A Drop in the Ocean

A drop in the ocean of the Lord,
Minuscule,
Tear-sized,
Hardly felt upon the cheek,
Brushed away
To fall into the river of Your love.

Once alone,
Barely a something,
Really “a nothing”,
A lonely singularity,
But felt upon a Heart.

The tears of others,
Conjoined,
Confusion,
Profusion,
Holy joy in headlong rush,
Whisked over rock and rubble,
Carried by unseen arms,
Pressed on
By force of a Holy Will.

Cascades’ roar arousing fear,
Bewilderment,
Mingled vigor,
Hope rises to the surface
And churns the deep.

Fate creates a splash
And a rivulet of escape,
An instant of choice,
Puddle or precipice?

I hang upon a prayer,
Borne aloft in new fall,
Truly free fall,
Onto the rushing stream,
And weeping humanity prevails.

One drop,
Now millions,
Energy,
Direction,
Momentum,
Kinetic kaleidoscope,
Mirroring Divine power.

The tide of many waters,
Convergence,
At the edge,
And then the fall,
Not like the first,
In free abandonment.

One drop,
Transformed by divine law,
Holy Obedience.
Tumultuous streams
Carve the land without,
And all within.

Fertile flood of holy tears,
Serve now His Plan,
A drop in the ocean of God.

Copyright 2014 Joann Nelander

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Joann Nelander
lionessblog.com

Effects of Divine Love

My Imitation of Christ by Thomas a’ Kempis

Book Three-Fifth Chapter

The Wonderful Effect of Divine Love

The Disciple:

I BLESS You, O heavenly Father, Father of my Lord Jesus Christ, for having condescended to remember me, a poor creature. Thanks to You, O Father of mercies, God of all consolation, Who with Your comfort sometimes refresh me, who am not worthy of it. I bless You always and glorify You with Your only-begotten Son and the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete, forever and ever. Ah, Lord God, my holy Lover, when You come into my heart, all that is within me will rejoice. You are my glory and the exultation of my heart. You are my hope and refuge in the day of my tribulation. But because my love is as yet weak and my virtue imperfect, I must be strengthened and comforted by You. Visit me often, therefore, and teach me Your holy discipline. Free me from evil passions and cleanse my heart of all disorderly affection so that, healed and purified within, I may be fit to love, strong to suffer, and firm to persevere. Love is an excellent thing, a very great blessing, indeed. It makes every difficulty easy, and bears all wrongs with equanimity. For it bears a burden without being weighted and renders sweet all that is bitter. The noble love of Jesus spurs to great deeds and excites longing for that which is more perfect. Love tends upward; it will not be held down by anything low. Love wishes to be free and estranged from all worldly affections, lest its inward sight be obstructed, lest it be entangled in any temporal interest and overcome by adversity. Nothing is sweeter than love, nothing stronger or higher or wider; nothing is more pleasant, nothing fuller, and nothing better in heaven or on earth, for love is born of God and cannot rest except in God, Who is above all created things. One who is in love flies, runs, and rejoices; he is free, not bound. He gives all for all and possesses all in all, because he rests in the one sovereign Good, Who is above all things, and from Whom every good flows and proceeds. He does not look to the gift but turns himself above all gifts to the Giver. Love often knows no limits but overflows all bounds. Love feels no burden, thinks nothing of troubles, attempts more than it is able, and does not plead impossibility, because it believes that it may and can do all things. For this reason, it is able to do all, performing and effecting much where he who does not love fails and falls. Love is watchful. Sleeping, it does not slumber. Wearied, it is not tired. Pressed, it is not straitened. Alarmed, it is not confused, but like a living flame, a burning torch, it forces its way upward and passes unharmed through every obstacle. If a man loves, he will know the sound of this voice. For this warm affection of soul is a loud voice crying in the ears of God, and it says: “My God, my love, You are all mine and I am all Yours. Give me an increase of love, that I may learn to taste with the inward lips of my heart how sweet it is to love, how sweet to be dissolved in love and bathe in it. Let me be rapt in love. Let me rise above self in great fervor and wonder. Let me sing the hymn of love, and let me follow You, my Love, to the heights. Let my soul exhaust itself in praising You, rejoicing out of love. Let me love You more than myself, and let me not love myself except for Your sake. In You let me love all those who truly love You, as the law of love, which shines forth from You, commands.” Love is swift, sincere, kind, pleasant, and delightful. Love is strong, patient and faithful, prudent, long-suffering, and manly. Love is never self-seeking, for in whatever a person seeks himself there he falls from love. Love is circumspect, humble, and upright. It is neither soft nor light, nor intent upon vain things. It is sober and chaste, firm and quiet, guarded in all the senses. Love is subject and obedient to superiors. It is mean and contemptible in its own eyes, devoted and thankful to God; always trusting and hoping in Him even when He is distasteful to it, for there is no living in love without sorrow. He who is not ready to suffer all things and to stand resigned to the will of the Beloved is not worthy to be called a lover. A lover must embrace willingly all that is difficult and bitter for the sake of the Beloved, and he should not turn away from Him because of adversities.

