Going Up to Jerusalem

O God, let me climb
the Lord’s mountain,
That I may be changed,
Charged, and sent.

Going up to Jerusalem,
May sinful Man
Grab on to the tassels 
Of my garment,
And run with me,
Drawn heavenward
By Your Cross.

On this mountain,
This all hallowed mountain,
From which the bones of Adam,
And the faith of Abraham, cry out,
Rescue,save, deliver,
My Redeemer comes.

©2011 Joann Nelander

Passion of a Warrior

When did his passion begin?
Did it commence with the kiss
By which he bid his loved ones adieu.
Or did the call to battle
Bid him count the cost,
Shattering vanities and proud hoorahs,
With winter ice
Though veins,
Piercing to the marrow of bone.

The Call was always greater
Than one man’s valor or presumption.
Holier than Adam could undertake in rage,
Yet a young David found an “Amen”
Rising within his shepherd- breast,
Shielded by hope and faith
Born of a Savior,
Yet borne into battle
By the foal that carried Him forth.

All battles,
Waged for the souls of men,
Find common ground;
Friend and foe,
Dying side by side.
As grains numbered as the sand,
And the blood,
Bridle high at Armageddon,
Corpses piled and claiming
The best among us,
As generations of spent warriors’ might,
Trust to God
To judge the heart of every man,
And wear his colors in His raiment.

Memories, born as festering wounds,
Or toughened scars,
Mark the man and record the Passion.
No jot or tiddle forgotten,
Fingered on the ground,
Condemning only the Accurser.

Angels minister the balm of Gilead
As the dead live again,
And the living love
Through the Darkness.
Mended hearts,
Held to a measure,
Weighed on scales of Mercy.
Are blessed.
None forgotten,
All forgiven.

How long? How long?
Martyrs witness the passion of the warrior,
And place merited crown,
And victor’s wreathe,
As a new name resounds,
Pronounced by the Mouth of God.

©2012 Joann Nelander

From a treatise on John by Saint Augustine, bishop Christ is the way to the light, the truth, and the life

From a treatise on John by Saint Augustine, bishop
Christ is the way to the light, the truth, and the life

The Lord tells us: I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. In these few words he gives a command and makes a promise. Let us do what he commands so that we may not blush to covet what he promises and to hear him say on the day of judgment: “I laid down certain conditions for obtaining my promises. Have you fulfilled them?” If you say: “What did you command, Lord our God?” he will tell you: “I commanded you to follow me. You asked for advice on how to enter into life. What life, if not the life about which it is written: With you is the fountain of life?”

Let us do now what he commands. Let us follow in the footsteps of the Lord. Let us throw off the chains that prevent us from following him. Who can throw off these shackles without the aid of the one addressed in these words: You have broken my chains? Another psalm says of him: The Lord frees those in chains, the Lord raises up the downcast.

Those who have been freed and raised up follow the light. The light they follow speaks to them: I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness. The Lord gives light to the blind. Brethren, that light shines on us now, for we have had our eyes anointed with the eye-salve of faith. His saliva was mixed with earth to anoint the man born blind. We are of Adam’s stock, blind from our birth; we need him to give us light. He mixed saliva with earth, and so it was prophesied: Truth has sprung up from the earth. He himself has said: I am the way, the truth, and the life.

We shall be in possession of the truth when we see face to face. This is his promise to us. Who would dare to hope for something that God in his goodness did not choose to promise or bestow?
We shall see face to face. The Apostle says: Now I know in part, now obscurely through a mirror, but then face to face. John the apostle says in one of his letters: Dearly beloved, we are now children of God, and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be. We know that when he is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. This is a great promise.

If you love me, follow me. “I do love you,” you protest, “but how do I follow you?” If the Lord your God said to you: “I am the truth and the life,” in your desire for truth, in your love for life, you would certainly ask him to show you the way to reach them. You would say to yourself: “Truth is a great reality, life is a great reality; if only it were possible for my soul to find them!”

Enhanced by Zemanta

Going Up to Jerusalem

O God, let me climb
the Lord’s mountain,
That I may be changed,
Charged, and sent.

Going up to Jerusalem,
May sinful Man
Grab on to the tassels 
Of my garment,
And run with me,
Drawn heavenward
By Your Cross.

On this mountain,
This all hallowed mountain,
From which the bones of Adam,
And the faith of Abraham, cry out,
Rescue,save, deliver,
My Bridegroom comes.

©2011 Joann Nelander

Consolation of Eve

This painting is so consoling, I just have to share it again since Lent brings us closer to our Savior.  He comes to save Fallen Man, and with such a gentle hand.

“Virgin Mary Consoles Eve”


Crayon and pencil by Sr. Grace Remington, OCSO
Copyright 2005, Sisters of the Mississippi Abbey

Mother Eve, waiting long,
Your bones resting in the earth,
At Adam’s side,
From which you were taken,
Waiting, waiting for the Woman.

Sustained in weary life by a Promise.
Enduring the grave,
Counting the centuries,
Waiting for Good News.
The Virgin is with Child. Rejoice!

©2011 Joann Nelander All rights reserved

Days of Darkness – Days of Light

Happy Anniversary!

You registered on WordPress.com 4 years ago!

Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!

Yup, Word Press congratulated me!  Four years today!  To celebrate, I’m re-blogging my first post with a bit of tweeking to fit the season.

Days of Darkness – Days of Light

We just celebrated the feast of the Conversion of St. Paul.  It was he, who said in a letter addressed to the Roman church (Rom.5:20), “Where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more”   Well, here’s the vision, as it was told to me. I want you to picture it so that you feel it with your heart:

You and I squeak in,  passing  through those towering Pearly Gates.  People of all ages overwhelm even our enhanced understanding of the generations descended from Adam and Eve.  We can’t wait to embrace them.  We know them intimately. Instantly, we know their stories.  These are those who lived Salvation history.

“What was it like?”,  we ask over and again?   These, after all, are those who walked dry shod through the walls of water escaping Pharaoh’s chariots.  Here, too,  are the masses who had pressed upon the Christ.  They’d witnessed the manner and miracles of Jesus.  Some has eaten the bread and fish He’d multiplied.  Others admitted that they had shouted, “Crucify Him.”  Others had stood along the way as He pushed on to Calvary. The martyrs from all past centuries were among the most joyful.  They now rejoiced that their blood shed for Christ seeded the proceeding eons to bear fruit in such as we.

For all our eagerness to express our gratitude to them and give glory to God, they pressed the more upon us, for their need is to know our stories.  “Tell us,”  they asked, “how black did the times become when men who pretend to knowledge denied life in the womb.  How dark were the days in which the hearts of mothers died, choosing  to bring forth corpses instead of  living children.  You, who lived with blindness and deafness,  how did you survive?  Like Peter, was it repentance that  re-ignited your flame?   How did you find courage walking  the Valley of the Shadow of Death?  How bright was the Light that brought you home?”

That Light is shining now, on everyone. Who will guide the blind and who will lead the thirsty to the Living Water, if not you and me.