The seething holy city of my heart, The saviour comes. But will I welcome him? Oh crowds of easy feelings make a start; They raise their hands, get caught up in the singing, And think the battle won. Too soon they’ll find The challenge, the reversal he is bringing Changes their tune. I know what lies behind The surface flourish that so quickly fades; Self-interest, and fearful guardedness, The hardness of the heart, its barricades, And at the core, the dreadful emptiness Of a perverted temple. Jesus come
Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent: Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
With whom are you traveling? With whom are you associating? With whom are you spending your time? It matters. Happy are they who have not walked in the counsel of the wicked. Happy are they who do not walk with those who do nothing but gripe and complain. Happy are they who do not linger with "energy vampires"(hat-tip to Jon Gordon for that term). Keep your positive energy, keep your spirits high. The journey is long, the pilgrimage to see the Lord is also best spent if you allow God to be with you along the way. Happy are we if we keep counsel with the good, if we plant ourselves by streams of living water, if we allow good fruit to be produced in our lives. Prosperity and happiness, true prosperity and true happiness will be with us if we stick to the good.
1Happy are they who have not walked in the counsel of
the wicked, *
nor lingered in the way of sinners,
nor sat in the seats of the scornful!
2Their delight is in the law of the LORD, *
and they meditate on his law day and night.
3They are like trees planted by streams of water,
bearing fruit in due season, with leaves that do not wither; *
In the past, men and women of old followed the star to find the baby Jesus. In this marvelous hymn/poem, we have the wonderful imagery that we are also on a journey, we also are "on camino," on a pilgrimage always to seek and to find God. Seeking God, following the light and enduring the journey, every step, until we find God in the most surprising of places. And there, when we have encountered God, we lay down our treasures, whatever they may be - all things come of thee, O Lord, and of thine own have we given thee. And this giving is in Joy! the joy of completing a journey, of the pilgrimage to follow the light, and to seek, and ultimately, to find God.
T.S. Eliot reads "The Journey of the Magi" ~ click HERE
T.S. Eliot's, "The Journey of the Magi"
“A cold coming we had of it, Just the worst time of the year For a journey, and such a long journey: The ways deep and the weather sharp, The very dead of winter.” And the camels galled, sorefooted, refractory, Lying down in the melting snow. There were times we regretted The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces, And the silken girls bringing sherbet. Then the camel men cursing and grumbling and running away, and wanting their liquor and women, And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters, And the cities hostile and the towns unfriendly And the villages dirty and charging high prices: A hard time we had of it. At the end we preferred to travel all night, Sleeping in snatches, With the voices singing in our ears, saying That this was all folly. Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley, Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation; With a running stream and a water-mill beating the darkness, And three trees on the low sky, And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow. Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel, Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver, And feet kiking the empty wine-skins. But there was no information, and so we continued And arriving at evening, not a moment too soon Finding the place; it was (you might say) satisfactory. All this was a long time ago, I remember, And I would do it again, but set down This set down This: were we led all that way for Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly We had evidence and no doubt. I had seen birth and death, But had thought they were different; this Birth was Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death. We returned to our places, these Kingdoms, But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation, With an alien people clutching their gods. I should be glad of another death.