16 March 2015

In the Courtyard

Luke 22:54-62

"And the Lord turned and looked at Peter." (Lk 22:61)

Don't look at me, Lord -
for it fills me with shame.
Your eyes pierce right through me
to the depths of my soul,
to the dark murky depths of my sin.
And yet
I need you to look at me,
to see all of me
and call me back
to the love I forsook.

Don't cry for me, Lord -
for I don't deserve your pain.
Your love shatters all my confidence,
breaks down all my pride,
brings me down to the ground at your feet.
And yet
I need you to cry for me,
to love me still
when I am unable
to forgive myself.

Don't go, o Lord -
for if you go on, you will die.
And you are too good, too pure to die,
you don't deserve to bear my shame,
my guilt, my sin - my death.
And yet
I need you to die for me,
to bear my load
and set me free,
so I can rise again.


[15. March 2015]

(Not part of the women of the Bible challenge, but a new personal favourite so I posted it anyway...)

Inspired by listening to a prayer podcast about the denial of Peter (Session 3 on this page) (they are excellent, I highly recommend doing the "Women of the Passion" Lent retreat!)

I imagined myself in the courtyard (where Peter was warming his hands and ended up denying Jesus, while Jesus was being questioned inside), and that moment where Jesus turned and looked at Peter. I imagined what I would feel and say and what just sprang into my mind then was pretty much what is in the last stanza of this poem ("Don't go - but please do").

Maybe try and imagine yourself at that moment: Jesus not even a day away from dying, turning and looking at you, just the way you are at this moment. How do you feel? How is He looking at you? What goes through your mind? What do you want to say to Him?

The denial of Peter is one of those scenes in the Bible that I return to again and again. Here's two other poems about it: Denial (from the p.o.v. of the servant girl who challenged Peter) and The Rock.

Picture by Carl Bloch

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