Thursday, March 23, 2017

day 82

Do not fret because of the
         wicked;
   do not be envious of
         wrongdoers, Psalm 37:1

may the image
that remains not
      be the wrecked car
      or knives on the ground,
but
the strangers
   kneeling to comfort
         an unknown sister,
the responders
   leaving their fear
   behind as they run
      to help,
a people
   refusing the easy
   choice to
                  hate.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman
  

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

day 81

And a report about him began to reach every place in the region.  Luke 4:37

too often, the
   report about you
                    reaches
         every region of
         our soul
and
   lays there
         gathering dust
while we
      twitter on
about
            inanities.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

day 80

The LORD said to Moses, "Is the LORD's power limited?   Now you shall see whether my word will come true for you or not."  Numbers 11:23

we continue to believe
   evil is
      inexhaustible,
   fear knows
      no boundaries,
   anger never
      runs out of excuses,
   hate is
      infinite, but
are convinced
         you
have cut back
your hours to
   part-time.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Monday, March 20, 2017

day 79

And the crowds asked him, "What then should we do?" In reply he said to them, "Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise."  Luke 3:10-11

as we give
the coats
      that have waited
      for months in our
   closets to be used
      and put them around
      the weather-worn;
as we take
the food from
      our shelves that
      we bought for
   that recipe we
   lost so long ago,
      and take it
      to the food bank,
may we open
our hearts to
the hope
               you
never hesitate to
   share.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman
     

Sunday, March 19, 2017

day 78

But as for me, when they
         were sick,
   I wore sackcloth;
   I afflicted myself with
         fasting.
I prayed with head bowed
         on my bosom,
    as though I grieved for a
         friend or a brother;
I went about as one who
         laments for a mother,
   bowed down and in
         mourning.   Psalm 35:13-14

we could
         actually
   care for the
      grieving,
         the sick,
      the broken, by
staying by their sides,
      cradling their tears,
   mending their hearts,
but it is usually
            easier
to shed crocodile
      tears and
offer pious platitudes.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman


Saturday, March 18, 2017

day 77

All my bones shall say,
   "O LORD, who is like you?
"You deliver the weak
   from those too strong for
         them,
   the weak and needy from
         those who despoil
         them."  Psalm 35:10

when the rich
      assume the poor
      have everything
            they could ever
         need,
you clean out
all your theology books
from the cluttered den
   to turn it into
   a guest room;
when the politicians
      cut funding for
      meals to those
            who truly
         hunger, as
   they head off
   to their reserved
      tables at
      Chez Arrogance,
you head to
the kitchen, cooking
   and preparing meals
   to serve to your
neighbors.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Friday, March 17, 2017

day 76

The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.  Luke 2:20

we could
      be listening
      to the good news
   sung
         by the most
ignored
      among us, but
we drown out their
   joy,
         grumbling,
'why aren't they
back on the hillside
where they
      belong?'

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Thursday, March 16, 2017

day 75

Depart from evil, and do
         good;
   seek peace, and pursue
         it.  Psalm 34:14

we train for
         months
   for malice's
      marathon, but
can never seem
to find the
         stamina
   to cross the
   street to offer
      peace
to the
         exhausted.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

day 74

O taste and see that the
         LORD is good;  Psalm 34:8a

in the kneading
   of the cat
   alarm each morning;
in the sticky-fingered
   grip of the
   preschoolers;
in the sloppy
   kiss of the
   neighbor's dog;
in the glass of
   cold milk chasing
   down the warm pie;
in the gentle breath
   of love on
   the pillow next to
         me.
i discover your
sweet goodness
      and am
filled.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

day 73

Happy is the nation whose
         God is the LORD,
   the people whom he has
         chosen as his heritage.  Psalm 33:12

happy is God, when
      we do not make
      the LORD a
            a political idol, but
   offer mercy
      to all in
               need
        (without requiring
         multiple IDs and
         proof of misery);
   establish justice
      wherever oppression
      would build
                 barriers;
   welcome the gifts
      offered to us by
         the very ones
         we are taught
              are not
family.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Monday, March 13, 2017

day 72

Say to wisdom, "You are my
         sister,"
   and call insight your
         intimate friend.  Proverbs 7:4

like the sister
   who always listens
   to the deep echoes
         of our hearts;
like the anam cara
   who hears the
   whispers of our
         soul even
      before we do,
                Spirit
shadows our every
   step
      moment
         breath.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Sunday, March 12, 2017

day 71

If any of your kin fall into difficulty and become dependent on you, you shall support them; they shall live with you as though resident aliens.  Leviticus 25:35

if the family from
         Aleppo
   are my cousins;
if the immigrant
         mom
   working 3 jobs
   is my sister;
if the Muslim
         teenager
   is my son;
if the hungry
         girl
   is my daughter,
how
can i turn
   my back on
any
     (or all)
of them?

