Monday, December 27, 2010


The orange-red fronds
of dead bracken ferns,
glisten in the ambient light
from this grey-skied afternoon,
as rain descends in long lines
drawn by hesitant hands
with heaven’s choir
singing water music.
Two days past birthing
and refugee babies cry for milk,
with Mary’s song echoing across years
as mothers glance heavenward,
seeking signs of showers.
Divine grace descends like rain,
falling steadily soaking trees,
as earth echoes songs of rain.
The streams of God are full,
cascading with playful prayers
towards the misty lake.
Barrenness and drought call out
to those living in lands of rainfall,
asking for aid beyond a cup of water.
Parched human hearts
look skyward for signs of rain
while drenched souls stumble
in watery grace-soaked lands,
even their trail maps soaked
with the fullness
of grace upon grace.
~fern photo and poem by David Robinson, Dec. 27, 2010


Monday, December 20, 2010


He will come like last leaf’s fall.
one night when the November wind
has flayed the trees to bone, and earth
wakes choking on the mould,
the soft shroud’s folding.
He will come like the frost.
One morning when the shrinking earth
opens on mist, to find itself
arrested in the net
of alien, sword-set beauty.
He will come like dark.
One evening when the bursting red
December sun draws up the sheet
and penny-masks its eye to yield
the star-snowed fields of sky.

He will come, will come,
will come like crying in the night,
like blood, like breaking,
as the earth writhes to toss him free.
He will come like child.
~Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I wonder as I wander out under the sky
How Jesus the Savior did come for to die

For poor on'ry people like you and like I;
I wonder as I wander out under the sky
~John Jacob Niles

Perhaps the greatest loss we experience as we move from childhood into adult is losing our sense of wonder. Children are full of wonder. As children, our lives are naturally alert to the surprises, pleasures and beauty of life pulsating all around us. Children are quick to take delight in little things, like shiny stones along a river bank or the winter thrill of snowflakes.
Socrates claimed, “The beginning of wisdom is wonder.” Months after returning from hiking in Olympic National Park each eary, I’ve feasted richly upon the sounds and sights of that week of wonder.
Wonder most often comes as a surprise. We wander into it unknowing. We gaze and gaze attempting to take in the sight of glory. Our words fall short; yet, our hearts well up with an inner sense of wonder. Thus, wonder is a twice blessed gift, giving delight in our first encounter with such fullness; and once again as we look with that inward eye, as Wordsworth wrote, ‘which is the bliss of solitude’. As we take time to reflect upon the vision of wonder, our hearts fill once again with pleasure and we discover ourselves dancing ‘with the daffodils’.
For many, the month of December, and the season of Advent. are times reminding of us of childlike wonder. As we celebrate the coming of Christ, our home begins to fill with those delights which come out only once a year.
During Christmas, we expect the unexpected. We become children once again. We take time to wonder. In our return to childhood, we share together the delight of wonder. We look up into the clear December sky and think of that Bethlehem star that once led wise men to the place of wonder. There, they laid down their gifts before the Christ child, kneeling to worship and honor the child who would be King.
When Mary birthed Jesus 'twas in a cow's stall
With wise men and farmers and shepherds and all
But high from God's heaven, a star's light did fall
And the promise of ages it then did recall.
On Christmas eve, we gather together, joined by a common sense of wonder at God’s generosity. We sing carols celebrating the coming of God into our darkened world to save ‘poor on’ry people, like you and like I’. Too often, we’ve given up our innocence, trading in our childhood wonder for electronic entertainment or trivialities.
How can we return? How can we find our way back to that five year old age of innocence where we might once again take delight in rain drops falling on our faces? We can travel together to that place of wonder. The way is illuminated by poetry and song. Sing together those lovely Christmas carols, even in July as you wander through a natural cathedral of ancient trees and allow your heart to wonder as you wander out under the sky.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Monday, December 6, 2010


 Silent night, holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon Virgin Mother and Child
Holy Infant so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace
Silent night, holy night!
Shepherds quake at the sight
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia!
Christ, the Saviour is born
Silent night, holy night
Son of God, love's pure light
Radiant beams from Thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth

May you know love's pure light, the radiant beams from the face of God, filling your heart and home with heavenly peace!

Lyrics by Joseph Mohr, 1816