Tuesday, December 18, 2012

so loud
then the solemn bells rang
and the hole
that is left in us
like loosing a limb
you learn
to live without
you never learn
to like it

Dearest Jesu,
I pray that you will create for Newtown the same indescribable peace you created for me. When She lost twins. You gave me a new perspective on "the peace that passes understanding". It felt like walking into a wall of water. I felt drenched in your grace. Like I was swimming in it. When I left that hospital room... somewhere down the hall I felt like I walked out of that "wall of water", & yet... like your grace was dripping off of me, off the end of my fingers & oozing into the walls & the floor. To seek out others who need it. I pray that grace descends on Newtown. That they would feel your peace filling the streets.  That you would be felt there, in their midst. Watching over them, comforting them, holding them.

As we celebrate your birthday, I pray that we will be thankful ...
for you coming to change the world forever
for those people you have allowed to walk or be born into our lives
that we will see again, the people we wish would fill the empty chairs around our tables
for families
both that we are born into
and the ones
who have elected us into their fold

thanks for my families,
for Living Word,
growth group
that LW's kindness
is matched by their giving hearts

I've heard so many vigils & random acts of kindness that are going on. Today, as I listened to Christmas carols at work, & thought of the solemn bells that will ring this Fri. makes me want to call in a request to play a Christmas song or two around the time of, or shortly after the bells toll.
Ring Christmas Bells - Ray Conniff
Prince of Peace - Trans-Siberian Orchestra
Oh Holy Night - Harry Connick Jr.
Cry of a Tiny Babe - Bruce Cockburn
and casting crowns version of I heard the bells on Christmas day
[fav. line: "redemption rips through the surface of time, in the cry of a tiny babe..."]
In the First light - Glad

Ring Christmas bells, merrily ring, 
Tell all the world Jesus is King.
Loudly procalim with one accord 
The happy tale, Welcome the Lord.

Ring Christmas bells, sound far and near 
The birthday of Jesus is here.
Herald the news to young and old,
Tell it to all in every tongue.

Ring Christmas bells, tell loud and long 
Your message sweet, peal and prolong,
Come all ye people, join in the singing,
Repeat the story told by the ringing.

Ring Christmas bells, through out the earth
Tell the glad news of Jesus' birth,
Loudly proclaim with one accord 
The happy tale, Welcome the Lord.
"This will be our reply to violence: to make music more intensely, more beautifully, more devotedly than ever before." - Leonard Bernstein
[quoted from twitter, by @theStOlafChoir, via @bellasoul]

the story above is where my sign off came from...
 May His grace drip from your fingers,

[I posted about the loss a long while ago here.  if your curious]

Friday, December 14, 2012

I heard...

"...I heard the bells
on Christmas
their old
familiar carols
wild and sweet
the words repeat
of peace on Earth
good-will to men...
in despair
i bowed my head
there is no peace
on Earth
I said
hate is strong

and mocks the song
of peace on Earth
good-will to men

Then pealed
the bells
more loud and deep:
"God is not dead,
nor doth He sleep;

The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth,
good-will to men."

-from the poem/song "I heard the Bells on Christmas day"
I kept listening to this today after hearing the news from Connecticut, a version by Casting Crowns

the story of the song is here

A dark day, of a bright season
I heard the news ring out
someone else
killed kids today
while part of me
can't wait to see
The Hobbit
after the news
I can't wait
for The Return of the King
And as the news sinks in
and hurts
from core
to skin
How do we explain
to kids
what we don't understand
"smart people"
will try to tell me why
part of me
doesn't wanna understand
the rational
of killing fellow man
a high school friend's
t-shirt flashes cross
my memory's movie screen
"save the humans"
a whale pickets
can't we occupy
oh great
and High King-God
do we reach
those who could do this next?
how do we rescue them
so we don't need rescued from them?
when will you come
we need you
to come
to tell tanks
their job is being phased out
to put death
out of business
days like today
I long
to see Death
at the unemployment office
"sorry, sir
you benefits
are being denied"
[with heavy heart,
while holding onto the end of The Book]
b.e. noll

Jesu, at times like this.... I really do wonder
how long [lyrics]

My friend Byron posted a link on his facebook page of sad songs at Christmas.
Snow Angels by Over the Rhine

...so many thoughts about today. On a personal note, I was hoping for a phone call about a job...that never came. I felt really bummed about my day & myself... until the news came... & washed my "personal hiccup" away.
Neal Morse does a great job of sharing darkness in his "story albums". Yet, he never ends them in the darkness.
So, if you don't mind, I'd like to do the same...
Over the Rhine - New Redemption song
This post is mostly about a random act of violence...so, as I posted on facebook, I'll end this post with a random act in the opposite direction...

