Primitive religion is not believed, it is danced!

Arthur Darby Nock

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
And only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Browning

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Sanctuary is Me

“I have lived on the lip
of insanity, wanting to know reasons,
knocking on a door. It opens.
I've been knocking from the inside.”

When you make the two one
When you make the inner as outer
And the outer as inner – then
Shall you enter the Kingdom
                                                Jesus, Gospel of Thomas


Here I am
62 years old

So far life has been a long slog
waist deep through ooze and slime
usually of my own making

I have been well blessed
with a good brain
quick wit
and yes, even compassionate
although introverted compassion can be hard to sese

I have had success
and done some good things
in amazing places

so much has gone right
and I believe that the Sacred One
has been with me each step of the way
sometimes noticed, and sometimes ignored

and yet I still at times
feel waist deep in the bog
no “hinds feet on high places” for me

whats the deal?

the deal is that I thought, for so long
that the answers were “out there”
I even though God was “out there”
big, amazing, and pretty much inaccessible
at least to me

I wore, and sometimes wear
the title of “Reverend” like a rash
feeling very much unlike the amazing men and women
I see being Christ in the world

I have spent my life comparing
and striving
at times medicating

and now I know
that the kingdom is within
I am the sacred place
where the sacred one dwells

when I go inside
not outside
God is there
God’s presence is real
and life shifts

I have knocked on the door
as my Sunday School teachers taught for years
as the picture on the wall in my little home church illustrated (you all know what I mean?)

I have knocked and knocked
and now when the door opens
I realize that the Sacred has been here all the time
all the time

and when it is real
when the presence is felt
all becomes new

the mountain more amazing
the sun brighter
people more wonderful

that outer world I have so prized is transformed

to find joy in the outer world
and peace in the outer world
and love in the outer world

I have to find it first inside
In that sanctuary that is me
where God dwells.

Peace, Stephen

1 comment:

  1. Sometimes I have been in a "foreign land" and sung the songs of lament...but always I know God is goodness and there is more happening than is apparent to my inadequate understanding. And it is okay! Merton reminds me that God will never leave me to bear it alone...so I simply choose to trust in God's goodness. Period. And, old Sparky Schultz was quite a pastor to many stray sheep, I figure...one of my favorites...along with Buechner! A good season of thanksgiving for all y'all out there in God's Country! Peace of Christ!