Saturday 24 December 2016

Follow (Happy Christmas!)

I was asked to write a poem about "Following" for a Christmas Carol Service.

The reference to Philip and Nathanael is inspired by John 1:43 in the New Testament.

Happy Christmas one and all, may you know peace and joy. x


We’re all following something

The leader
The teacher
The dotted path on the map
The road sign
The sat nav
The feeling in our gut
The worndown path
The light through the trees
Our nose
Our heart
The weakness in our knees
The scent of success
The sound of a loved one calling
The Youtube tutorial
The sound of a baby bawling
The crowd
The recipe
Someone who’s been there before
The recommendation
The end of the tunnel
The open doors
The compass
The moon
The illusive dream
The holy book
The general expectation
The lighthouse beam

Follow me, follow me
Jesus says, and Philip agrees
His brother Nathanael - all cynical
About how Philip could drop everything
For a mystery man from a scrappy town
But that was before Nathanel understood by this man he was known known
Before he discovered that he had been seen
Sitting pondering the world
In his hiding place - beneath his favourite tree

And that changed everything
This wasn’t following invisible - as one fan lost in a screaming crowd
His response mattered to the one said his name clear, loud.
Not for fame or glory but because the only way
Away from drowning in the darkness under that tree full of figs
Was for Nathanael to say yes, OK, I’ll take the risk
I’ll change my tune, I’ll open the door
Maybe one day I won’t feel lost anymore

Following takes courage
Might mean leaving something or somebody else
Following takes trust
A surrender to ourselves

Following might be easier
If there was always writing on the wall
If there was always an audible call
But sometimes we hear only silence
Sometimes all we see is grey
Sometimes all we hear is noise
And confusion reigns

Sometimes we have to dig deep
Stop, focus and tune in
Look for signs in unexpected places
And with all our faith and fear gathered up
Believe the adventure will soon begin

Follow Follow Follow Flowwwwww
Sometimes we just have to let go
Flow with the twists and turns of the river
As it meanders towards the sea
Overcoming obstacles, changing the shape of the land
Sometimes violent, sometimes gracefully

Follow Follow Follow Fa la la la laaaaa la la la la
Mince pies and holly -
A world away from the Christmas story
Hope and joy and light can seem so far
But when we pause ---
Maybe there’ll be a quiet voice,
And in the darkness there are still stars

No comments: