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

Friday, April 30, 2021

carry on

So we do not lose heart. Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day.

                     2 Corinthians 4:16



we carry this pain with us

this pain that comes from bodies aging

this pain that comes from illness

this pain that comes from injury


we carry this pain with us

this pain that comes from injustice

from greed and the machinations of the power


we carry this pain with as

as words of hate and fear and bigotry

flow into our heads and hearts


as we watch and listen

to people who have closed their minds and hearts

accept lies as truth

and call evil good, and good evil


we carry this pain with us

as we watch another black son, father, brother, husband friend

gunned down

as we watch people choose guns over children

blindly stumbling down the way of domination and intimidation

as if is the way


we carry the pain of knowing that perhaps our pain

is nothing compared to the pain of others

systematically oppressed

systematically minimized

systematically controlled and intimidate


knowing that no matter how much pain

may reside in our own body

our own heart


there are those whose pain is beyond

our understanding


I cannot understand the pain of a black mother

the pain of a woman assaulted or minimized

the pain of the poor, the disenfranchised


we try so hard to deal with the pain

we medicate

we legislate

we manipulate


and yet the pain remains

woven into our bones

and into the fabric of our heart


on this morning

as I carry my own pain

as my body hurts when I move

and hurts when I don’t move


as my heart hurts

from the hate and fear

from the racism I see


as my mind aches

assaulted by those who would justify that which cannot be justified

by the worship of guns

by the overwhelming power of toxic individuality

by this world

this mess


I know that only the Flame of the Spirit

only the Divine Wind

can renew me


I need the inner fire

to scorch me

the inner wind

to move me


the world around me will always be painful

(until the Kingdom comes)

the pain will always be present


I will always carry it

it is unavoidable

it is the human experience


but I can be renewed

day by day

dying to be born

giving to receive

hoping against hope


walking with pain

but walking with hope

carrying not just pain

but carrying too a Love that will not let me go



Wednesday, April 28, 2021

search me

Search me, O God, and know my heart;

    test me and know my thoughts.

See if there is any wicked way in me,

    and lead me in the way everlasting.

                     Psalm 139



there is no escaping it

Sacred is not up there, out there

what we call God is not some sort of anthropomorphic being

who is fixed in one place at one time


is not One who “lives” in heaven


no, that Power, that Love, that Voice

that we try so hard to define in so many ways









is all around us

it is everywhere we go

but more, it is in us


which is why the Psalmist cries

“Where can I go from your spirit?

Or where can I flee from your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.

If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,

even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast. (vv 7-10)


that is scary and comforting at one and the same time

it is scary to be that close, to be known that well

it is comforting to be so filled and embraced by Love


sometimes I wonder how it is for the Beloved to watch

what goes on inside our hearts and heads


what is it like for love to exist next to so much hate (I cannot use a softer word)

what is like for compassion to live next to such anger

for forgiveness to live next to such resentment

for generosity to live next to such greed

and for humility to live next to such pride?


what is it like for Sacred Presence to look out through out

eyes, and see what love sees

while understanding what we see (which may not be the same thing at all, at all)


what is it like for Sacred when they see

who flows out of our fingers as we post an comment on Facebook or Twitter?


I cannot help but return after such musings

to the closing plea of the Psalmist

who I suspect, in his/her own way, must have had similar thoughts


Search me, O God, and know my heart;

    test me and know my thoughts.

See if there is any wicked way in me,

    and lead me in the way everlasting.


O power that created and sustains the universe

O power that is love

O Sacred Presence, Spirit, Child, Parent

that fills me and defines me


be in my thinking

be in my feeling

be in my seeing


be in me so completely

that you own my heart

transform my thoughts

and guide my actions


help me so that today

my life reflects the presence of Love

Friday, April 23, 2021

When your tears become mine

Until you can see

My tears are also your tears

Prayers are empty

                     Gina Belton (Connosoisseurs of Suffering)



another day

another black child dead


another day

another school shooting


another day

full of news of voter suppression


another day

another diagnosis of cancer


another day

full of tears


black mothers and fathers crying

over the futility of it all

crying because every day

every day

the news comes again of a child gone


white mothers, brown mothers,

mothers of all colors

crying over the fear that

as they send their child off to school,

they may never see them again


people crying because people filled with

fear and bias, greed and power lust

would deny them their right to vote

to have a voice

to be


the tears flow

like a never ending stream


and then the words come

“you have my thoughts and prayers”


but nothing changes

just another day

another shooting

another act of injustice

another act of oppression


nothing will change

until we finally understand

that the black boy lying in his own blood

on a Minnesota street

is our brother

our child


nothing will change until the tears of his mother

become our tears


we often hear it said

“they will not take it seriously, until it happens to them”