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

not so unexpected [@ least for me]

Yes, I am excited that next Sat. I will be in a movie theater watching The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey [which I am now told is part 1 of 3]. Keeping with the previous film adaptations of J.R.R. Tolkien's [John Ronald Reuel Tolkien's] beloved stories of Middle-earth. I'm told it clocks in @ 3hrs, 9min. I've enjoyed the book, so the length of the movie seems to suggest they won't leave anything to the "wish that was in the movie" category. I'm glad that they only added 1 actor who plays a character from Lord of the Rings trilogy who wasn't in that trilogy. Mr. Freeman seems to fit nicely as "the Young Bilbo Baggins". So if you want to O.D. on trailers for the film go on youtube [I think they're up to "TV spot # 9" now] & you can watch 30 min. of trailers for the film.
I wanted to embed a trailer or 2 but, alas, I'll have to settle for linking to them.

The Hobbit [trailer 1]
The Hobbit [trailer 2]
A fan edited 7 min. trailer featuring both previous ones & TV trailers together

One of my favorite dialogue moments is in the first trailer.
It seems true to life,
at least to me.
"You'll have a tale or 2 to tell when you get back."
"Can you promise that I will come back?"
"No...    ...but if you do... you will not be the same."

try to enjoy the journey,
wherever it leads.
And follow the greatest leader.
b.e. noll

Sunday, December 2, 2012

inspiration from LW today.

I had mixed feelings from the life story that a man named George gave this morning. I have felt as he described. Not wanting to get out of bed. Wanting to die. Every day, for months on end. I felt that way in 1990-91. I went to bed praying to God that he would, at least kill me. [my exact words were: "I'm going to close my eyes now. Please don't let them open again... ever." every morning I'd open them "____, I'm still here"] Yet as the days wore on I prayed for God to "un-make" me. So that I wouldn't simply stop living... rather, never to have lived at all.
...yet, if you read this blog... if you enjoy my poems... you should be thankful for those dark days. For shortly thereafter, is when my poetic writings began. That was when I began to seek solitude on Saturday mornings. Around October, I "threatened" God. Yeah, it does sound funny, doesn't it? I sat there & told him I wasn't moving or speaking till he did something. Even if it meant he "came down & kicked me in the face". [yes, those were my exact words to the Almighty!] It took several hours for me to actually be quiet. All the way down to my thoughts. Then it was like he walked out from behind a tree sat down beside me & said: "So you're going to shut up & listen...Wow, this IS a first for you."
It took all of that, the better part of a year, to get me to spend 1 on 1 time with God. [from April to October] He didn't wave a magic wand & "POOF" my problems were gone. Yet, when we were together, on those mornings... I felt alive. I felt 2 extremes at the same time. Like I had electricity running through me. Wide awake, as though the words were redefined. Yet at exactly the same time I felt a deep peace. A peace so deep, it made the Grand Canyon seem like a crack in the sidewalk. When I was in those moments, nothing else mattered. Money, car, job, no girlfriend,... none of these things, true as they were then, mattered. Heck, they didn't even occur to me then! I was with God, my maker. shortly thereafter, words would come. Like you were pouring a glass of your favorite drink. Words would, at times, flood out so fast my hand & fingers would hurt trying furiously to put them to paper as they came. I shared them with someone, sure they were song lyrics. As I think I've said here before, he said: "this reads like poetry." "oh" was my halfhearted reply. I didn't know anyone who read poetry then. Now, I've had a few people tell me they love my writings. They have been healing. They have let me scream what I'm feeling at times. I've been surprised, at times by how they've come. [not to mention where & when]
Well... here is another one.

He came
he came
as a child
he who fashioned the stars
was found by 3 men following one
held in the hands he made
given a father
a "step" father
yet being this father's
author, father, maker
placed in a manger
having created the trees felled
to make it
he came
housed in human form
who invented time
became born inside it
the only man
who had all the time in the world
-and never wastes a second
the author of the universe
born into the story
he's writing
he came
by choice
the one who sits on the throne of judgement
to be judged
by criminals
killed by people
his mind created
killed by humans
to redeem them
he came to live a life
I'd understand
to die
so I'd know
the value he places
on each human
he came
to suffer once
he came to die
so that one day
we could watch him
bury death
& live

by b.e. noll
[yeah, Mom. this is what I was writing]

is a surgery
a removal of what will never be missed.
to replace it with
what should always have been.
[removing the temporary
& replacing it with what is eternal.]

2 songs I thought of today.
a young woman mentioned not wanting this season to end
After December Slips away [I love First Call's version best, but couldn't find it]
and from inklings, someone wrote a short poem on the ocean...
Ocean by King's X
I don't know why this makes me think of God. I guess I think of the ocean as an idea of how big God's love for me is. How I could be swallowed up in His love... drown in it. To submerge into it so far that I wouldn't even know how to get out. Or which way to try to go to get out....guess I think of that as Ty sings "it is there, to remind me...". I'm not saying what they thought of when they wrote it. I've never asked them.