Benediction

I reach for You in the night,
On my bed, desiring.
Knowing You present in the darkness,
Watching, loving, desiring me.

As I look to You,
My desire grows,
Believing I can attain You,
You, Who are beyond me of myself,
An impossibility on my own,
Yet I invite and hope, believing.

Presuming not the power of myself,
But wholly choosing You,
My Honored Guest, my Holy Quest
I beg Your residence eternal and supreme.

Prepare me for the Day
Of Your Perfect and Perpetual Presence,
When faith and hope are fed and satisfied
At the Banquet of Abundance.

Rejoicing and hungry no more,
Possessed and possessing You,
The end of my prayer,
Forever new ,
Forever beginning ,
Forever Day,
In the Eternal Now,
Then to live Life and Love,
Forever Knowing.

© 2016 Joann Nelander

God on the Horizon

Lord, I rejoice to hear Your Voice
Echoing in my soul.
Through Your Word,
I have come to recognize that Voice
Even amidst the chaos of the world.

“Come to Me”
“Do not be afraid”
“Stand firm”
“Your God is in your midst. ”

Heaven sings “My Lord” on the horizon.
Spanning the day with Your herald,
Coming forth with the
dawn,
His notes color the firmament
In a symphony of splendor.
Playing with hues
As with a pipe organ,
He pulls out the stops in promise,
Until he captures the morn and subdued it.

Making it His own
In the mystery of You, O Lord.
He whispers to listening hearts,
“You are the Light of the world”

With eventide He strides
As Day’s work done.
Then God calls home the Sun.
But not without a closing hoorah.
As over hill and dale,
He paints for fun,
And angelic artists
Shout His blazing Glory.

All put to bed
‘Neathe a cloak of many colors,
Finally, dimming their voices
In lullabies of peace
To sleep in childlike slumber,
Save for He, Who slumbers not.

God on the horizon,
Sun to sun,
Labor swallowed up in trust,
To await His Coming
In both darkness and the dawn,
All my life long.

©2012 Joann Nelander
All rights reserved

God on the Horizon

Lord, I rejoice to hear Your Voice
Echoing in my soul.
Through Your Word,
I have come to recognize that Voice
Even amidst the chaos of the world.

“Come to Me”
“Do not be afraid”
“Stand firm”
“Your God is in your midst. ”

Heaven sings “My Lord” on the horizon.
Spanning the day with Your herald,
Coming forth with the
dawn,
His notes color the firmament
In a symphony of splendor.
Playing with hues
As with a pipe organ,
He pulls out the stops in promise,
Until he captures the morn and subdued it.

Making it His own
In the mystery of You, O Lord.
He whispers to listening hearts,
“You are the Light of the world”

With eventide He strides
As Day’s work done.
Then God calls home the Sun.
But not without a closing hoorah.
As over hill and dale,
He paints for fun,
And angelic artists
Shout His blazing Glory.

All put to bed
‘Neathe a cloak of many colors,
Finally, dimming their voices
In lullabies of peace
To sleep in childlike slumber,
Save for He, Who slumbers not.

God on the horizon,
Sun to sun,
Labor swallowed up in trust,
To await His Coming
In both darkness and the dawn,
All my life long.

©2012 Joann Nelander
All rights reserved

God on the Horizon

Lord, I rejoice to hear Your Voice
Echoing in my soul.
Through Your Word,
I have come to recognize that Voice
Even amidst the chaos of the world.

“Come to Me”
“Do not be afraid”
“Stand firm”
“Your God is in your midst. ”

Heaven sings “My Lord” on the horizon.
Spanning the day with Your herald,
Coming forth with the
dawn,
His notes color the firmament
In a symphony of splendor.
Playing with hues
As with a pipe organ,
He pulls out the stops in promise,
Until he captures the morn and subdued it.

Making it His own
In the mystery of You, O Lord.
He whispers to listening hearts,
“You are the Light of the world”

With eventide He strides
As Day’s work done.
Then God calls home the Sun.
But not without a closing hoorah.
As over hill and dale,
He paints for fun,
And angelic artists
Shout His blazing Glory.

All put to bed
‘Neathe a cloak of many colors,
Finally, dimming their voices
In lullabies of peace
To sleep in childlike slumber,
Save for He, Who slumbers not.

God on the horizon,
Sun to sun,
Labor swallowed up in trust,
To await His Coming
In both darkness and the dawn,
All my life long.

©2012 Joann Nelander
All rights reserved