gospel 5. be. here. listen.

Mark 9.2-10

I AM the leap. I AM the ice cold air you gasp in on take-off.  I AM the muscles which lift you, the limbs which bend, flex and fly free.  I AM the gravity which holds you safe and brings you back down to earth.  I AM the same whether this leap springs from your mind or body.  I AM the exhilaration.  I AM the dance and I AM the dancer, concentrating all her will and skill into this solo jump toward Me.  I AM the drumbeat echoing amongst ancient rocks, the pounding in the blood, the thrumming repetition that here be your stuff of life.  I AM beneath the clamour of the Battle Cry you sound in attack or defence.  I AM the fear you try to disguise with noise.  I AM the tags you paint on your concrete cave walls, the secret language some call desecration, others decoration, others poetry in symbol, others still a claiming of the land, demarcating the borders of the territory of modernity, for My sake.  I AM waiting below the clashing, flashing, whirring, clacking of the shutters, a hungering horde slavering for the soundbite, unable to hear the substance.  I AM the feathered frenzy of cheeps and calls which respond to your tending, those sounds so redolent of a particular place and time in your memory of a moment when you fully attended their subtle glories.  I AM the cry of pain your body gives to recall you from living in your fantastic fabulations which spin you far into the past or future.  I AM every knot and tug, every cramp and cut, every cell supplicating for self-compassion, for you to treat yourself as the infinitely valuable, infinitely beloved child you are.  I AM the one who holds you by the hand wherever you walk, taking you towards sights that will thrill you, even those you ignore at the end of your street.  I AM that light which shines on you and yours, revealing a multitude of messages in each tone and hue and shade of colour.  I AM the voices of the past who visit you so you may hear the story from their point of you,, so your compassion for your ancestors can be activated.  I AM the cloud of witnesses, I AM the communion of saints who have gone before you, whose presence surrounds, protects and guides, by means visible and invisible.  I AM those places whose names you cannot pronounce but whose need for the skills you can bring and the resources you can muster and share is urgent and as yet unmet.  IAM those distant lands you categorise as ‘third world’ just as I AM the lands which surround you as you read this, those that you deem ‘civilised’.  I AM every map which charts the wonders of terrain and topography, of population and rainfall, of mountain, ocean, heath, moor, desert, forest, city alike.  I AM the ancient places, the genius loci of those spaces you built to hear a play, where your sounds travel up impossible heights down the thousands of years, all made possible by the arcane mysteries of acoustics.  I AM your echo-chamber, your sound-deflector, your voice-projector, the secrets of your heart, your mind, your body, your soul have no hiding places from Me – and if you allow Me, I will help you overhear your self so you may grow with Wisdom.  I AM the time you take to concentrate, to unravel the scrolls, the scribes, the manuals, the poets, to attend to the adventurers’ tales of discovering this world that together, we continue to make full of wonders.  I AM under all your complexities, all your trailing vines and roots which entrap and confuse, as I AM the simplicity of the flower in the field, the lily of the water. I AM the unfurling and the flourishing and the blooming: your unfurling, your flourishing, your blooming.  I AM the recycler of yesterday’s thousands of words you claim are news into containers for the very newness of Life.  I AM the Invitation which demands nothing of you but that you lend Me your ears and pause, to be who I made you l you to be, just long enough to receive the bounties I would pour into them.

Published by Kate Kennington Steer

writer, photographer and visual artist

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