Thursday, March 22, 2007

The Wood of One Cross 

Like the beat of a heart,
pounding, pounding,
like the beat of a drum
as an army moves out,
like the pain of a wound
throbbing, throbbing,
The whole weight of sin
on the wood of one cross.

How high we pile it,
higher and higher,
the guilt load, the sorrow
on the weight of His head,
Each act of darkness,
blacker and blacker,
The whole weight of sin
on the wood of one cross.

Each wrong against brother,
the anger, the anger,
The coldhearted choosing
the wrong over right,
Each trust we've betrayed,
how bitter, how bitter,
The whole weight of sin
on the wood of one cross.

He carried it all,
Each wrongness, each wrongness
He bore it for us,
God With Us, for love,
Each black-hearted deed,
To save us, to save us,
The whole weight of sin
on the wood of one cross.

O help us to love,
O Jesus, O Jesus,
To end the great weight
we pour on your head,
To see the great love
Poured on us, poured on us,
From the gift that you gave
on the wood of one cross.

Susan E. Stone, 2007

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Wednesday, March 21, 2007


A world gone mad when light is dark
when dark is renamed light,
and aching hearts weep bitterly
for their lost ones in the night.
Their cries reach up to Heaven's gate,
Never out of sight
While those in power twiddle.

When the weak and the bitter rule
And nothing new is done
Except to keep on plowing through
The same old futile run,
Aching hearts weep bitterly
As injustice is all that is done
While those in power twiddle.

Good is called bad these days
Out of some weird sense of fair,
And evil demands we tolerate,
With an angry, bitter stare,
Madonna weeps in church and shrine,
Though others seem not to care,
While those in power twiddle.

The world goes mad with Cain's old sin,
Brother against brother,
God watches as we use his name
To hammer one another,
The time to reap the whirlwind nears
For the tears hate cannot smother
While those in power twiddle.

Susan E. Stone, 2007

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Forgive us Lord,
for speaking hate and
acting as if humor excuses it.

Forgive us, Lord,
for acting as if words we spin
make the reality,
excusing all wrongdoing.

Forgive us, Lord,
For acting as if our personal wishes
are all that we need
do decide if something's right
or horridly wrong.

Forgive us of being so eager
to make a monster of the person
who does not agree with us.

Forgive us in our refusal
to see each and every one on earth
as created by God,
and thus worthy of consideration.

Forgive us in turning you into a clown,
a puppet we can use to get our way.

Forgive us for using you as a weapon
to turn hardhearted away from our brothers,
to strike the other cheek
as if in holy retribution.

Help us cling to your light,
even as the world has us grasped by the ankles,
pulling us into that cesspool of night.


Susan E. Stone, 2007


Monday, March 19, 2007

How Quick 

How quick we are to criticize,
How quick we are to hate,
How easy it's to strike and hurt,
Plot and retaliate.

But He knelt in the garden
In agony to pray,
To free us from the pain and hurt
The fruit of Cain's dark way.

How quick we are to doubt Him,
to justify our wants,
to find a reason to strike out,
Harsh words and angry taunts.

But He bore taunts to free us,
A crown of piercing thorn,
The harsh bite of the burning whip
To help us be reborn.

How quick we turn away from Him
For what a heart of darkness brings,
Power, lust, and anger
We choose as finer things.

But He let them lie about Him,
Condemn Him for no wrong,
So that He might open up the door
To save us from night's song.

How quick we lie about Him,
To weaken his bright light,
To use Him as a reason
To make our wrong our right.

But for us He took that heavy cross,
And walked that last hard road,
To save us from our hurting wounds,
Sin's dark and heavy load.

O open up our cold, hard hearts
And see you standing there,
The hand outstretched and pierced for us,
The depth of love and care.

O let us feel your loving touch,
And know the wrong we do,
And falling on our knees, O Lord,
Open up to you.

Forgive us, Lord, for loving dark,
Then crying from its pain,
O let us see the truth we've wrought,
The dark that is our stain.

O may we be as quick, O Lord,
To turn our hearts to you.
Guide us to your morning light,
Our hope, reborn, anew.

Susan E. Stone, 2007

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Sunday, March 18, 2007

The Fairest Rose 

The fairest rose in His garden
A small maiden in the spring of her days,
A small maiden with a heart bright as summer,
Her answer was then and always:

"Be it done to me according to your word."

A woman who watched Him grow tall,
Her Son, the Father's gift to mankind
She knew why he came and was certain
That the right way was easy to find:

"Do whatever He tells you."

She gave birth to him while heaven witnessed,
And now she stood while watching him die.
This Son, like no other before Him-
The sword piercing her heart with his sigh.

"Woman, behold your son."

The fairest rose in all of His garden
When her bloom on earth was complete
And her last breath was taken on earth
He came and lifted her up on her feet.

"And a great portent appeared in heaven,
a woman clothed with the sun,
with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a crown of twelve stars."

Susan E. Stone, 2007


Have Mercy 

Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God,
who emptied yourself out to become our Emmanuel,
who walked our dust,
felt our pain,
have mercy on us.
Forgive us of our rage.

Jesus Christ, Son of God and son of Mary,
Who walked this earth,
suffered the hurts that life thrusts upon us,
the slings of undeserved wrongs,
have mercy on us.
Forgive us our desire to hurt as we are hurt.

Susan E. Stone, 2007

Jesus Christ, who wept tears of blood in the garden of olives,
wrapped in the shadows of night,
the shadows of others' sin,
grieving under the weight of what evil man can do,
grieving under the weight of doing the Father's will,
have mercy on us.
Forgive us our desire to do as we would do, no matter the cost.

Jesus Christ, who bore stripes that we might be healed,
mocked and crowned with thorns
as an amusement for the hard men who kept you captive
Forgive us our coldheartedness at the sight of our brother in need.
Have mercy on us.

Jesus Christ, who was accused unjustly before the High Priest,
condemned in an unfair trial,
turned over to those who would kill you as a pawn,
Forgive us our eager willingness to be unjust, unmerciful.
Have mercy on us.

Jesus Christ, executed for no wrongs of your own,
but who died willingly to save us all,
the lost sheep of your flock,
Forgive us our ungratitude.
Have mercy on us.

O Lord, in the midnight, whisper to our hearts
the truth of a love like no other,
may the scales fall from our eyes,
and bring us to true contrition,
knowledge of what we are,
what we are worth,
and what you would have us to be,
and may we, in response learn to love
in mercy, gentleness and humility
this day and always, Amen.

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