Kind of Way – A Poem

I know that you know.
So I should probably confess it.
Not because it’s a bad thing.
But because it’s normal
and necessary to admit
you’ve disappointed me
and continue to.
Although I don’t mind as much
now.

Still, there were many times
I prayed.
Followed the rules.
Gave my two mites.
Did all the things I was told would work
and others certified
with charismatic conviction
to do more
give more
faith more
sacrifice more
lots more.

But still, nothing.
No breakthrough
like I believed
like I prayed for.

I underestimated you.
I wanted to believe
you were containable
constrainable
and reliable
in the ‘my way’ kind of way.
The magician
hitman
slot machine
deal maker
earth shaker
genie-in-a-bottle
kind of way.

Then I recalled
that on a dark but necessary day
you took yourself
and my kind of way
and the cosmos
to a cross.

Then you went missing for three days.
And my world fell apart.

All my hope exhaled a forsaken surrender,
and my heart broke
and my dreams broke.
My kind of way
kind of died
again.

And there you were
alive and the same
but not really.
A resurrected form of you
that even took familiar friends
by surprise.

And that’s what you keep doing.
To this day
you keep failing and disappointing me
in the best kind of ways.

Every time I think I’ve got you
where I think I need you
you disappoint and disappear
and turn up incognito
on a familiar path
at a regular meal
in an average garden
with a spark in your eye
that demands my attention.
You invite me again
to put my hand in your side
embrace you and kiss you
and get to know you again
in a new kind of way.

‘Kind of way’
David Tensen
April ’19

Background: This year, the Easter weekend reminds me of the necessary laying down and dying of agendas and dreams I had for God to turn up like some kind of bell-hop, magician, sugar-daddy, Santa Claus, genie or despot that I could manipulate, appease or broker deals with. Our ego/flesh/immaturity prefers this because it doesn’t need to risk nakedness, vulnerability and being exposed and loved as we are. It shouldn’t be a surprise that we’ve turned the Easter message into some kind of transactional appeasement deal.

This year, more than ever, Galgotha, the grave and the Gardener remind me of the essential role which God’s disappointing and disappearing play in my maturity and growth. It reminds me that the unconditional love given towards me is actually required in return – like in any healthy family relationship. I’m reminded of the need to move beyond religious constructs based on magic, separation and sacrifice to something extravagantly hidden in plain sight throughout the cosmos – including; the kindness of strangers, the cheeky smile of a child, the warm embrace of my wife, a good laugh with a friend, the tearful reading of a poem. But to see this, my ‘kind of way’ must give way to see The Way in the way He decides to be unveiled.

#poetry #poem #easter #journey #heart #disappointment #divinity #agenda

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