“it will not become real until it ‘hits home’”



until we understand

that each person out there

is a child of God

that each person out there is

a brother or sister


until we realize that what happens

to another

happens to a member of our family


nothing will change


may the tears come

may they come when we hear of another child dead

another person made homeless

another person refused healthcare

another person hungry

another person afraid

another person blocked from voting


may the tears come

like a flood

and may our prayers ride

our tears


to God

Sunday, April 18, 2021


I believe in values


if I don’t know what I value,

I won’t know how to live


what we value reveals what we believe is important

and if we live toward our values

which we almost unconsciously do


then our values shape

our thoughts, our perceptions of the world

and ultimately our actions


our values shape our lives

our lives reveal what our real values are


most of us have core values

which are woven into our being from the moment we are born


our parents shape our values

so do cultures




and even perhaps enemies


over the years these values become part of our fabric

they are who we are


core values can be positive

my parents, I believe, tried to install in me a set of values

those values were installed in them by their parents


I am part of an extended family that has received clear legacy

from Peter Albert Kliewer and Katherine Braun Kliewer

they taught their children, my parents, and my aunts and uncles

that it is important to be aware of the Sacred


for them as Mennonites the Sacred was clearly defined as the Biblical God


they taught their children that you should be honest

and that you should serve your community

that family was important

and that taking care of the planet is important


they taught their children that one should be a person of peace

and that violence is not retributive


my parents and my aunts and uncles picked all of this up

and passed it on, imperfectly at times

altered at times

inconsistently at times


but still it is there


love God

love other people

love yourself


take care of others

take care of yourselves

and do not get sucked into the vortex of hate and violence


this perhaps is revealed I how many members of my family

the other Kliewers, the Larsons, the Templins, the Kielsmeiers

are doctors, or nurses,

teachers, or ministers


how many have worked in “service” jobs, with one main goal

serving others

helping others

lifting others up


and I realized that this heritage, these deeply ingrained values

is why I will never understand those

whose value in dominance



why I will never understand those who want to gain power

not to help and serve

but to dominate and accumulate


what a difference it makes if your value is dominance

rather than service


it changes how you see your job

your role within in organization

it changes how you see people

it changes who you treat people


with dominance one works to have power and make money

with service one works to provide a service


with dominance one wants to be over people,

to be in charge, to have the power

with service one wants to work with people so the entire

organization and everyone in that organization do well


with dominance people are objects to be used

with service people are precious souls to be loved


with dominance one seeks to climb over others to the top

and the ends justify the means

with service one seeks to help everyone succeed, how one

accomplishes one’s task matters


I keep thinking about the great issues of our day

Guns (especially guns)


Voting rights


Honesty in the media


we are at our worst, on all these issues

when we see them through the lenses of dominance

rather than the lenses of service


for me, as one who seeks to follow Jesus

there is not option here

I must seek to walk the path of servanthood

(however imperfectly I must do that)


I hear people say

I’m the boss, I make the rules.

I am going to carry whatever gun I want, wherever I want

(no matter how many times, when people do that, people die)


I hear people say

It is important MY party wins, not matter what it takes to win

(vote suppression perhaps?)

It is important that my race, religion, ideology, whatever!!!!



I hear Paul say

Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ,

if any comfort from his love,

if any common sharing in the Spirit,

if any tenderness and compassion,

then make my joy complete by being like-minded,

having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.

Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,

not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.


In short, be like Jesus

Who, being in very nature[a] God,

    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;

rather, he made himself nothing

    by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,

    being made in human likeness.

And being found in appearance as a man,

    he humbled himself

    by becoming obedient to death—

        even death on a cross!


