Not sure when I wrote this one, must be at least 8-9 years ago. The vision of God as lover and friend, filling the hole left by lack of human love.
TOUCHED BY LOVE
The damaged came to Jesus in their need;
He reached His hand and touched them, they were freed.
I have been one who walked the frozen night
With slow, uncertain steps. Too scared to move
I’d huddle on the rocks that pierced the ice
And try to visualise the warmth of love.
I held this dream: stark, bright against the gloom
Through my long ice age while my strength grew weak;
A whispered longing from my numbed, torn heart,
The only prayer my secret soul could speak.
And then you came. Across my frozen fields
You walked in truth. I felt the warmth of you
Draw my scared longings from my snowbound heart,
I met the harbingers of something new.
All of this time, bewildered in my cage,
Locked in by pain and pride and frozen rage,
I called to God to come and set me free,
But love’s the only path to liberty.
I followed after you with longing eyes,
Stretched my stiff soul small faltering steps to take,
And, stumbling, forced my rigid limbs to move
In parody of love for love’s dear sake.
What did you see? I scarcely dare to ask.
Do snowmen dance? Do frigid puppets thaw
Into bright ballet? More like Frankenstein
I lumbered hesitant and stiff and sore.
I had no grace of movement or of heart
Save that one grace: unquenchable desire,
Motor and motivator of my steps,
In my cold wastes Christ’s precious spark of fire.
He is my God, my sun of heat and light;
His grace the daystar of my bitter night.
I was afraid your heat would melt from me
My self’s own shape, till, liquid, I would fall
Into unbeing’s puddle . Sore afraid,
I hid and did not answer to your call.
And still you waited, till a warmer sun
Rose in my sky at God’s ordained decree
And, while you wandered at my edge of sight,
How dared I hope that you would wait for me?
And, yet, you did! If I could understand
That thing love is I surely would have known
The gift was for my taking. Ignorant,
I stumbled on, cold, miserable, alone.
Christ my creator draws me with the string
Of matchless grace towards His living Spring.
He offered up Himself that I might be
A new creation, loving, loved and free.
You saw my faltering progress, stopped and turned
Welcomed with words that I half understood
(Only I saw in you that hope I yearned,
And, still confused, yet recognised a good)
By your first touch my wavering heart was won
To a commitment which it could not break
To journey on. I did not know the way,
Yet love commanded me for love’s own sake.
So, still I struggled. By the Son’s warm light
Making strange progress. Your arms opened wide
Ready to catch me when, at length I came
Stumbling across my fear and hurt and pride.
And then you took me where I longed to be,
Into your arms, clasped close and welcomed there;
Held fast against my own dark emptiness
Till every breath became a sheltering prayer.
My Father’s mercy goes before, behind;
Drowns my wild fears and overturns my mind.
Here is my thawing place. Here I can rest
Safe-souled in warmth of your dear cherishing,
Glad for this given shelter on the way
To my true home where love is everything.
Here there is healing for my journey pains
Where my long frozen numbness melts away
Softened by love into a living form
Which can dance forth to love and laugh and pray.
I meet your love, and, meeting, know it God’s,
No lesser love could touch the child within
Blessing the hidden hunger of her heart,
Making a refuge midst her terror’s din.
God, my dear blessed God heard all my prayer.
I turned and found His love already there,
Love that has always held me in embrace,
But now, at last, my heart can feel His grace!
Now, though snow lingers, I can see the green
Clamouring through, and marvel at the sight.
God, Who rejoices to make all things new,
Opens my mouth that I might taste delight.
His gift, through you, renewal of the hope
I thought near-broken till you held me fast
And showed me that He holds all things for me,
That I might learn to trust that love will last.
That, trusting Him, in love I might grow strong,
Strong to give back such love as given me
Growing a self, that I that self might give
Back unto you (a gift both blessed and free)
Christ the beginning, as He is the end;
God of all gods, yet He has named me friend!