All You Have Given Me

 

I love You, Lord.

You embrace me

In our communion of Eucharist.

 

I believe in Your love for the sinner.

I am that sinner.

You come to me.

I am empty and poor,

Yet, You make my poverty Your paradise.

Here I bring to You

All You have given me.

 

Behold Your streaming waters

Tumbling over my rocky ground.

Your light penetrates my depths,

The caverns of my heart

Yield their darkness

To You, O Holy Sun!

 

Sit here beside me in the silence,

As praise becomes

An uncontainable river within me.

Flow from my humble abode

To water Your thirsting world without.

 

Delight, O Lord,

As the crashing thunder

Of majestic waves

Rise before You

In a crescendo of thanksgiving,

Finally pounding down

Upon the shore of my unworthiness.

They ebb and flow

And gather strength

As I remember Your Mercies.

All You have given me,

I receive now in humble gratitude.

 

By Joann Nelander

 

“Do Whatever He Tells You.”

“Do whatever He tells you.”

As this day comes to me,
Moment by moment,
May I be aware of Your desires.
Seeing, in the meditations
Of my heart, Your actions,
And imitate them, faithfully,
And regard them as a command.

May I take to heart Your desires,
To do all You would do
In my present,
That, like a handmaiden,
Whose eyes are always
Upon the hands of her master,
I may do all,
As You, My Beloved,
Doing always, with love,
The Will of Our Father,
In the power of Your Holy Spirit.

2013 Joann Nelander
All rights reserved

Rosebud

 

Rose before dawn,
Nestled life in bud.
Sun of mother-love withdrawn.
Rose before dawn
Life, so sweet, soon gone.
Red flower, the color of blood.
Rose before dawn
Nestled life in bud.

Copyright Joann Nelander

Who really died?

 

Who really died?

I never saw
The light of day.
Black descended,
Of a kind
I knew not,
Then no more.

How did I know you?

All I knew was you.
You flavored my becoming,
Your genes, my genes,
Your feelings,
Emotional rhythms,
Touching me
By blood connection.
All this,
And then no more.

How did I feel you?

Warmth, gentle rocking
To and fro.
I felt you,
Heart-sounds surrounding me,
Pressing me,
Impressing me.
You whooshed at times
And hummed.
And then no more.

How did I leave you?

I knew anguish
As once I knew you,
Your blood feeding mine,
I knew as parting,
Leaving behind mother
As gift withdrawn,
And bid goodbye.
Too young for endings,
Too soon to die,
And then no more.

How now and by and by?

Sorrow and black
And then the Light.
New Day, as womb,
Enfolded me.
Life ended
To begin again.
And I behold
The Face of God.
I live,
And still I wait for you,
Knowing in love,
There is yet more.

Who really died?

©2013 Joann Nelander

Take My Hand

 

Take my hand , my Jesus.
Here I am, Your child,
Too small to stand on my own,
Yet welcome before Your throne.

It is, You, My Cause,
Who sets me upright,
Through and through,
To be like unto You.

All my life called,
And marked by Love Divine,
Under Your Shadow, sun shining above,
One command only, Love!

Who can love without You?
This, too, You supply.
You spend Your Life’s Blood
To draw me from mire and mud.

All from Adam
In human chain,
Hold hands to be set free,
Man from Sin in loving Thee.

Copyright 2013 Joann Nelander

A Prayer in Adoration


Pope Benedict XVI celebrates the Eucharist, a ...

Here I am Lord,
Sitting, kneeling,
Prostrate in spirit
Before You, adoring.
Who You are in Your glory
Lies hidden under the appearance
Of this Holy Bread before me.

You have revealed to Your Church
The wonder, and magnificence
Of Your living Presence.
With Mother Church,
I extol Your beauty.
Truths come to mind
And I give assent.

I am married to You,
O Holy Bridegroom.
In the fullness of time,
I will embrace You
With a glorified vision and body,
But, for now, I reach with heart
And mind’s eye to catch a glimpse
Of this splendid Truth
Hidden as it is
‘Neath Bread and Wine
And broken Body on a Cross.

