Easter, A Poem
Frilly baby blue dresses over new shiny shoes, little pink headbands and ties like a noose.
It’s all the same.
Same dirty hearts and hands lifted in praise to a god I’m not sure is even listening.
We’re here because we want things from him, we talk about him, read about him, sing about him so maybe he’ll owe us and we’ll twist his holy arm so much that he has to shower us with blessings, not him, things, that’s what we truly want.
God looks down and wants to see a body of believers, who look like him, and not a bunch of schemers all building empires like an army of greedy beavers, building dams that back up the wealth, and give it out as they see fit, get scissors and snip, the best part for the church, what’s left for the unfit, the poor, those who smell and stink, the addicted, those covered in ink, but we’ve missed it, or lost it, or both, ‘cause when Jesus got off the boat those were the people who needed the growth, and he saw it and loved them and gave them his all, his sleep, his attention, his power, his call wasn’t to build or collect tithes for the skilled so the people would be filled with some sort of holyish spectacle, whip out your phones and get critical, and lets tweet or rate the service on Google, can’t we see?
That’s not the church.
But we’ve forgotten, our motives are rotten, like a fruit that looks ripe on the surface but inside, only lies, nourishment denied, we’ve forgotten to die to ourselves and be a little more like him, that’s what he wants, can’t you see it, that’s what he’s saying way up there so far from you and me in our Sunday’s best.
“Ignore the week, that’s the rest, we’re here and we’ve showered, now how hear us great power,” isn’t that what we’re all saying, from the center of our hard hearts?
But we can’t do that, we can’t wait and pray, it’s the big day, the pastor just said it, Easter is our “Superbowl,” maybe that’s why we’re dressed up and covering up the gaping hole that’s inside, that screams and cries for more of something that this music can’t pacify, and your funny stories deny, but here it is again and the songs they help some, turn them up, they’re why I’ve come, please don’t you dare turn down the lights or sing those old songs, they depress me, and call me worthless and I’m a gem and a prize and Jesus would be lucky if I chose him to fly beside. That’s why I sing to him, because he’s helpless and dead ‑I mean- I believe that he’s alive, kind of, but he’s so powerless, that’s why I decide. I choose him, like some cosmic Pikachu, and if he tells me to give up the sin I love, well then I’m through, I don’t need holiness, just a ticket to heaven, pure and unleavened? That’s not for me, keep the sanctification I just want an eternal vacation. Heaven. I heard the man say it, it’s our happily ever after, sunshine and rainbows for our last chapter. Jesus took my sins once so he has to take them again, right? Let’s all sin away, heaping judgment day after day, just confess super hard, it’s the only way. Next weekend same place and time? I’ll see you here. How am I? “Fine,” I’ll say and I’ll dress up too, you just bring the coffee, that lure tried and true, but not those doughnuts though ‘cause my diet’s brand new.
That’s in my heart of hearts, is it in yours too? I wonder if he hears us?
Maybe he does, or maybe we’re like the prophets of Baal dancing before an altar we’ve created cause it’s comfy and cozy and gives us the fuzzies every single week, like clockwork, a perfected technique, I guess we’re all addicts, and our substance is church, but how dare I contradict the system, it’s worked, people are still getting “saved,” sure they still misbehave, but their saved, see here they got baptized it’s what this paper has to say, we need papers and numbers, ‘cause we refuse to believe that Jesus is the only way and not just a small part in our grand play.
We only need Jesus.
Only his blood will do. Not numbers or systems or a technical breakthrough.
I’m trying to find in him in this circus we’ve erected in his name, I hope he’s still listening, ‘cause he says not to use it in vain, and I’m pretty sure that vanity is the only thing that I’m seeing. And maybe that’s why I cry, on my face as I’m pleading, searching for the key that will lead me succeeding, into his presence, snot running down my face and my tears making little plip plop plip plop plip plop sounds on the carpet, and I ask him to come down and put an end to our profit-obsessed services and end the circuses stopping the superfluous, and gaudy, to heal the true body.
God above, please show me your love, I can’t go on like this for too much longer, with this thought that only seems to grow stronger, that the people here just like the clever message and the feelings in the music, the glue that makes them stick, smiles and a moral code, but if in you strode, through that open door, would they say, “Hey, we just cleaned that floor! Get out you homeless bum! You have to stay away from, the real churchgoers, we’re church growers and you stink!” Maybe they wouldn’t say it but they’d doublethink and know that a homeless man wasn’t on their charts, because he can’t tithe and without money they’d collide into bankruptcy, because the church is now a business, with a 501(c)(3), a lifeless name like a droid, ruthlessly ingesting any steroid that promises it growth! Think I’ve lost it? What powers your church? Profit, or the Holy Spirit that filled the prophet when he said, “Where is my honor? Where is my fear? No more sacrifices! Shut the door and get out of here! Pray and repent and only come back when I get your best, when submission consumes you and in holiness you’re obsessed.”?
That’s what he wants. But do we have ears to hear Him?
I hope that this plea has made you see Jesus, a little more, but don’t just discuss him in outward sureness, I implore, eternity waits and everything ends, it’s a war, the world needs us, it’s desperate for truth greater than folklore, us, we know the last chapter and the last line, now how many more have to burn before we get charged with a crime?
God forgive us.
Until next time, go lose your life!