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Church

18 Apr

There is something too sterile,
Too surreal,
In the off-white sheetrock
And speckled tile floors
And burgundy carpets
And pipeless organs
And a plain polished cross hung
Under fluorescent-bulbed ceilings.
They colour God like a surgeon in white;
Too clean to be touched,
Too clean to touch us.

And I know that Church is people
And I know that Church is healing
And I know that Church is cleansing
And pure and holy and sanctified
But faith is a battleground
Faith is a wandering 40 year path through deserts
And mud strewn swamps of confusion
And questions
And skinned-knees
And enlightening peaceful rest
In the arms of the Creator
Wiping sweat and tears from our faces.

So, give me old bricks
And a tarnished candelabra
Give me the aching and worn,
Flawed, scarred and stumbling,
Uncertain but loving,
World-weary stranger
Give me a crucifix
Even though Jesus has risen
To remind me that there isn’t
Such distance between
This world and the Divine
Because the Divine drew us close
He knew sweat and blood
He knew dirt and age
And He walked roads
That left feet caked with all sorts
And He did that so all sorts
Could come to the Holy
Not after being cleaned
But in need of cleaning
Not after being healed
But broken and ailing
Not polished and perfected
But real and alive
Not answered
But seeking.

The veil was torn apart
That there would be no barrier
And yet, I see these sanctuaries
Where we come TO God
Causing me to feel distant and dirty
Instead of Home at the Throne.
There’s nothing wrong with new buildings
And clean windows
Polished wood
And new hymnals
But they cannot carry the weight of the ages
The way my soul does
They cannot echo the harmony
That my heart sings the way stone will
And stained glass and archways
Colour and shape
The experience of life
Brought to the altar
And laid down
Because it was welcomed
Because it was called…

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1 Comment

Posted by on 18 April 2016 in Poetry

 

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