With mercy we
transcend time and
space, we are lifted
into God’s eternal
even a smile, hidden
maybe or a touch so
tiny and fragile,
reaching out, is of
in God’s eyes and
Who am I now, Lord,
Battered and abused
And thrown in the abyss
I had not known how further I could fall
Forced into a pit
Not of my making
Broken and torn and splintered apart
Rent asunder at the core
That is where I have been
These last 4 years
Over twenty years of agony
And unimagined suffering
the last have been beyond
Any suffering previously known or felt
the trauma, though
compared to the shredding of my self
from the inside out
There simply are no words
The empty, screaming desolation
Of a mind
And a body
That once danced
in the world
How can I say who I am anymore
When all I held dear about myself
was rent from me?
My body now repeatedly assaulted, broken down and emptied
Destroyed by any and every simple noise or movement past me.
Tortured by normality
No longer can I smile at abuse and denial
And laugh with hopeful inner strength.
No longer does that beautiful pure light
That kept me safe
In the shadows of my illness.
My mind, so crushed and blackened
into the smallest possible space conceivable
For life to remain
Is trying to heal
Is clawing its way back
The damage is done
Is it irreparable?
Only God can say?
Have I lost my faith?
No, but it has been sorely tested
In the desperate agony of moments
That few could bear and still stay sane or present
My faith a burning sword in the darkness
My wisdom now a slicing sword of truth
I can no longer love as I once loved
I can no longer care as I once cared
I can no longer be the gentle sweet person
I perhaps was once long ago
For torture marks you
Betrayal scars you
Trauma destroys you
Denial alienates you
And fear annihilates you
It is only the sweet tenderness of Mercy
Whispering in the darkest place
That saves me from destruction
And blesses me with a hope
That lives beyond hopeless helplessness
And holds me safe
in the empty void of endless nothing
And broken being
And leads me on
Still incredibly unbelievably
Holds me to the truth of who I am
Miraculously lifting me
Moment by moment
Towards a light I can no longer innerly see
And guides me
..some more insights on Mercy from my wife, Linda :
“The source of Mercy was love, is love and shall ever be love; this is truly beyond words, can be seen only with spiritual eyes, is present for everyone and heals all hurt, saves all souls.
Mercy is how forgiveness is possible. Mercy is how unforgiveness can be redeemed. Mercy is how reaching heaven is possible. Mercy is how Christ is with us. Mercy is how we have eternal life. Mercy is how all is made well, whether in time or outside time.
Mercy is how we can pray, is how we enter into relationship with God, is how we can discern spiritual truth.
Mercy is all that is held in the Heart of Love, for all is touched my Mercy and there is no place that Mercy is not.”
“May your mercy always find a pathway to my heart.”
This is a prayer that was given to me in contemplation and every time I read the words they touch my heart with an unexpected tenderness as if the goodness of God’s mercy has found it and warmed it again.
I feel I need to be constantly reminded of this prayer and to open my heart unto the goodness therein.
How often I need to feel God’s mercy, God’s kindness, God’s gentleness and God’s blessing upon me. How hard it is to always be gentle, kind and loving to myself. I find an immediacy in this prayer that makes it already so.
Not only does it remind me of the goodness and purity, the truth and lovliness of God’s presence with me and my need to accept His love, but it also reminds me of my need to open my heart in mercy to others, just as God instantly opens His heart to me.
It is this love that brings mercy to be a living actuality, not just a concept. It is mercy that transcends all pain, all sorrow, all hurt, all unforgiveness, all wounding to say : .
This is how I want to live, in the fullness of God’s mercy, in the absolute beingness of love.
As we enter Holy Week, we contemplate the need for forgiveness and ask why it is so important to forgive?
Forgiveness, from a human perspective, is such a complex multi-layered task that it seems so very hard to do in practice, especially if the harm done to a person by another is truly great or permanent. Surely some of the acts that people perpetuate against each other are simply too heinous to forgive or the hurt so great that it seems impossible to achieve, even with right intent?
We are, after all human and fragile; easily hurt, especially if the intent is deliberate. So why does God ask us to forgive? And how does God help us achieve the seemingly impossible?
It helps to remember that Jesus lived on the earth amongst us. He was both human and divine. He knows are suffering and our frailty intimately. He saw first hand the harm done to each of us when hurt was not healed.
He saw how hurt can diminish us from living fully as we are meant to be, how hurt can turn to hatred or punishment or self-righteous indignation, can eat away at the soul, can disempower and result in people’s lives becoming entrenched and stuck in unhealed grief and anger. He saw the importance of forgiveness, not just as a healing for the other person, but a freedom for ourselves from the harm done to us by others.