Dominance or servanthood

which pathway

do our values reveal?

Saturday, April 17, 2021

leaking grace


When you looked at me

your eyes imprinted your grace in me;

for this you loved me ardently;

and thus my eyes deserved

to adore what they beheld in you. . . .

Let us go forth to behold ourselves in your beauty.

                     John of the Cross, “The Spiritual Canticle,” stanzas 32, 36



what is grace

other than the Beloved

looking on us with eyes of love?


What is grace

other than the Beloved

loving us so deeply that we are given Love

permeated with the Sacred


the Beloved giving us a piece of

the Sacred

call it Spirit

call it love

a piece of himself/herself


so that we participate

in all that is peace

all that is hope

all that is joy

all that is love


and thus connected

an so filled

we are reconciled and transformed


new creations!

Sacred children


what is grace

other than we children of grace

flawed vessels that we are

cracked pots


leaking grace


looking on others the way the Beloved looks at us?

seeing in them not just a little piece of the divine

but also a little piece of ourselves


for we all participate

that “single, bigger Gazing and Loving”

(Richard Rohr, Daily Meditations, 4/11/21)


that some call God


we all are joined together

by the bond of Sacred Presence

that inner dwelling


so that Sacred is in me

and Sacred is in you

and thus I am part of you

and you are part of me


what is grace

other than realizing we all participate

in the same love

unearned and freely giving


all participate in the same



the same welcome


that we are indeed One in the Spirit

and that we have no other choice

but to love our neighbor


no matter who that neighbor is

no matter what that neighbor has done

no matter their color, culture

creed, sexual orientation

or ideology


we have no choice

but to love them as ourselves

passing on

humbly, through (in many cases) our weakness


(remember, grace is most often leaked)


the acceptance and welcome

we have received




It only takes a spark

To get a fire going

And soon all those around

Can warm up in its glowing

That's how it is with God's love

Once you've experienced it

You spread that love to ev'ryone

You want to pass it on


Thursday, April 15, 2021

After easter

it was the week after

Jesus was gone





but too much was the same

the same

the same

or worse


there was no jubilation

only fear

he had promised not to leave them alone

but they felt

so alone



Jesus was risen



and so they sat

and waited

and waiting


ah yes, it would come

like wind and fire

that moment when the advocate would come


it would come

that moment when they would be blown

tumbling and stumbling

out of that darkened and sour room

rank with the smell of disappointment


but not yet


how often are we in that liminal place

that dead space

where it is too painful to look back

and to frightening to look ahead


how often do we wait

and wait

for what is next


there are it seems, moments

when all that is left is trust

when all we have

is our belief

however faltering it might be for the moment


that we are Love

and that Love will come

and there will be

something next

something new


all those hungry ghosts

fear, and hate

illness and death


they hover



we believe

that wind and fire will come

and scattered them

and lift us


we believe evil will be conquered

we believe love will win


and we wait

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

commodity thinking

…we have developed a materialistic culture that treats the earth as a commodity that exists to serve our own selfish purposes.

                     Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Prayer of the Heart




if we take the Bible seriously

is Sacred



participates in the divine


the earth which is God’s self revelation

an incarnation

if holy


so to0 the creatures that live upon it

and so too we human creatures


unique permeated with the sacred

little incarnations


how dare we treat the earth as a commodity

as something soulless,

an object merely to be used for our benefit


how dare we any human being this way?

and yet we do


we rape and pillage the earth


and people too


how many people are treated as commodities

women (for example) objectified by men

objects to be used

for sexual pleasure

as brood mares

as servants


how many men too

are used


no one, I expect is exempt

bosses objectify workers

churches objectify ministers

parents objectify children

consumers objectify retail workers


we walk through life using others

making them less than

making them



the more we objectify

the more we use

the more we objectify

the more we abuse


everything becomes about us

about our wealth

our power

our guns

our political ideology


it no longer matters what happens to others


this it seems is the great sin of humanity

it is seen in the “big lie”

it is seen in voter suppression

it is seen in the assaults of women’s rights

it is seen in the treatment of all who are vulnerable

it is seen in climate change denial

it is seen in those who refuse to wear masks


it is seen in those who do deplorable things


frankly they cannot see that the creation they are destroying

is permeated with God

and that the person they would ignore, or endager

is a Sacred Child


it is seen in my own life, in too many ways

perhaps, dare I say it, it is seen in yours?


