This is the first time I’ve tried a blackout poem. They work by taking a page of text and then blacking it out until only the remaining words give you the poem.Continue reading A blackout poem on the Trinity (a poem)
It’s said that it’s hard to pack anything of substance into such a short poetry form. (Haikus are a Japanese type of poem with three lines. The first has five syllables, the second seven, and the third five.) To be sure, it’s not easy, but it can be done.Continue reading Three haikus on the Trinity (a poem)
Something a little more light-hearted this week.
It’s said that Trinity Sunday is also called ‘Heresy Sunday’ because so many ‘explanations’ on the Trinity fall into one heresy or another.Continue reading Three limericks on the Trinity (a poem)
Also called “reverse” poems, palindrome poems are ones where the lines are read forwards and then again backwards.Continue reading A palindrome poem on the Trinity (a poem)
Yes, “villanelle” is both a name and a type of poem.Continue reading A villanelle on the Trinity (a poem)
With this poem, I had two goals — and failed at both.Continue reading A sestina on the Trinity (a poem)
It’s been a few weeks since Pentecost, but I felt this site needs some more poems about the Holy Spirit. One a year is not enough. Having now learned a little Ancient Greek, I took inspiration from some observations I had while reading Acts 2:1–4.Continue reading The fire of day 50: a poem for Pentecost (with pictures)
Continuing the series of poems drawing on the scripture readings in a Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. Strictly speaking, the reading for today is Isaiah 11:1–3a;4a;6–9.
When I looked at this passage, the thing that stayed with me most was the concept of a hendiadys. Literally meaning “one from two,” a hendiadys is where a single thought is expressed in two words joined with “and”.Continue reading Isaiah 11:1–9: The King of Peace (a poem)
Today is the last in my series on the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22. It’s on love.
As a neurodiverse person, I’ve had a somewhat reluctant relationship with the word “love.” Growing up, people usually described it in terms of emotions that I either didn’t experience, or didn’t experience in the ways that everyone else did.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: love (a poem)
This is part of a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. Honestly, I didn’t know where I was going to begin with today’s poem.
I’d been told plenty of times before that joy is not the same as happiness and that you can have joy even when you’re not happy. As I wrestled to make sense of this, I concluded that joy must be like a sense of inner security that one carries in all circumstances. But isn’t that what peace is about?
I think joy is much more about delight and appreciation.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: joy (a poem)
This is part of a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. Today’s word is peace.
I’m almost embarrassed to write about peace, given that I can be anxious so often. I don’t want to write something that feels disconnected from our present reality, and yet I believe most surely that God’s peace has a completeness and depth that will surpasses everything we could hope for.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: peace (a poem)
This is part of a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. Once again, I’ve taken out my concordance and found out some surprising facts about the New Testament Greek.
I like to think of patience as “love waiting”, as something that exists in its own right separate from any sense of sin or fallenness. But it’s still true that most of the uses of “patience” in the Bible are linked to the world not (yet) being as it should be.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: patience (a poem)
This is part of a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. There is nothing like kindness to cement a friendship.
It’s that feeling of “you didn’t have to do this” that makes it so memorable. The kindness might be a gift in a moment of need, a gentle steer away from a pitfall you didn’t know was there, or someone accommodating you when you make a mistake.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: kindness (a poem)
This is part of a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. Once again, I’m struck by how much I discover when I get out my concordance and start looking at the Greek words.
Take, for example, Jesus’s words in Matthew 7:17 where he says that every “good” tree bears “good” fruit. These are two different words in the Greek, but many English translations render both words as “good”.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: goodness (a poem)
This is part of a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. Faithfulness is such a big word. I think if there’s one thing, just one thing that God wants us to know about him, it’s that he is someone who fulfils his good promises. And of course, faithfulness is a huge part of that.
As I sat and considered the word in more detail, five words came to me:Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: faithfulness (a poem)
For the next few weeks, I’m writing a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. I started with self-control last week, and this week is gentleness.
I found out some interesting things about the Greek word translated as “gentleness”. The word is πραύτης meaning “meekness”, “gentleness” or “humility” and it’s the same word used in the beatitudes in Matthew 5:5 (“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth”).Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: gentleness (a poem)
For the next few weeks, I’m writing a series of poems on the virtues described as the fruit the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. I’m starting with self-control.
So often, I hear self-control described in terms of hemming ourselves in, or resisting ungodly tendencies. Yet these descriptions feel lacking to me, as they can only have meaning in the context of sin. The other eight virtues all stand in their own right as expressions that will have a place in God’s kingdom when all sin is done away with.
I did, however, find one notable exception to the rule.Continue reading Songs of the Spirit: self-control (a poem)
Pentecost is often celebrated as the birthday of the church. We remember how the Holy Spirit came in power upon the apostles, how they preached in Jerusalem and how everyone heard them praising God in their mother-tongue. The story is recorded in Acts 2.
Pentecost, if you didn’t know, is so named because it’s the fiftieth day after Passover; it marks the festival of first fruits in the Jewish calendar (Deuteronomy 16:9-12), which is why there were so many Jews in Jerusalem.
For myself, I think one of the most important things about the Holy Spirit that I’ve come to reckon with, is that the Holy Spirit is a person.Continue reading Air, fire, water, clay (a poem celebrating the Holy Spirit)
Bible references for this poem: Matthew 28:16–20, Acts 1:1–11.
When I was still at school, perhaps still at primary school, a friend asked me why Jesus couldn’t have stuck around. Immediately, I piped up about the Holy Spirit and Jesus’s Spirit can be with everyone, everywhere, simultaneously in a way that an embodied, physical Jesus couldn’t.
As I look back at my younger self, I’m a little surprised at how bold I was – but in a good way. The Holy Spirit is just as much a person of the Trinity as Jesus is.Continue reading Divine comedy (a poem reflecting on Jesus’s ascension)
The twelfth day of Christmas, Epiphany, was yesterday. We have officially moved beyond the Christmas season. And this devotional series ends today. It is, after all, day 40.
I’m not sure I quite knew what I was biting off when I planned this series. It’s definitely been a stretch assignment, but I’m proud of what I’ve achieved and the skills I’ve learned.Continue reading Christmas 2020: Week 6, Day 5: Revelation