If the extent
of our sacrificial content
is to give up chocolate for Lent,
what kind of a sacrifice is that?
If the inclination
of our celebration
is for a self-centred commemoration
for the current congregation,
what good is that to God,
or anyone else?
If a Holy Day
becomes a holiday
with the holiness left out,
where has the significance gone?
God sighs for the real sacrifice
of working to eliminate poverty and injustice.
God craves for the genuine celebrations
of people set free and of changed lives.
God holds out hope
for those who make holiness their aim,
however far they still have to travel.
God asks us to think again.
© Marjorie Dobson
from those who live in luxury
and despise the poor.
from those who enquire after the sick,
but never visit them.
from those who offer hollow sympathy,
but never weep with those in sorrow.
from those who are severely critical
of local and national governments,
but refuse to vote,
or to become involved in politics.
from those who proclaim themselves
to be Christians,
but only take care of themselves
and their own kind.
from those who preach
of suffering and sacrifice,
but have never challenged themselves
to experience either.
Empty words from those … …
Empty words … …
Empty … …
who knows our hearts,
and asks us to look again
at the sacrificial love of Jesus
and to fill our empty words
with love and action.
Words © 2019 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
Spirited dancer, a pantomime figure,
comic, distorted, misused and abused;
never expedient, yet working with rigour,
seemingly foolish yet never confused.
Crying the wilderness down on your shoulders,
offering pedants the cool time of day;
I would dance with you, by paths or rough boulders,
willing to enter the fun or the fray.
Now in my cowardice, fear, apprehension,
sharing the life that you've given to me;
help me to put away pride and pretension,
learn in your footsteps the way to be free.
Andrew E. Pratt (born 1948)
Words © 2003, 2006 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England email@example.com. Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
METRE: 11 10 11 10
Tune: WAS LEBET, WAS SCHWEBET; QUEDLINBURG