,
whose power is hidden in defeat,
who lives in the Land of Not-Oneself,
who knows the secret kingdom of grace
and its magical powers.

We didn’t expect this kind of Mighty One,
without army or court or political victory,
whose throne is powerlessness,
whose palace is human suffering,
whose power is not domination
but to draw us into resurrection.

We still don’t quite get it,
chastened by our losses,
fearful of our destitution,
that this is the greater power,
Not-Ours, from the beyond within,
given, not seized, not even held,
not standing over us
but flowing through us;
that we are loved from beneath
to be of a different kind.

On our knees, stripped of our powers,
empty handed, we awaken
to this vast might, to our royalty,
and our waiting subjects.


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