God asks us to pray for our enemies, presumably all those who hate us and even those who are indifferent, yet still cause us hurt and trespass against us in their ignorance, whether plain or deliberate. In truth this is not easy to do for most. Who would wish to bless those who have hurt you? And yet, this is what God asks.
And I have come to understand why. If we do not pray for them and send love to them or at least ask God to do this for us, then we remain caught in hurt, negativity, angst and get sucked down to lower levels of more negative and angry or upset energy. It ruins our live’s even more to dwell in the energy of hurt and the unforgiveness that accompanies it.
More than this, if we wish harm on others or wish the same on them as they have done to us, then we become like them or worse. And the negative energy of unlove becomes more than that, because it can move from sin, which we see as an absence of love, to evil, which is wicked and against God.
Therefore let us ask God with confidence to come to our aid in praying for everyone truly, not just those we love, but those who we do not like and those who have hurt us, seeing the need to be free from all hurt by embracing the truth and freedom that forgiveness brings.
I am not saying it will be easy or even that you will feel that you want to, but if you can step towards forgiveness you step towards love. And when your ability to feel forgiveness fails you, pray for yourself and do not be harsh or self- judgmental. Yet keep asking God to help you begin and find some form of prayer that you can genuinely say.
He knows how painful and hard forgiveness is, yet His Mercy overarches everything: pride, hurt, justification, deserving, loss, grief, anger, despair, desolation, rage, humiliation, betrayal, torment and deliberate harm even. And fills the voids in our hearts and minds ultimately with His love and His healing presence.
Sometimes it may be that you can forgive quickly, sometimes it may take years, a lifetime or even we believe it can happen beyond the grave, outside time and space, within the complete oneness of Love, the Heart of the Trinity, for ultimately His Mercy holds all and is all. Amen
ONLY POETRY CAN BEGIN TO EXPRESS PROFOUND SUFFERING. TO WITNESS MY WIFE WEEPING IN TORMENT, FROM THE AGONY OF HER ILLNESS DEFIES WORDS, IT IS SO HORRIBLE.
Utterly broken by the noise assault upon my being
It enters into every nook and cranny
of my existence,
And devours me from the inside,
paralysing me from head to toe,
so that time after time,
no part escapes.
I am tormented.
I am scalded with pain.
I am raging at the injustice:
the continued violation of my home,
my living space,
till I can no longer bear
of the horror of it.
It defines my life.
It breaks me into tiny fragments
so that my body will not,
to hold me up,
this daily torture
from loud and violating noise attacks
to even simple ordinary things.
It is unrelenting
and a violent assault
upon an already weak
and fractured body.
My life is being torn from me
And ripped apart
with crass ignorance
or abuse of power and might
or simply, just by being in the room with me now,
in the wrong moment,
in the wrong way,
at the wrong angle,
without realising the danger
till I am left weeping
my soul crying for mercy
of medical neglect.
When we first got married it seemed there was no end to what we could dream. But devastating, crippling, never- ending sickness and profound disability came and never went away. Now our dreams are necessarily limited. Not many could cope.
We have not only had to take on living within and through constant suffering, we have had to deal with the lack of resolution . Other people get sick and get better, there is an end to it. Here, after 21 years, there is no end remotely in sight, in fact it gets worse by the day.
To take on a journey like this, three things are necessary : the ability to embrace uncertainty, the courage to hold on, the desire to grow – in other words, Faith, Hope and Love.
The carer, who enters in and dares to tread where others would not dare ,who sees what no one else will see, will end up taking on many things
When you enter, with open heart into the life of someone , fragile, vulnerable, physically ill and incapacitated, it is very important that you see things clearly and that you still maintain some sense of self, so that your whole world does not become consumed by the illness.
Beware of taking on more than you should, of identifying with the person more than is healthy, of over identifying with the ill person’s experience and somehow making it your own, this will not help either of you.
To take on what is right and just and not to take on that which you should not, turn your eyes to God and always ask for His help. His gifts of the Spirit are powerful.
There is great need for wisdom, discernment, truth, there is great need for love, compassion, mercy.
These gifts will empower you, will heal you, will aid you and remember that these gifts are not just for you to use for others, but also to use for yourself. Always be kind to yourself, always seek for understanding and self awareness.
Self awareness, illuminated by God’s light, empowered by God’s Spirit, filled with God’s compassion and mercy, will keep you safe.