Pass Through the Waters

Pilgrims, we return again to Jordan where the old familiar waters flow; As always we face the choice to enter, awash in what we do not know. Familiar the doubt, uncertain the prospect: the promise declares like a quaking in sky, yet how it transpires, our toes must encounter and nothing ensures that our feetContinue reading “Pass Through the Waters”

Epiphany: Unexpected Myrrh

…all those from Sheba shall come. They shall bring gold and frankincense, and shall bring good news, the praises of the Lord. (Isaiah 60:6b) The promise shines bright, but not all have eyes to see. Many search elsewhere, dismissive of their quest for nothing great comes from Palestine. Preferring the grandeur of temple and palaceContinue reading “Epiphany: Unexpected Myrrh”

“The chariots and horsemen of Israel” (For the end of Epiphany)

The heart seeks Tabernacle: on mountain-top, by river-bank, it longs to settle, to hold the Presence safe, within arm’s reach, just the length of an Elijah’s-staff away. Yet the false Tabernacles we weave as curtains against truth turn Transfiguration to self-help session and seek double portions to allay the moment’s loss. Day turns to night.Continue reading ““The chariots and horsemen of Israel” (For the end of Epiphany)”

Epiphany: The Implications of Light

At first darkness you saw it, Light looming large on the horizon, transfiguring and sanctifying all that it struck. Yet you were drawn, contrariwise, to a glistening object that, no light of its own, could only reflect or, at worst, refract. Distracted by prismatic brilliance, you answered the wrong call, saw charisma and grabbed atContinue reading “Epiphany: The Implications of Light”

Broken Epiphanies

Save me, O God: for the waters are entered even to my soul. I stick fast in the deep mire, where no stay is: I am come into deep waters, and the streams run over me. (Psalm 69:1-2, 1599 Geneva Bible) Is it, as Bosch would have it, a sinking scene, hut scarcely erect, while in the background knights andContinue reading “Broken Epiphanies”

Epiphany: Godswept

An error in the typeface, no doubt: a missing space between God and swept, as in, a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Yet, in that mistaken instant, my mind glimpses God sweeping, baptismal waves enfolding me, Godswept, swept up in God. Was it like this, at Jordan, or at Ephesus,Continue reading “Epiphany: Godswept”

Epiphany: Heartshine

“What can I give him, Poor as I am?” Christina Rossetti Today is one of the most important days in the old church calendar, but also one of the most widely forgotten: the feast of Epiphany. Today we remember the wise men visiting Jesus, but we also remember what this represents, that the Gospel hasContinue reading “Epiphany: Heartshine”

“The thick darkness where God was”

This is what must first be given to the painting, a harmonious warmth, an abyss into which the eye sinks, a voiceless germination… (Paul Cézanne) How often is he shown with those horns of light, as though his head were itself full of the brightest luminescence and two cracks, two holes had formed inside his skullContinue reading ““The thick darkness where God was””

“You are God’s field, God’s building” 

Good news. He also works in earthy things: not only stars but soil and grass, carves churches from stone souls, makes mud-houses whole, and knows the ways a seed must break. Good news that maimed bodies are his building, that the one-eyed, the lame, may be fed in his field, good news that his isContinue reading ““You are God’s field, God’s building” “

20 Contemplations #20: Enlighten

Arise, shine, for your light has come… (Isaiah 60:1a) Then the Glory opens up, and the exposition begins…after the sheaves of night, the spirals of anxiety, here the triumph of love and the tears of joy – all the passion of our arms around the Invisible!… (Olivier Messiaen) Do you see a star unlike theContinue reading “20 Contemplations #20: Enlighten”