exodus journey

Lent is a time in the wilderness. A time when we enter again into the exodus journey from whatever enslaves us into the freedom of Christ. Melodie Ng’s wonderfully evocative poem, “exodus journey” serves well as an entry into our Lenten journey.

IMG_0699 slake my thirst

parched arid land
dust swirls
sticks to skin
peer through grit
sand in eyes

we are stumbling

lead me
camp in our midst
our wilderness terrain

we’re in need of navigation
of feelings too obscure

and our broken loves
numb selves
our stinging memory
like nettles

our illnesses
and body scales
our sins
and small meanness
the rot inside

we take pills we can’t stop taking
we down your manna
dreaming of something more substantial
to absorb our guilt
and crowd out loneliness
something that will ease this
wrenching hunger
rattle in our bones
as we slide our hands
across bellies

slake my thirst

I dream of torrential rain

for goodness to overpower
for grace to move us forward
in spite of our small steps
and flagging feet

move us forward
move us into feeling
into hope
into healing

make us your people

my lips are dry and cracking
I can taste salt
tears come when I think of your nearness and your distance

we must journey through this desert
to shed our slavery
one shackle
one chain
one thought
one lie
at a time

before we lie in the dust
before we lie in the dust
our bodies shaking with hunger, thirst
you break rocks open to gushing water
you turn stones to fresh bread
you grip our chains
and they crumble in your wrath

as I walk in this desert
what words does the shepherd speak
what direction does he lead
what does he say
when I hold his bread
when I stare at the loaf
when I, tired worn weary
fight with all energy I have left
to put pieces of food in my mouth
and swallow

to put my hand on my belly
to drag my gaze from the ground
and fix it on the horizon
to let go
and rest

what words does the shepherd speak to me
what words will heal
what words will silence the enemy
and bring me peace
what words
what words
what words.

Melodie Ng

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