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Saturday, March 11, 2017

day 70

Do not be like a horse or a
         mule, without
         understanding,
   whose temper must be
         curbed with bit and
         bridle,
   else it will not stay near
         you.  Psalm 32:9

when i snort
      with impatience,
   stomping my feet
   and banging around
      the stall of your
           heart,
rest your hand
upon me, calming
      my spirit with
   the taste of your
            grace, gentling
me with hope's
      caress.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Friday, March 10, 2017

day 69

O how abundant is your
         goodness     Psalm 31:19a

the flower peeking
      through the snow;
the warm sun
      swimming across
      the clear sky;
the gentle breezes
      which scatter leaves;
friends who love us
      no matter, and
   strangers who smile
      unexpectedly,
yet

we grumble at
our
      empty
lives.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Thursday, March 09, 2017

day 68

When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap to the very edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest.  You shall not strip your vineyard bare, or gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the alien: I am the LORD your God.  Leviticus 19:9-10

when we stock
      more food than
      we will ever
                   eat
   before it goes bad,
rather than sharing
with the hungry,
   we glean what little
                  hope
remains for others,
leaving their hearts as
         empty
as their stomachs.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman
    

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

day 67

And Jesus said to them, "You will all become deserters;"  Mark 14:27a

when we
         maroon
   folks on poverty's isle;
when we
         play hooky
   from learning
   the hopes of little children;
when we
         run away
   rather than racing
   to lift up those
   cast aside by power;
when we
         slack off
   from the simple
   task of faithfulness,
you shake your
      head (but
still keep offering
another chance)

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Tuesday, March 07, 2017

day 66

So the disciples set out and went into the city, and found everything as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.  Mark 14:16

if we only trusted,
we could find your
promised gifts
to enable us
   to turn rusted out
   factories into
      training programs;
   to transform empty
   shopping malls into
      hospitals;
   to reimagine closed
   schools as
      memory care centers;
and we could lead
folks (including us)
out of bondage to
            despair.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Monday, March 06, 2017

day 65

"But be alert; I have already told you everything."  Mark 13:23

we keep wanting
      to leap ahead
   in the story to
      find out how it
   will end, forgetting
that the final Word
      was written
long before
   'in the beginning'
was penned.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Sunday, March 05, 2017

day 64

When you walk, they will
         lead you;
   when you lie down, they
         watch over you;
   and when you awake,
         they will talk with
         you.  Proverbs 6:22

with each step, may
      i place my foot
      in the imprint left
      by compassion
   following it to care
         for others;
in the silent hours of
the night, may
      i curl up
      in hope's
   lap;
in the morning, may
      wonder and joy
   leap into my bed
         yelling, 'get up,
   sleepyhead! it's a new
day!'

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Saturday, March 04, 2017

day 63

But seeing their hypocrisy, he said to them, "Why are you putting me to the test?"  Mark 12:15b

as long as
         we
   keep putting
         you
   to the test,
         we
can keep failing
         you,
   and not have
   to answer any
of
         your
(more difficult)
   questions

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Friday, March 03, 2017

day 62

Again they came to Jerusalem.  Mark 11:27

however
many times it takes,
      you will
   continue to
come into our
      fears, our
   worries, our
      resistance, until
we finally see
you for who you
are,
      the One
   we need
again and
again

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Thursday, March 02, 2017

day 61

To you, O LORD, I call;
   my rock, do not refuse to
         hear me,
for if you are silent to me,
   I shall be like those who go
         down to the Pit.  Psalm 28:1

just a
         word:
   of grace,
         or hope;
   maybe love
         or even
      reprimand,
can keep me
         from
falling into that
      mess
where I can
never find my
   way out (on
my own)

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

day 60

a heart that devises wicked
         plans,
   feet that hurry to run to
         evil, Proverbs 6:18

we hope
you will replace the
   grudge positioning system
lodged in our
      hearts which
   recalculates us until
   we turn down
          the wrong roads
with your grace
      so
   we can finally
   find our way
back to you.

(c) 2017 Thom M. Shuman