THE PEARL THAT IS YOU (for Ruth)

When you tithe, you might buy a few more bricks for a new church annex,
But, unfortunately, you won’t be able to buy God
Through this kind of material agency.

And, even though thousands of people regularly assemble at a specific place of worship –
God will more commonly be found, waiting alone, out in the parking lot.

In truth, God resists being organized
By a committee, a denomination, or even a religious empire,
Nor can God be systematized by logic or complex mathematical equations –
In fact, it’s simply not possible to preserve a spiritually deteriorating civilization
By transforming a standard-issue, everyday God into a shibboleth
To be held in people’s mouths like a piece of butterscotch candy.

Even if we stand out in the street – shouting –
“Open, Jesus, Open”–
God will refuse to open
Because God doesn’t respond to “holy” passwords.

Usually, God is most likely to be found when we’re not really looking –
And, frequently, is discovered in the most surprising places.

The human heart has enough room for a miniature sky – sprinkled with surprises –
But the best one – by far – the one you’ve always hoped for –

Will arrive first thing in the morning
When, half-asleep, your hand reaches under your pillow –
And, there it is –
The pearl you’ve traded your entire life for –

The pearl that is you.

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STILL A POSSIBILITY

It takes some imagination to experience the Holy –
God can’t be “painted” solely in prose – it always takes a “good dose” of the poetic
To display God’s brilliant colors.

Love is humanity’s expressway to God –
Jesus himself merged into God through love
And then informed everyone what he’d accomplished
So they could do the same.

Jesus never envisioned establishing a major religion –
Rather, he saw himself as a spiritual teacher
Who taught everyone could achieve a relationship to God
Similar to the one he had discovered.

So, if you do happen to follow Jesus’ teachings –
You’ll be able to gain important insights into the Divine –

Yes, it’s true, ecstasy still remains a possibility
For those of us living in the Twenty First Century.

INEFFABLE LOVE

The love of God is like a cool fountain
Continually shooting joy up into our hearts –
Or a bright flame that illuminates our minds
And never goes out.

Once you experience ineffable love
You’ll know what God is like –

Nevertheless, this is difficult to describe
Even for mystics or poets.