what can I do today to connect myself with all that is sacred

with all that is

with the earth, its creatures

with the people who surround me


I sit, on my way to help another, in an airport

vaccinated, masked and distanced


I watch the people wander to and fro

some rushing, some moving slowly

some full of energy

some sagging, as if they are carrying the weight of the world

on their shoulders


it is easy to simply ignore

feeling on a spark of love and interest for the service dog

who pants at his person’s feet


can I see that person without a mask as homo divinus

how can I

sense a connection

with all of these scurrying people


nameless, faceless, rushing, limping,wandering


headed on vacation

headed on a work trip

headed toward a dying parent or friend

headed to a medical center for treatment

headed to family


how can I see God in the son the shines through the window?

how can I see the invisible bonds

that bind us all together?


perhaps I only need to be aware of my own spiritual nature

of the God within me


for if the Sacred is me

certainly the Sacred is in them

and certainly in earth beneath

and the sky above


it is disturbing

to be so connected, so aware


but only when I am no longer alone


only when I am part of this whole

can I really be me

and allow you to be you




Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Just Wait


and see what comes

to fill

the gaping hole

in your chest.

Wait with your hands open

to receive what could never come

except to what is empty

and hollow

                     Jan Richardson, Circle of Grace, “Stay”, Wanton Gospeller Press



the day after Easter

must have been a disappointment


true, the tomb was empty

and there were the psychotic imaginings of the women

(how dare they)


but it was just another day

without Jesus


many of those who had followed

in the dusty of wake of Jesus

had simply returned to life as usual

a little sad


but what can one do with systematic oppression

except keep one’s head down

and try to stay out of trouble?


some had run, back to the Sea of Galilee

back to their nets and the stink of fish


some were huddled in an upper room

lurking in a darkness that reflected the

darkness in their souls


all of them

were hollowed out people

going through the motions

with tattered souls

and broken hearts







that what seemed so crazy and impossible

was actually true


waiting for him to show up

waiting for something to show up

to fill that gaping hole

to stop the ache


little did they know

what lay ahead

that rushing wind, those tongues of fire

that blessing


that would fill them to overflowing


ah, those times of waiting

when we too wander the streets unseeing

our hearts void and empty


ah those times of waiting

as we go through the motions

simply doing what we have always done

because it seems as if there is no option


ah those time of waiting

when we hide

hoping it will all just go away


have hope precious souls

little do we know

what lies ahead!


Just wait

Monday, April 12, 2021

death and resurrection

“The Christian faith… is really about death and resurrection

It’s about how God continues to reach into the graves we dig for ourselves

And pulls us out, giving us new life, in ways both dramatic and small.”



There they were in the garden

the tomb was empty

fear gripped them all


Jesus’ body was gone

Simply gone

nothing left but burial rags


belief was mixed with unbelief

bewildered most left

unable to bear the moment


but Mary stayed

and wept, and wondered


until a man appears

a gardener, from the looks of things

frantic words tumble from her mouth


if you know where the body is, tell me

I cannot abide

I cannot abide it being taken away



and then a voice she knows




and her eyes are open!



She rushes toward him

arms open

no fist bump

not handshake for her


she wants to feel him in her arms

feel his heart beat

and the movement of his breath


but no

it is not to be


Jesus is risen, but all has changed

this is not a time for old but new

this is not a time to retreat into the familiar

but a time for what is new


Jesus was risen, not to return to the old ways

Not to wander down dusty roads with them

Not to hunger and thirst with them,


not to eat with them, joke with them

Jesus was not on his way back to her and the others. He was on his way to God, and taking the whole world with him


The fact is that with the resurrection nothing was going to be the same


they could hold on to nothing past

all that had died

all that had been laid to rest


it was time to move on

to leave behind all that lay behind

all the pain, the fear, the hate, the ugliness


but also the comfortable, the know

the old pattern

the old ways


They had to let go of the earthly Jesus to get the risen Jesus

To get the Spirit and be lifted up by that Spirit, into resurrection living


When we come face to face with the risen Christ

He does not leave us in our struggles

He does not leave us in our comfort, in our old patterns


Instead Jesus meets us where we are and says, in effect

Wait, there is more

Wait, you haven’t seen anything yet


And then, through the power of the Spirit,

lifts us up out of whatever darkness entombs us. 

