I See You Through Tears

I see You through tears,
Cascading as a cleansing waterfall,
Washing away,
And carrying away,
The deeds and impurities
Of the Old Man.

Virginal flesh as gift,
Are my arraignment.
Looking in the mirror,
I see me with my eyes,
But in faith,
I see You.

The taint and stain of Sin,
The mocking of the Accuser,
Can not touch me.
Here in Your arms,
Under Your Mantle.
I find rest.

Tent with me.
Cover me.
Grace me,
And transform me,
As a land restored
And fertile .

Let me hear the roar
Of the cleansing waterfall.
Drown out
With a holy whisper,
The remembrance of Egypt,
And the shame of slavery.

My tears remind me
Of the interior bath,
And healing balm,
The gracious gift of Your work
By Your Presence,
And Your ministries.

River of Life,
I have eyes only for You.
You carry me,
And sweep along with me,
Making holy,
All those I hold dear.

Copyright 2014 Joann Nelander

I Watched a Friend at Prayer

I watched a friend at prayer.
From the moment her eyes
Met Yours on the Cross,
She was enraptured.

What is it that passes between like souls?
The gulf between You, God,
And Your creature is unfathomable,
Yet, Your love spans the distance and dissimilarity
With the intimacy of a mother
Suckling her infant,
All giving, all gift and all grace.

I watched my friend at prayer.
The world about her changed.
A holy space surrounded her,
As angels hurried to and fro,
Now bowing, now prostrate, now adoring.

All prayer unites,
As earth receives its Savior-God,
As Man exercises dominion,
Freed from Sin and chains.

Angels in swift flight,
Aloft on mission-wings ,
Now ascending,
Now descending.

Peace on earth
To men of good will,
As Time and Eternity kiss,
Love knowing no distance.

I watched my friend at prayer,
As her prayer became my prayer,
You drawing all to Yourself.
Draw me now,
And all will in turn
Run after the odor of Your ointments.

 ©2011 Joann Nelander

Weaned Child

I am the weaned child,
Upon Your knee.
Forgetful of time,
I curl Your hair about my fingers,
And tug at Your heartstrings.

My toys, the shiny objects of yesterday,
Lie by the stairs,
By which I began my ascent to You.

Comfort me.
Cuddle me.
Tickle me.

You spend Your universe,
As You had always planned,
Delighting one so small,
The least of the Children of Man.

© 2012 Joann Nelander

O Splendid Truth, Our Father

Jesus, You did not say,
“Pretend My Father
Is your father.”
Or, “Imagine, if my Father
Were your father.”

No! His prayer revealed
God as our Father.
What Love!
What Mystery!
What Splendid Truth!

©2012 Joann Nelander

People of Praise

Your people praise you, O Lord.
As points of light,
Scattered about
The surface of the Earth.
Together with angelic choirs,
That dot the firmament,
Your children sing.

With fish, and bird,
With rivers and seas,
With mountains,
And heavenly heights,
Creation sings in chorus,
Affirmation,
Acclamation,
And affection,
In sanctifying hosannas,
That fall as bountiful rain,
To water man and beast
With fruitful exaltation,
Multiplying our delight,
As we magnify our God.

We are your mothers,
Fathers, sisters,
Brothers, friends
Of Your fold,
Returning praise,
And worship due
The Most High Lord
Of all creation.
In Your Light we
Become Your Light.

© 2012 Joann Nelander

Father Forever

“Father forgive them they know not what they do.”

Cords of sorrow draw me.
I am witness to the plight,
Man become beast,
Without wisdom or wit,
Licking his own blood,
Hungry, harrowed,
Stunned in horror.

The knots of revenge entangle,
Cry for evermore blood,
Ever more abasement,
Ever more widows,
Ever more orphans,
Ever more refuse and waste.

A crying child becomes hundreds,
Then thousands,
Then millions,
Left to wander,
Left to dissipate and hate.

Vengeance is sweeter than food,
To one who chooses to live
Without Love,
Without Light,
Without the Holy and the True,
For such is the abode of Sin,
And many the roads
Leading to its gate.

Bestial brutality,
Raging insanity,
Now reigns the malignant.
The disconsolate refuse all solace,
Wounds of the heart,
Wounds of the mind,
Wounds of the body of Man.

Look to the high mountain,
Eyes to the heavens,
Wake the long dead,
Who await the promised Banquet,
Those, who now know,
They are one Family of Man,
Divested of tribal allegiance,
Awaiting the One,
And coming, King.

Offer a sacrifice of prayer.
Pour forth the balm of Gilead.
Speak, in the tongue of angels,
The comfort of peoples,
Hope in the Darkness.

Humanity’s ties are stronger than its sins,
More numerous than the cords
That draw it down in the Dark Night.
For its One God
Is Father Forever.