Birthpangs (Twenty-Fifth Sunday After Pentecost)

In the meantime, nation will rise against nation;
The earth will quake and rumours will spread;
Many will stand and say, I am he,
And many kings will kill other kings.

If at times you quake too with the earth,
If your prayers sometimes shudder in silence,
Lift up your eyes, wipe the dirt from your face.
These are the birthpangs beginning.

For all that is precious and new
Must be born somehow;
And for hearts of flesh to rise up within us,
Our hearts of stone must first break open.

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