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temple thoughts, each year

5 Sep

Samuel was in the Temple and he was surrounded by evil. 1 Samuel 2 speaks of Eli’s sons,

“Eli’s sons were scoundrels; they had no regard for the Lord Now it was the practice of the priests that, whenever any of the people offered a sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come with a three-pronged fork in his hand while the meat was being boiled and would plunge the fork into the pan or kettle or caldron or pot. Whatever the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. This is how they treated all the Israelites who came to Shiloh. But even before the fat was burned, the priest’s servant would come and say to the person who was sacrificing, “Give the priest some meat to roast; he won’t accept boiled meat from you, but only raw.”

 If the person said to him, “Let the fat be burned first, and then take whatever you want,” the servant would answer, “No, hand it over now; if you don’t, I’ll take it by force.”

 This sin of the young men was very great in the Lord’s sight, for they were treating the Lord’s offering with contempt.

 But Samuel was ministering before the Lord—a boy wearing a linen ephod.  Each year his mother made him a little robe and took it to him when she went up with her husband to offer the annual sacrifice.  Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife, saying, “May the Lord give you children by this woman to take the place of the one she prayed for and gave to the Lord.” Then they would go home.  And the Lord was gracious to Hannah; she gave birth to three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the Lord.”

Each year

When I read the word, I ask Him to speak to me. I usually hear the word through specific words; images; or patterns. With the phrase, Each year

I have all three voices in one. A little boy whose Mum dedicated to God for Temple service remmebered Samuel, her son, each year. I can picture the lovingly made linen each year changing, yet a treasure Samuel wears before God. He serves Him, his mum, and the temple each year and every day. The patterns of yearly love, honouring and scarifice is in, on this lined ephod.


When all is evil, all is wrong, look to a child to lead with love. “Meanwhile, the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the Lord.” They will lead every day, each year in every way.

temple thoughts

17 Jul

Every night you
Walked up to our home
from Hampstead, High Street, up

the cobbled streets up
past the Mary Poppins chimneys

East Heath Road, & our home
#10 Lady Well Court, a pink house, till
knees and body fail then

the 268 bus carried us two

Jesus walked

every night after teaching

you were in your temple
you, dead with the tiredness
of a NYC South Bronx teacher
in June (perhaps they are spent
as you had to be?) spent as a
Widow’s mite

and then rich
Pharisees, teachers of the law,
Sadducees, disciples,
questions, empty hearts,
eyes and ears
people stealing and hoarding

all trying to fill

You walked up
The Mount of Olives
every night

still a steep steep climb
did you sing? Listen to the breeze? Look only at
your feet, your hands?

when we walked by your

Priscilla held the wall and the handrail steep but then we climbed down

driven up by a Palestine cab driver who when ‘I said take me where you would go in Jerusalem’
Drove to top of the Mount

He said ‘I’ll see you at the bottom in two hours.’

Two hours’-pause-

we walked at the day’s break.
Two hours to reach the bottom, the Garden of Gethsemane. A throng of peoples; a garden of olive trees; fence around. We walked, stood, cried silent tears.

You couldn’t walk up the night before you passed’ …he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death, ‘he said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.”
They slept. You sweated blood.

We had climbed down your Mount the dawn of our first Jerusalem day.
Our driver was there.

You had one more cross to climb; but
Not that night.

but You had climbed up after, as day light fades

at the end of your days teaching at the temple

I can, could, see and feel, you resting on your way

the sun would have been setting
the temple and Jewish hill top
graves are white facing a hot sun.

these graves face the temple so that they would rise first when the Messiah comes

they were looking the wrong way.

temple thoughts 2

3 Dec

something is lost

some things are always


time, love, expectations,

yes, that is the hard one to lose, the bit that stops the list; the bit I want to lose, lose, fast and furious, expectations

How did Mary and Joseph lose Jesus

at the Temple?

How did they begin the journey home without noticing their lost?

Had their expectations, their need, their care of him drop so low, there was no lost? for him or them?

bring me to such a temple,

a home

where I can be alone, unnoticed

with you