love’s casket

love?
I shuddered when he said the word
I used to know love
back when I knew pain

I tried love then
and love served me well
for a time
until I let love carry me away

then love
right when I felt highest
let me fall
and I broke

love stayed with me
claiming to nurse my wounds
rubbing on ointments
that felt like salt

I pushed love away
and without my feeding love
or encouraging love
love died

I laid love to rest
buried love
in a casket
under the ground

“so you see”
I told him
“I no longer know love
love is dead to me”

dead to you is different from simply dead
he said
“perhaps love is only waiting
to be awakened”

could it be
that love had been buried alive
and that it might
still live?

I was afraid
who wants to dig up a casket
in hopes of finding a living soul
only to discover a corpse?

he left me alone
he couldn’t dig it up for me
this was my task
my choice

I sat at the graveside
as I watched the sun set
and before leaving
peeled back some of the turf near the headstone

the next morning I returned
with a shovel
and began to dig
trying not to wonder what I would uncover

as the sun rose
my sweat and tears
turned me into a muddy mess
I stopped digging at noon

my shovel scraped wood
and my whole being throbbed
I could not go on
so I sat and stared at love’s casket

until it began to rain
and the water from above
rinsed me clean
of all the grime of the work

I watched it pool on the exposed wood
mesmerized by the concentric ripples
running into each other
and off the edge

the water finished the job
I had begun
and love’s casket
lay fully exposed

I took it up
still afraid to open it alone
and took it to him
a gift

a sad gift
perhaps nothing
but a moldy box
full of rotted memories

I couldn’t watch
as he pried open the lid
but as it gave way
I couldn’t take my eyes off him

and when his love met mine
my love began to revive
like mouth to mouth CPR
simultaneously intimate and dangerous

it hurt
but after knowing
the paralysis of self-protection
I found that the pain of living is unparalleled

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dear self

dear self,

it’s going to be alright in the end
you committed to this, you’ll see it through
even more
He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it
you knew peace and unity before
you’ll know it again

for now
you have a job to do
it’s yours to do because you will do it well
you knew this once
I still know it
so I remind you

remember…
let yourself be carried back
to the beginning of things
when you knew what you could accomplish
and why you were the best one to do it

you still are

look forward…
allow yourself to fly ahead
to the end of things
when you’ll really know what you could accomplish
and why you were the best one to do it

because you did it

then return to the present
may this reminder and this hope
empower you to live today
to accomplish what you were sent to do
in the best way that only you can

you have and you will

sincerely, me

after the tears {spoken word guest post}

a beautiful spoken word testimony from my dear friend and sister Moriah
many thanks to her for allowing me to share it with my readers
her poetic voice is beautiful and strong and touching
play the video to let her reach out and touch you

what is truth?

“what is truth?”
a sincere question?
or an insolent retort?

from Pontius Pilate
to the freshman at Kansas State University
the words are often repeated

for the sincere questioner
the truth about Truth
may be revealed

dictionary.com (full definition):
TRUTH, n.
1. the true or actual state of a matter:
2. conformity with fact or reality; verity:
3. a verified or indisputable fact, proposition, principle, or the like: mathematical truths.

but perhaps for the sincere questioner
(the one who really wants to know Truth)
this question is the wrong place to begin

ἀλήθεια {aletheia}
literally “not-lie”
truth; fact; knowledge

to ask, “what is truth?”
is to request knowledge
to seek out the facts

not a bad desire
but in order to know Truth
perhaps there is a better question to pose

the one who really wants to know should ask, “Who is Truth?”
for Truth is more than facts and knowledge
he is the foundation, established from the beginning

אֱמֶת {emeth}
truth; firmness; faithfulness

if only Pilate would have known what to ask
he would have found the answer right in front of him
for before him stood Yeshua, the Truth

moments after asking, “what is truth?”
Pilate sent the embodiment of Truth to His death
and the very foundations of the earth were shaken

but Truth was not only established from the beginning
Truth is established forever
and not even death itself could hold Him

Yeshua, the living Truth
rose from the dead
Truth cannot be destroyed

this is the truth that I want the freshman at Kansas State University to know
as well as all other sincere questioners that I may encounter:
Truth stands firm when every other foundation has been shaken

my brothers have not died in vain

I am pressed hard
by the weight of my brothers’ death
but not crushed
for my brothers and I do not carry the weight alone

I am perplexed
by the insanity of it all
but not to despair
for my brothers and I are set-apart saints

being hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; being perplexed, but not in despair;
{II Corintians 4:8}

their persecution
assures me that they lived for Messiah
they are not forsaken
for death is gain; they have gone to live with Him

they were thrown down
forced to their knees on the sand
but not destroyed
for they were more than the bodies they left behind

being persecuted, but not forsaken; being thrown down, but not destroyed;
{II Corintians 4:9}

what was my brothers’ crime?
“carrying around the Cross illusion in their heads”
bearing the death of their Master in their bodies
they too were delivered to death

yet they do not share
only in their Master’s death
but the lives they lived mirrored His life as well
marking them as his followers

Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Master Jesus, that the life of Jesus might also be manifested in our body. For we, the living, are always delivered to death for the sake of Jesus, that the life of Jesus might also be manifested in our mortal flesh, so that death indeed is working in us, but the life in you.
{II Corintians 4:10-12}

what am I to do?
I cannot remain silent
my brothers would not have me mourn for them in secret
for all this was for God’s glory

they did not die in vain
any more than their Master died in vain
no, just as He was raised to eternal life, so will they be
and we who are left must speak up about it

But having the same spirit of belief, according to what has been written, “I believed, therefore I spoke,” we also believe, therefore we also speak, knowing that He who raised up the Master Jesus shall also raise us up through Jesus, and shall present us with you. For all this is for your sake, so that grace, having spread through the many, would cause thanksgiving to overflow, to the glory of God.
{II Corinthians 4:13-15}

the pressure of knife to neck
may not have seemed slight or momentary at the time
but my brothers now see it for what it was
in the light of the weighty glory they now know

how much less what I experience?
why spend such time and effort looking at what I see with mortal eyes
and ignoring what I can’t see
but know lasts forever?

Therefore we do not lose heart, but even if our outward man is perishing, the inward man is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary pressure, is working for us a far more exceeding and everlasting weight of glory. We are not looking on what is seen, but on what is not seen. For what is seen passes away, but what is not seen is everlasting.
{II Corinthians 4:16-18}

this is why my brothers died
because their bodies were temporary and destructible
and a mansion awaited their souls
in the presence of God Himself

God Himself, who promised me a mansion with Him
calls me to spread grace and thanksgiving while I can
because my body is temporary and destructible
this is why I live

For we know that if the tent of our earthly house is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, everlasting in the heavens.
{II Corinthians 5:1}

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