Thursday, January 5, 2012

Wandered into the Party

At 10:00 AM you come
clean, dressed, polished up
and greet more like you –
clean as a whistle on the outside.

You have assembled looking for something in the someone who gives.

Very earnest mothers care about
the daily feeding of their
sheep children,
kept clean as a whistle on the inside.

Two door watchers survey and direct
a healthy dose of verbal affirmation
to your weekly seat.

And suddenly
the running film of your life outside
is freeze-framed
an hour or two to allow for
an injection
of something familiar to coat
the sore place on the sole of your foot
where you were running
and the blistered palm of your hand
where you were hanging
as if your life depended on it,

and it did
but you checked the week at the door
like a hat or a coat
and wandered into the party.


  1. Sounds like church to me. People come looking for something to relieve their pain, but leave empty handed. They can't take off the mask long enough to be honest with themselves and God. And no one at church knows how to help them either or really wants to get involved with their problems. People need help, but they are too embarrassed to admit it. So the gathering where they should be able to get healed is just a place to sing songs, shake hands and smile. At some parties the food being served to the people is not that good either. Or am I just a cynical, christian counselor who recognizes the unmet needs of the body of Christ?

  2. I think that you, Pat, are a tender hearted woman.
    I wrote this some years ago after such experiences. I hope I'm on the other side of sarcastic and hurt now, but I thought it still relevant to today.
    Thanks for your comments.

  3. Most churches today are still not meeting the needs of the people who support it. So this problem is still relevant today. It is not the spiritual clinic it needs to be, just a social organization with a common interest in the Lord; like a country club, a place to have a party.

  4. To give balance to my lament above, I want to say how much I do appreciate all the devoted, spiritual leaders in my life who tried to provide Godly oversight, inspired preaching/teaching, discipleship, Spirit-led worship and governmental administration. Thank you for answering the call and giving it your best efforts. It is a difficult and sacrificial place of service.

  5. Yes - there are certainly many of those dedicated people. Wonderful servants with great integrity. Many, many different people in this world - and the wheat and the tares which Jesus said would grow together. Matthew 13:29-30 - "No,' he answered, 'because while you are pulling the weeds, you may root up the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.' " I get conflicted sometimes in my writing because I want to be true to what it is I want to say without being unbalanced, yet remaining true to the inspiration to write it down at all, as an art.