|from On Being with Krista Tippett|
A Commu nion with the Earth: Gardening and Gratitude
I think I know how Yahweh felt,
This pain Isaiah knew to tell;
For I have oft been blessed to dwell
Where stinking vines made gardening hell.
I know the feeling that you'd like
To cut it all down in some pique,
To slash and burn, to cut and strike,
Since weeds nor vines grow never meek.
But then you take another breath,
And cultivate with love and care,
For weeds, nor vines, nor garden's death
Can make your essence, you forswear.
The Lord would still a garden tend
Where fruits of love and kindness grow,
And cultivates for that sole end,
Since, "It was good" is all God knows.
Scott L. Barton
Let me sing for my beloved
my love-song concerning his vineyard:
My beloved had a vineyard on a very fertile hill.
He dug it and cleared it of stones,
and planted it with choice vines;
he built a watchtower in the midst of it,
and hewed out a wine vat in it;
he expected it to yield grapes,
but it yielded wild grapes.
And now, inhabitants of Jerusalem
and people of Judah,
judge between me
and my vineyard.
What more was there to do for my vineyard
that I have not done in it?
When I expected it to yield grapes,
why did it yield wild grapes?
And now I will tell you
what I will do to my vineyard.
I will remove its hedge,
and it shall be devoured;
I will break down its wall,
and it shall be trampled down.
I will make it a waste;
it shall not be pruned or hoed,
and it shall be overgrown with briers and thorns;
I will also command the clouds
that they rain no rain upon it.
For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts
is the house of Israel,
and the people of Judah
are his pleasant planting;
he expected justice, but saw bloodshed;
righteousness, but heard a cry!
+ + +
Interpreting the Present Time
Don't rock the boat, they always say,
These things always take time;
End slavery? Let women vote?
Or blacks? Oh, that's a crime
To jump the gun, get people hurt,
Pit brother against brother;
How odd that Jesus knew these things,
But rather than another
Delaying word, he longs for fire!
His grace means not peacekeeping,
But rather, making peace for all!
For God is never sleeping
Whene'er one's siblings get short shrift
But you think things are cool -
You'll want to wake up, then, and not
Have Jesus call you fool!
Scott L. Barton
“I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! I have a baptism with which to be baptized, and what stress I am under until it is completed! Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division! From now on five in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three; they will be divided: father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”
He also said to the crowds, “When you see a cloud rising in the west, you immediately say, ‘It is going to rain’; and so it happens. And when you see the south wind blowing, you say, ‘There will be scorching heat’; and it happens. You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of earth and sky, but why do you not know how to interpret the present time?"