POEM: Less Than Eternal Question

The Rev. Medley
Had risen
To the highest position
He would ever
It was only down from there
An too common
Occupational hazard
Of moderate
And accumulating lessens
Just falling short
Of making one cross
Facing that less than eternal question
If only Jesus
Had bothered to develop
Better retirement plans

Here is a poem that I wrote before the Lenten season, and now that we are in Lent, I realize that it is an appropriate Lenten poem.  I have always admired Jesus for being “all in” this thing called .  While Jesus' way of being in the world raises difficult , his powerfully juxtaposes finding in with finding in .  Lent is a for Christians to reflect on such things.  For years I have often joked that I have given up Lent for Lent.  More to the , my ascetic tendencies and frank goals of leave me in a sort of permanent Lent.  In practice, I see that Buddhists seems to model better than Christians simple living and prudently avoiding attachments to material goods. has such a powerful and normative presence in , that Christianity, at least as practiced in Westernized communities, seems to have accommodated rampant quite well.  I see the divide between serving God or (worldly ) as primary in my understanding of the message of Jesus' life and .  The conventional wisdom of sensible retirement planning, as alluded to in this poem, seems second to what is considered the good life in times. I have witnessed way too many -filled discussions in settings about more financially secure appointments, health coverage, and retirement benefits for clergy.  In sharp contrast, I have found little traction for providing a to janitors, secretaries, and many other employees of churches or -based organizations.  folks are too polite to crucify you for suggesting providing a to low-wage employees, but the resounding kills nonetheless.

In reflecting on the often lukewarm of professional Christians, often called clergy, outsiders are at little of ever guessing that the founder of their movement was publicly executed by the for his revolutionary, uncompromising life.  In sharp contrast, outsiders have little difficulty understanding that religious elites were complicit in Jesus' murder.

I admire the Buddhist practice of meditating on your own .  This practice seems like a powerful way to elicit the value and importance of life in the context of death.  Followers of Jesus have a profound leader who made such meditations an incarnate .  Jesus is the way.  But the retirement plan is a killer.

This entry was posted in Health, Poems, Political and Philosophical Musings and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply