12072017

You will ask: what are the horrors of patriotism?

I watched as blood ran down the loosely lined streets—soft billows of hate still rising

each staking their claim, each proclaiming their repugnant holiness, sinew stuck between their teeth

how quaint, your holy city, filled with the corpses of each other, each the others enemy

how endearing & sweet, I can smell the refuse of Gehenna burning, the valley churning as you pillage for another body to burn

how holy. how holy.

what is holier than all the holy wars. what is more joyous than to wrap our gifts in guts—all pounded out & tenderized, a small slip of vein bowed up around the bomb.

Oh, how long is this war.

How often I’ve felt the bones beneath me, crunching, giving way to another layer of death.

Patriotism & religion. They sour my soul. They mark themselves as unholy despite their blood-lust claims.

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What Cold Days But Warm Hearts Look Like…

So, it’s a rare thing that most of our Service group gets a picture together, but here we are. My oldest is the only publisher missing I believe.

Sunday service is always really good. Most of us have at very least doorstep Bible studies. My best progressive call is with a woman about my age, military family & so sweet. Four kids, all nearly grown and when I was done our little study this week, I offered her the Watchtower on the greatest gift & asked her what gift she was most thankful for. Her reply was sincere— that her whole family would be home for Christmas, her eldest is in basic training in Ontario. I can only imagine the trepidation she feels knowing he will be serving in the military soon.

Our hall now has Hindi North associating with our congregation, which actually address four Indian languages, & Arabic is with one of the other congregations in the hall.

I have found, most people in our territory have become far more receptive to wanting to know what the Bible teaches recently. Everyone seems to have found this. People seem to enjoy hearing good news & having their questions about world conditions & what the Bible gives as a hope for the future answered. Despite the cold yesterday, we had great conversations with all the people we got home. Everyone. How great is that?!

The spiritual food being provided in huge amounts—that is proof of God’s true organization at work on earth. Combine it with the unity & love of our brotherhood regardless of racial, national or lingual background—I am so thankful to be a part of this global preaching work alongside the brothers & sisters.

Forgotten

and so that intense quiet of snow upon snow has consumed

both light & sound, already, the world in all its greenery

has become some fictitious memory boasted about by strange bullies & beasts

I am washed down, with this tin taste of blood in my lungs, the cold only biting with small teeth

how often have I run, lungs bursting, drowning, here in the cold

what wild consumptions of ice & black & how peculiar this sky, singing strange horrors in the night

all things are whimpering at the door, humming, or howling…or screaming

slowly light attempted its feeble rise, only to fall, in breaths of blood & flicker

Ask me what I know? How does the North keep me alive inside it’s deathly embrace?

How much blood has it frozen, blued, crusted in the veins of my fingers & toes & most definitely my heart?

How lovely is the frozen face & the water eyes of winter as they realize…

I once heard, rumours of soft sand & high held sun & ocean waves & leaves that never fall; of trees that do not stand, thin stark & white, glimmering rig immortally in the night

But here, this sway of stiff limbs & creaking bows & strange songs slithering along the snow, this, this is all I know. It is hum-drumming through these frozen wastelands—where my body barely breathes, only puffs, clouds of haze & glow.

“Men will be…fierce…”

Many things during these last days weigh us all down. There are the things we resign ourselves to–natural disasters, illness, things that feel we can have no effect on their existence & the toll they demand. 

But the shootings–they’re a true devastation of a different sort. They are slowly eroding belief in the goodness of fellow man. There is a coldness in their wake. That one individual can create so much heartbreak, so much terror. 

I think that people handle these news reports in one of two ways. They either ostrich or they glare at it as they would an eclipse, dangerously agonizing over it. There feels to me there is no in between. You must either feel it, or you must numb yourself, no doubt for self preservation, and move onward. 

Most people in the wake of terror, get up & plod on. Their day does not change. They sleep, they rise, they work, they eat–rinse, repeat. This is a coping mechanism. One we all must mask ourselves with. 

Hearing yet again, the political rhetoric, the story (& for some of us, the agonizing emotional envisioning of the final moments of mothers & children, their horror inside terror) of life shot out & bled from people who did not deserve it, the conspiracy theories & the grief, the scramble to explain the whys–it’s all a heavy toll on the heart. 

To rise & greet the sunlight & snow, so far away & yet feel anything can happen anywhere at any moment that could violently end your world, it’s heavy. 

Today’s day’s text was as always well timed: 

“Throw all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.”

–1 Peter 5:7

I can see how so many would buck belief in God in a world filled with so much hate & violence. But God doesn’t rule the world. He doesn’t steal us up to heaven because he needed another angel. That song “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” comes to mind & it makes me gag. I can’t imagine being raised with this satanic notion that God rules the world in its current state & how angry I would be with Him. I would reasonably draw the conclusion that the god of this world is cruel & unfeeling. What a cunning tactic the god of this world is using. 

“We know that we originate with God, but the whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.”

–1 John 5:19

2 Timothy 3:1-5 describes the people of the last days as being ungodly, selfish, fierce.  Sadly but expectedly this is true. Anyone who can murder the innocent is truly fierce, lacking natural affection for others. 

My heart is so so sad at the news of another mass shooting. This world is truly filled with darkness. May Jehovah give the humble & meek, hope & light. I adore this song linked below. The orchestral is moving enough on its own but add the choral & it feels like warm spring sunshine after the long winter dark, refreshing, soaking down to the division of spirit & soul.

Light In A Darkened World