Lifts us up, and frees us from whatever snares us. 

Lifts us up out of our old comfortable patterns,


and move us forward

to whatever is next


whether we are ready

or not



Sunday, April 11, 2021

Atoms of love

And I repeat with the same old passion, although I am gradually beginning to think that I am being tiresome, “It is the only thing we can do, Klaas, I see no alternative, each of us must turn inward and destroy in himself all that he thinks he ought to destroy in others. And remember that every atom of hate we add to this world makes it still more inhospitable.”


And you, Klaas, dogged old class fighter that you have always been, dismayed and astonished at the same time, say, “But that—that is nothing but Christianity!”


journal entry from Etty Hillesum (1914–1943),

young Jewish woman who was killed at Auschwitz



I am, I am so sure, right

They are, I am so sure, wrong


They are people who hate other people

Imagine that

And I hate people like that!


They are people who are cruel and brutal

And I must attack them, vindictively


They must be countered




Or so I tell myself


But in the quiet of Facebook Exile

Where I landed for daring to tell the truth

(or so I think)


It occurs to me that there is enough

Free floating “atoms of hate” in the world

And it does not help, if like an unmasked person with COVID

I spray out even more


This is not a time to be a skunk, and spray hostility into the air

Nor is it a time to be a turtle, and withdrawn


It is instead a time to journey inside, and do battle

with myself


to go to that deep place that defines who I really am

and allow the living water of Love

wash away all that blurs the sacred image in me


the reality is that if I do not allow

Sacred to repair my inner house

If I do not let Jesus wash my feet (and Oh how I hate to need help)


Then, when I journey outward

and seek to live in this world

I will carry all my ills with me


and my ills will dance with the ills of others

and what a lively dance it will be

atoms of hate

and fear


harsh words

harsh actions

all of us, together becoming what we hate

becoming what we fear

making the world more inhospitable

a wasteland


Jesus showed us the way


Allowing Sacred to wash us

So that we, refreshed, the old self gone


We can add to this world



Monday, April 5, 2021

This stops here!

Rachel Held Evans reminded us, in one of her blogs, that the week between Palm Sunday and Easter was a Holy mess

“Holy Week” she writes, “wasn’t perfect for the disciples. They betrayed, ran away, lied, despaired, and doubted… Holy Week wasn’t perfect for Jesus. He wept. He wondered if there was another way.  He experienced the same agony and isolation that inspired the poet David to ask, “My God, my God. Why have you forsaken me?”


But maybe that’s how was supposed to be.

Maybe the somber passion of Holy Week, bracketed as it is

between the riotous, victorious noise of Palm Sunday

and the victorious quiet of Easter Sunday


teaches us something important

about how salvation comes, about how the work of God is done


Perhaps the painful journey of Holy Week reminds us that the only way Jesus could get from that moment when he was declared King, to that moment, as the risen one, he became the King


Was to humble himself

Was to enter into the pain of the people

Was to walk into the worst the world could offer,

And carry it all,

All that pain, and fear

All that greed and lust for power

All the failure

Everything - to the cross


The whole strange strategy of God is summed up in Philippians 2

Paul, quoting an ancient hymn, says, that Jesus,

though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God

as something to be exploited, but emptied himself,

taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.

And being found in human form, he humbled himself

and became obedient to the point of death–

even death on a cross…


Holy week is thus not a tragic story about a misunderstood man, but a triumphant story about God through Jesus becoming King of the world, not by using the violence and force of the world.


but by using the power of unselfish, sacrificial love.


That’s why he entered Jerusalem.

That’s why he went to the cross.

and gave his life, as a lamb lead to the slaughter (Isaiah 53)


This is a story about how God works

about how the victory of love is truly one

about how the kingdom of God is established on earth


and it involves a Crucified God.


