Reaching Down

Written By:
Dave Hopwood
Bible Refs: Psalm 30, John 1
Lectionary Weeks: Proper 9, Ordinary/Lectionary 14 (Year C)

This poem is based on Psalm 30, but it also reflects the truths of the incarnation of Christ from John 1 and other gospel stories.

We particularly like the image of "you take the stones in our shoes and place them in yours". It reminded us of a prayer exercise where we gave the congregation tiny smooth pebbles (the kind put in a fish tank). We invited people to put a stone in their shoe for a day, and whenever it irritated them they could remember to pray for a particular person who was in chronic pain or distress. You could consider tying this poem with a similar activity.

Extract from the poem:

Lord you reach down into our darkness,
into the pits and the traps others make for us,
into the mire and mess we make for ourselves,
into the despair and disappointment of this difficult world.

You reach down and step into our darkness,
making yourself small,
making yourself like us.

Not distant, not holding back
but walking every difficult mile
every foot-wearing journey
of this Emmaus life.

Every Calvary Road, every Valley of Shadow,
you take the stones in our shoes
and place them in yours.
You limp beside us...

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Dave is an author and speaker who loves communicating the Bible using contemporary media, humour, illustrations and stories. He is author of several books retelling the Bible including The Groovy Gospel, The Bloke’s Bible, and Film & Faith. He goes out speaking by invitation and regularly publishes ideas and material via his website:

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