Carry Me

You have carried me on Your shoulder.

I am that wound that pained You greatly.

Carry me into my future,

As You carried Your Cross.

I know I hurt;

I can feel it myself.

 

Now in heaven, You are free from pain,

Except for that, which You suffer,

In the mystery of Your Church on earth,

Except for that, which You suffer in me,

For love of me, for love of Your Cross.

I am the cross You lovingly still bear.

 

© 2011 Joann Nelander

All rights reserved

That Man, Job

That man, Job,
That sad man, Job,
That mad man, Job,
That angry man,
That suffering and troubled soul,
Behold my man, Job.

Have we not all been there?
Why, O Lord?
Am I not well-meaning,
One of the good guys,
A nice person?

Why must the Cross
Touch my life?
Am I not
Like a son to You?

With these words,
He  made me see,
"You are, indeed,
Like a Son to Me."

LIFTED UP, I AM DRAWN

Lifted up,
You hang above the world.
Your outstretched arms
Measure the breath of Your Love.

How great the distance between us,
Yet, greater still,
Your unquenchable thirst for me.

I am a child, a lowly one,
Troubling you yet and always.
I tug at the hem of Your garment
While You tug at my heart.

Lord of my hopes,
Lord of my longing,
Lord of my sorrows,
Lord of my weeping,
Ruler of all Time and Space,
You draw me to an Eternity in Your Embrace.

©2014 Joann Nelander

That Man, Job

That man, Job,
That sad man, Job,
That mad man, Job,
That angry man,
That suffering and troubled soul,
Behold my man, Job.

Have we not all been there?
Why, O Lord?
Am I not well meaning,
One of the good guys,
A nice person?

Why must the Cross
Touch my life?
Am I not
Like a son to You?

With these words,
He  made me see,
"You are, indeed,
Like a Son to Me."

Lifted Up, I Am Drawn

Lifted up,

You hang above the world.

Your outstretched arms

Measure the breath of Your Love.

 

How great the distance between us,

Yet, greater still,

Your unquenchable thirst for me.

 

I am a child, a lowly one,

Troubling you yet and always.

I tug at the hem of Your garment

While You tug at my heart.

 

Lord of my hopes,

Lord of my longing,

Lord of my sorrows,

Lord of my weeping,

Ruler of all Time and Space,

You draw me to an Eternity in Your Embrace.

©2014 Joann Nelander

Lifted Up, I Am Drawn

Lifted up,

You hang above the world.

Your outstretched arms

Measure the breath of Your Love.

 

How great the distance between us,

Yet, greater still,

Your unquenchable thirst for me.

 

I am a child, a lowly one,

Troubling you yet and always.

I tug at the hem of Your garment

While You tug at my heart.

 

Lord of my hopes,

Lord of my longing,

Lord of my sorrows,

Lord of my weeping,

Ruler of all Time and Space,

You draw me to an Eternity in Your Embrace.

 

©2014 Joann Nelander

Why does God let us suffer?

You Looked Down

You looked down
From Your Cross
To behold faithfulness.
There stood Your Mother.

You beheld her look of grief,
Her suffering Your pain.
You wed it
To Your Own,
Presenting all
Before Our Father’s holy throne.

© 2013 Joann Nelander

That Man, Job

That man, Job,
That sad man, Job,
That mad man, Job,
That angry man,
That suffering and troubled soul,
Behold my man, Job.

Have we not all been there?
Why, O Lord?
Am I not well meaning,
One of the good guys,
A nice person?

Why must the Cross
Touch my life?
Am I not
Like a son to You?

With these words,
He made me see,
“You are, indeed,
Like a Son to Me.”

The Church Conformed to Your Passion

Jesus Passions, Holy Monastery of Stavronikita...

Image via Wikipedia

Psalm-prayer for this day from the Office of Readings:

Lord Jesus, you foretold that we would share in the persecutions that brought you to a violent death. The Church formed at the cost of your precious blood is even now conformed to your Passion; may it be transformed, now and eternally, by the power of your resurrection.

Mirror of Love

From the Mirror of Love by Saint Aelred, abbot

Christ, the model of brotherly love

The perfection of brotherly love lies in the love of one’s enemies. We can find no greater inspiration for this than grateful remembrance of the wonderful patience of Christ. He who is more fair than all the sons of men offered his fair face to be spat upon by sinful men; he allowed those eyes that rule the universe to be blindfolded by wicked men; he bared his back to the scourges; he submitted that head which strikes terror in principalities and powers to the sharpness of the thorns; he gave himself up to be mocked and reviled, and at the end endured the cross, the nails, the lance, the gall, the vinegar, remaining always gentle, meek and full of peace.

In short, he was led like a sheep to the slaughter, and like a lamb before the shearers he kept silent, and did not open his mouth.

Who could listen to that wonderful prayer, so full of warmth, of love, of unshakeable serenity”Father, forgive them” and hesitate to embrace his enemies with overflowing love? Father, he says, forgive them. Is any gentleness, any love, lacking in this prayer?

Yet he put into it something more. It was not enough to pray for them: he wanted also to make excuses for them. Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing. They are great sinners, yes, but they have little judgment; therefore, Father, forgive them. They are nailing me to the cross, but they do not know who it is that they are nailing to the cross: if they had known, they would never have crucified the Lord of glory; therefore, Father, forgive them. They think it is a lawbreaker, an impostor claiming to be God, a seducer of the people. I have hidden my face from them, and they do not recognize my glory; therefore, Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.

If someone wishes to love himself he must not allow himself to be corrupted by indulging his sinful nature. If he wishes to resist the promptings of his sinful nature he must enlarge the whole horizon of his love to contemplate the loving gentleness of the humanity of the Lord. Further, if he wishes to savor the joy of brotherly love with greater perfection and delight, he must extend even to his enemies the embrace of true love.

But if he wishes to prevent this fire of divine love from growing cold because of injuries received, let him keep the eyes of his soul always fixed on the serene patience of his beloved Lord and Savior.

Meditation from Br. Lawrence of the Resurrection

Spiritual Maxims, Page 36

The holiest, most ordinary, and most necessary practice of the spiritual life is that of the presence of God. It is to take delight in and become accustomed to His divine company, speaking humbly and conversing lovingly with Him all the time, at every moment, without rule or measure, especially in times of temptation, suffering, aridity, weariness, even infidelity and sin. We must continually apply ourselves, so that all our actions, without exception, become a kind of brief conversation with God, not in a contrived manner, but coming from the purity and simplicity of our hearts.

That They May Be One, Father

As the 14th day of Lent draws to a close, Nelson shares these thoughts from the letter of Patriarch Gregorios III of Antioch (Melkite) for  Lent that I’m passing on:

“Indeed, if the cross, with all that it represents, with all that it signifies, symbolises and indicates, of sufferings, sicknesses, disasters, various afflictions, catastrophes, pains and injuries to which all people are subject, if the cross is a constituent reality of all human life, there is an obligation for all people, like Jesus, to carry the cross together, in order to disburden the one charged with it and together to bear it with love and solidarity.  In this letter, I am urging my faithful sons and daughters of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church in the Arab world and throughout the world to be in solidarity with each other and stand shoulder to shoulder with their brethren, friends, neighbours and fellow-citizens to bear the cross together on the way of the cross, especially during these days of Great Lent on our common spiritual Lenten way towards the Feast and the joy of the glorious Resurrection.”

I pray that all Christians may be one and bear faithful witness to the One who is all in all.