We need this story, because, as Anne Lamontt once put it, we are Easter people,

Living in a Good Friday World


We live in a world that worships power

That seeks domination

That embraces affluence as merit


we live in a world where people use power, and dominance, and wealth

and yes, violence, to get what they want


we live in an oppressive world

where people struggle and are crushed,

And raise their voices



Lord,  Save us, now

Save us now


and we need to remember that the way of Jesus collides head on

with the way of Pontius Pilot, with the way of the world


and that salvation comes, not through the abusive and oppressive use of power

not through violence,

but through humility, and sacrifice

through generosity and compassion

through forgiveness and love


healing comes, newness comes

as we enter into the mess

stare hate in the face

and say “this stops here”, and refuse to participate in the hate, the racism, the violence, the abusive oppression of others

Saturday, April 3, 2021


Let Him easter in us, be a dayspring to the dimness of us, be a crimson-cresseted east.”

                                                                                      Gerard Manley Hopkins




may God “easter” in us all

no matter who we are


may Sacred rise

casting light

into the darkness


waking us up to our

essential beauty

and our original blessing


stirring our souls

into earnest acceptance

of Sacred Love


opening us up

filling us,



as the sun spills across the earth

caressing it and revealing its beauty


the Sacred Presence spills forth


kissing  the earth

with love

Friday, April 2, 2021


Riotous summer is long gone

brilliant yellows and red

bright greens


into the muted tones of fall

and then

deeper still into the grey and brown

of winter


a death


spring lies in a tomb

of frozen earth underneath the trees

reluctantly thawing and softening

giving hope that it will yield

and life will again emerge

from dark



and so we wait

and wait

for the tomb to crack open

and a gentle green

piece of life

to push its way into the cool clean air


Holy Saturday

the vitality of one

fully sacred

fully human

is gone

brutally killed for being love and reconciliation

in a world of hate a violence


gone is the man

entombed in stony darkness

and yet

hearts are reluctantly thawing and softening



that the tomb will crack open

and love and life

will flow again

into waiting hearts


and so this day

we wait

we wait


Thursday, April 1, 2021

love can

We will not be turned around

or interrupted by intimidation,

because we know our inaction and inertia

will be the inheritance of the next generation.

Our blunders become their burdens.

But one thing is certain,

If we merge mercy with might,

and might with right,

then love becomes our legacy,

and change our children's birthright.

                     Excerpt from “The Hill We Climb” by Amanda Gorman



the blunders of the fathers

the blunders of the mothers

the blunders of the Senators

the blunders of the Representatives

the blunders of the Priests, Prophets, and Pastors


they are not powerless

the mistakes we make through our action

or our inaction

are not without consequence


that is just the way this world works

the earth carries the scars of our carelessness

the air too


our bodies carry the excesses of our youth

when perhaps we played too hard

drank too heavily

and sought to expand our minds through drugs


we carry too the wounds of heart and soul

the damage of careless or casual love

the mutilations caused by fear and hate and greed


we try to avoid our pain

we blame others for it

we cast it into the dark depths of our souls


but it lies there, waiting


and our pain, which has made itself at home

oozes out,


and is visited on others

our lovers, our children

our friends and neighbors


and sometimes bursting forth

and exploding like bursts of gunfire in a grocery store

it does irreparable damage to others


it is hard to live with our pain

difficult to welcome it, and embrace it

and comfort it

and resolve it


and it sometimes feels as if it is too late

as if we cannot turn our lives around

our families around

our country

our world



but it is never too late

think resurrection dear one’s

think of the stark pain of the cross

and the cold finality of the tomb


and know what Love can do with pain

know what that Power which gives us form and life

can do with chaos and void


if Love can raise the sun each morning

and form the mountains

and feed the earth with water

and bring to life the animals, and birds, and fish

and you

and I


then Love can transform hate into love

and greed into generosity

and violence into peace


and Love can turn us around

Love can heal, and restore, and reconcile


Love can become The Way


our blunders are not powerless

but neither is Love


So let us not grow weary in doing good

Let us not grow weary of loving

for we will reap at harvest time,

if we do not give up  (Galatians 6:9)