Posted by: Mark Nielsen | August 28, 2011

Jesus the Renovator (original poem by Mark Nielsen)

Renovation of Lipscani Street in Bucharest (wo...

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The inspiration, from To a Dancing God, by Sam Keen (1970) :

God, I want to surrender to the rhythm of music and sea, to the seasons of ebb and flow, to the tidal surge of love.

I am tired of being hard, tight, controlled, tensed against tenderness, afraid of softness. I am tired of directing my world, making, doing, shaping.

Tension is ecstasy in chains. The muscles are tightened to prevent trembling. Nerves strain to prevent trust, hope, relaxation….

Surrender is a risk no sane man may take. Sanity never surrendered is a burden no man may carry.

God give me madness that does not destroy wisdom, responsibility, love.

Source: “inward/outward” -devotional quotes via email
from Church of the Savior, Washington, D.C.

A response to Sam and God, by Mark Nielsen (August 26, 2011) :

Jesus the Renevator

Uh uh uh. hold on a minute.

i know how this works, Jesus. letting you in is like living with a woman. you take over. next thing i know, all the furniture is moved around, the trash is gone, and everything’s put away in its proper drawer.

Except my guts and my plans. those you lay out on the kitchen table like blueprints for a renovation project. i am laid bare for the whole family to see. that’s what i get for hiring you as my contractor. (“all work guaranteed”)

But what if i like my mess the way it was before? i knew where everything was. i could find everything, see what i had to work with, set down my daily troubles on any old countertop, and continue ignoring those monsters in the back of the closet.

i don’t need you rummaging around in the junk drawers of my private life. i don’t want you bringing your crew in to make improvements.

See, i know you, Jesus. i’m barely ready to put a new shelf up in the basement, but all YOU want to do is tear down the entire house of my heart, so you can put up some shiny, new temple in its place.

Yeah, i know there ain’t enough good temples in the world. But why you gotta use MY land to set up your latest headquarters? What’s so special about me, that you would choose me to host you and your crazy team of rebels and clowns?

Can’t you leave my life the way it was, messy but uncomplicated?


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