Saturday, February 27, 2021

 gratia

In the valued

     stillness of

          the moment

I raise prayerlike

     thoughts of

          gratefulness

For those who

     grapple with Covid's

          death dealingness

Who practice caring

     beyond

          self security

And those who

     occasion healing

          antidotes

For those who

     bury the dead

          with dignity

Who draw on the

     heart to comfort

          the bereaved

And hold the door

     open for an

          infusion of hope

That all who suffer may

     remember joy         

          and reclaim peace



Saturday, February 6, 2021

 

How to Fix a Broken Compass

Moral compass

     to steady

          the course

Corroded by

     values held

          too loosely

Rusted by

     lack of

          employing

Disabled by

     frozen fear

          combustible hate

Corrupted by

     misleading

          fables

Remagnetize to

     find spiritual

          core

Recalibrate with

     reforming

          work

Ready to

     step on

          winding paths


Friday, January 22, 2021


 

In the Time I have left 



Stories to repair

    trash to go through

        thoughts to re-collect

A past to reform

    shape for future use

        release non usables

Retrain the mind

    refresh the soul

        restart journey

Speak beauty full truth

    flex imagination

        detassle guilt

Stretch laugh 

    muscles 

        eurythmical 

Unlisting what

    does not

        tantalize

Sunday, January 10, 2021

 

Mystical Moment

Relentless

     news

          noise

Heart

     eroding

          dis-ease

Clogging

     caring

          apparatus

Ushering in

     redemptive

          silence

Quietude

     expanding

          space

Formless

     breathless

          calm

Crystallizing

     clear

          interval

Room for

     God to

         impregnate


Breath restored

     emerge

          love equipped

Monday, January 4, 2021

 

Letting go and holding on


At the age of 12, I jumped, for the first time, into water over my head at Scout Camp, dog-paddled across the pool and was declared a swimmer. I was ecstatic.

At the age of 21, on orders to return to headquarters in the south, I confiscated a jeep, drove all the way across Korea at the 38th parallel, forged papers to catch the train back to Taegu. I was safe.

At the age of 50 I ran a mile, then 5, then 10 and one day had the wild notion to run 26.2 When I did, I was overjoyed.

At the age of 58, I loosened my grip on the wing strut of a Cessna 186 and floated to the ground in Reno, Nevada. I was tranquil-ized.

At 83, I played a 9 hole golf course in my mind while the doctors repaired my heart. I was re-lived.

At 89, I sometime walk the treadmill at 2.5 mph for ten minutes, eleven if I'm up to it. I am grateful.

Now, my wife drives me to the Blood Bank to donate every eight weeks. Life is good.

Sunday, December 13, 2020

      My wife, Maurine, stays in touch with United Church of Christ ministerial annuitants (pensioners) on behalf of the Board of Pensions to let them know their service is valued. I asked her to share her holiday letter to them to remind us of deeper dimensions of Advent/Christmas. 

                                                                                                                                Max



For Such a Time as This
     Esther 4:14


Dear Annuitants,

          Ah! What a difference a year makes!

          As we have visited this year – all by phone of course! -

               you have shared different realities.

                    Frustration; wonder.

                   Goodness; pain.

                    Anxiety; creativity.

               Covid – 19 has created a different way of living for us.

                    Facemasks; social distancing; hand-washing.

               Yet the blessings of God' presence abide

                    in some unusual ways!

                    Zoom! Walks in the beauty of creation,

                    Quiet times to reflect. Face time.

               God's presence abides as it always has.

         This Advent/Christmas 2020, as we stay home and adjust,

               My mind wanders to the event that began this tradition -

               The journey that became Advent/Christmas 0000 -

          The year Joseph & Mary, instead of staying home

               as was customary for the birth of their child,

               traveled for the Census, and there delivered

                    the one we know as Jesus, the Christ.

               How different that must have felt to them,

                    and yet, they managed.

               As will we.

          God has blessed us “For such a Time as This.”

          I am certain that each of you

               will continue to embrace opportunities

               to share the love, joy, and peace of God,

          and I thank you for sharing those gifts!

          Happy Advent! Merry Christmas!! Blessings in 2021!!!

          We'll speak again next year – and in the meantime,

               you know how to be in touch in the need arises!

                                                                                        Maurine   

Friday, December 4, 2020

 

Set Us Free

Our world needs truth, lies take a deathly toll

We hear the cries of those in deepest pain

Bring tyrants down let a just love prevail

May those be judged who prey upon the poor

Raise up for us leaders both bold and true

When justice reigns we will be free to love



     This year I will add a candle of Justice to my virtual Advent Wreath.

Our nation may survive Covid-19. Thousands of people won't. That fills me with deep sadness. That so many suffer and die needlessly because of callous indifference, greed or malice makes me angry.

Scientific creativity with the help of health care professionals will give us the choice to end the pandemic.

A fresh slate of political leaders will provide the same choice for a societal reformation. I applaud the desire to unite and heal our dysfunctional democracy.

But if we ignore the evil and refuse to hold perpetrators who caused our distress accountable, we will be telling ourselves and our children that unjust and immoral actions are only normal.

Love without justice has a hollow ring.

                                                            Max