I remember mourning, hiding,
Afraid of barbarous soldiers,
Of being recognized again,
Failing, denying You … again.
My staunch resolve of willpower
Melted, crumpled in just hours.
And You knew; You predicted it.
Yet Your words, the way You said it
Did not accuse but let You show,
You love me despite what You know.
Remembering our last exchange,
I had wished to go back and change
My words to appreciation
And not ones of trepidation.
Your arrest, trial, torture, death
Thrust upon us, on me, so fast,
No final words with fervid breath
Nor time to process all that passed.
Where shall I go? Back to time in
Capernaum, to safeness, fishing?
Can I resume being Simon
Without yearning for more, wishing?
After these past three years, could I
Now pretend not to know the Truth?
Could I, for a fourth time, deny
My allegiance and Your worth, too?
Had plans for me, named me Peter,
Said You’d use me to build Your church,
Why, Lord, did You choose me leader,
And leave Your faithful in a lurch?
Did my brother apostles see
My fear, denials, failure, guilt?
How could one so weak ever lead
Them, build upon what You have built?
Had I known then what I know now,
To walk by faith and not by sight,
I’d not dwell on fear, I’d allow
Your fealty to be my might,
To trust in You, accept Your plan
Even though I don’t understand,
To let go of biased notions
And keep heart and spirit open.
Thank you, Lord, for sending Your Son,
For His example—how to live.
Your Gift is the essential one:
The prime love only You can give.
Poem written by Gerald Dierkes, information services specialist for the Information and Research Assistance team, senior copy-editor for the Communication and Service Promotion team and a liaison to the Department of Theater.
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