Images are important. Jesus drew pictures with stories and parables. They can be taken on all sorts of levels by all sorts of people. Sometimes the more startling the image, the more memorable, the more potent. Bear with this poem…
Maybe it always happens this way,
But as I was praying one fine day,
God revealed something precious to me,
Which strained my very credulity.
“Child, don’t be surprised at what I propose,
But, strange to say, I have a flat nose.”
What spirit could be behind such a thought?
Surely a blasphemy was being wrought?
“Your face, my Lord, if I was blest to see,
Would far surpass any human beauty;
Your features, suffused by love’s pure light,
Would ravish souls blest with such a sight.”
I couldn’t accept what I was hearing,
But the voice kept on persevering:
“Tell my children, and tell them straight;
Encourage them so to contemplate.
Tell them my face is disfigured so,
And help them know what I undergo;
I yearn to be their heart’s centrefold,
But end up being – out in the cold.
My children think that I don’t care;
That in their need, I’m never there.
They beg and plead and ask for blessing,
Yet doubt riddles their petitioning.
Their faith is weak, and doesn’t impact;
Their hearts are closed to spiritual fact:
I make the first move and come to them,
My seeming absence is due to… sin.
Their fraught and chaotic lives ensure,
That though rich, they’re actually poor;
The window to their heart they close,
And that’s why I have a flat nose…
My face stays pressed to the glass;
I will never break in or trespass.
I watch, a sad and lonely voyeur;
Each holds the key to their own door.
I know it goes against the grain;
I feel their doubt, their grief, their pain;
But the reality I set before you:
It’s my truth you must attune to.
In giving you true freedom of will,
I bestow what only love can instil;
The cost of such dignity is great:
I know – I became incarnate.
Now and then, if someone lets me in,
I bring gifts of grace in profusion.
Never outdone in generosity;
I’m through the door with alacrity!
Children – I bless their simplicity;
They haven’t yet grasped their inner key.
Adulthood though, masters and constrains;
My pain against the pane remains.
So tell the world about my flat nose;
All men have choice to say their NOs.
But in the end I hold the masterkey:
Life after death for all eternity.”