Friday, March 24, 2006

Faith: Words To Action

I believe in all that has never yet been spoken.
I want to free what waits within me
so that what no one has dared to wish for

may for once spring clear
without my contriving.

If this is arrogant, God, forgive me,
but this is what I need to say.
May what I do flow from me like a river,
no forcing and no holding back,
the way it is with children.

Then in these swelling and ebbing currents,
these deepening tides moving out, returning,
I will sing you as no one ever has,

streaming through widening channels
into the open sea.

In three brief, "intense periods of happiness" between 1899 and 1903 Rainer Maria Rilke wrote The Book of Hours.

The poem above Ich glaube an Alles noch nie Gesagte (I believe in all not yet said) belongs to that collection. Translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy the volume is subtitled Love Poems To God.

Rilke wrote as a result of "inner dictations" or words that came to him and "struck him with their force and persistence."

Certainly the above poem resonates with anyone who has a desire to do what has never been dared before in an effort to create peace.

The Christian Peacemakers Teams are, most certainly, divinely guided. Imagine what we could do if everyone who calls him or herself a Christian stood up - like them - against war. Imagine if each one of us was willing - like the Peacemakers - to put his or her body in the line of danger not to hold a gun and kill others, but in order to block bullets from hitting the bodies of others.

This is what Jesus would do today. He would lead us all to form a human wall between those with guns and those without and would say: "Okay. We're unarmed. We are your brothers and sisters. We stand for love and peace. Will you shoot us?"

Maybe those with the guns would. But while an army can kill one person or 10, 100, even a 1000 people, it cannot destroy us all when we stand together. If we Christians - millions of us - showed up together and put our lives on the line for peace and to protect others, things would change.

We would surely then be singing a praise of love to Christ in a way that no one ever has. And, through us, God would accomplish miracles.

All that is within me, bless his holy name. Psalms 103:1

I will very gladly spend and be spent for you. 2 Corinthians 12:15

They slay the widow and the stranger, and the murder the fatherless. Psalms 94:6

Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Mark 8:34

I beseach you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Romans 12:1

The work of righteous shall be peace. Isaiah 32:17


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