Favor me with an increase
Of love and desire,

Until my longing tears free
From all that holds me captive still.
I know my blindness,
And have seen my foolishness.
In my poverty and need,
I seek refuge here
Before Your eyes.

Your Truth,
Your splendid Truth, be mine!
These are such glorious Truths,
I can not comprehend them
In their reality and breath.
I can only glimpse them,
And cry out in hope and faith.

My adorable Lord,
Looking upon me now as always,
Gather to Yourself,
The groans and sighs of Spirit born,
Unto Your memories,
As so many Communions
And resurrections of spirit,
As chains of Love in Time,
But always,
Only One Adorable Lord.

©2010 Joann Nelander

On Eucharist

 

Reflection on St. Augustine’s, “I seemed to hear your voice from on high: ‘I am the food of the mature: grow, then, and you shall eat me. You will not change me into yourself like bodily food; but you will be changed into me’.”

On Eucharist

O Christ, I receive Thee
That I might become Thee.
I desire to be as You would have me,
To be, Christ, living Your Life,
In the time and place and space
That is me,
Soul and matter one,
And wed to my All Holy Three.

Come, O come to me, My Christ.
My blind eyes see but bread.
Hope lights my darkness.
Faith assures me
Of what I can not now behold.

You are the food,
That transforms my being
To Your Being,
Though the steps and stages
Be but measured.
You respect my frailty,
Adding strength upon strength,
That the common might be wed
To the Magnificent
Without my dissolution..

Only in union can I live
“Thy Will be done,”
As You, the Son.
Grow me, grace me,
That I might become mature.
Sanctify this soul
So unlike Your own,
That free of Sin.
I be as the moon to You, O Sun.

I want to become,
To be of You,
And by You completely transformed.
I pray that Your Holy Spirit
Conform me to the Will of the Father,
That I may answer
As Mother Mary, “Fiat.”.

In Fire’s purifying ardor
Remove my dross.
Make me malleable.
Impress Yourself on me.
Ready me, as melted wax,
That I may receive the image,
That You conceived for me.
That with all my being,
I may spend myself totally
On the Father’s All Holy Will,
Answering with the voice of Christ
One great “Amen.”

As a desert penitent
May I shed my tears for Your cause in me,
And in the world of souls,
For whom You shed Your blood.
May I complete my time on this earth
Running the race with You as my Way.

Although I am all effort,
And that pleases You,
A thousand efforts
Do not make the slightest grace.
So grace me, Beloved,
That the Father will delight
To see His Only Son in me.

More than a Conqueror,
You become my very being.
May I live my life in Your Life.
Come, O Eucharist,
O, Sanctifier of my soul.

By Joann Nelander

Healing in the Heart of Jesus

Praying for my loved ones and remembering friends of youth and later life, I began to see how feelings of love welled up within me.  God’s love drew me close to Himself and bade me come away with Him.  I feared to leave off praying for friend after friend as they came to mind that I leave someone untouched by His Mercy and Grace.  Then He came closer still, and filled me now with peace and knowledge.  His Spirit whispered to my heart, “Fear not!”  He gave me to understand that all these, that I recalled and cherished, all these, I held in my heart and rediscovered with each rising memory, all these were enclosed within my very being, held fast by my love.  As His arms embraced me in my prayer to draw me closer, the prayer of my heart for all of these sounded in His ears.  For love of me, wretched sinner though I be, He enfolded Luke17_16_LeperWhoThankedHimall within His bosom, loving purely and eternally the image of His Son emblazoned upon my soul.  He drew all to Himself, knowing, gracing and blessing.  He knew them as I knew them of old and also as He finds them now, in the flesh or in the spirit.  His grace is fresh and waters the ground of their present.  He opens a loving wound in them that invites His love and healing.

Great Atrocities Demand Remembrance and Hope

From Catholic Sistas:

The response to great atrocities, whether the Holocaust during World War II, the Rwandan massacres, or our own American Abortion Holocaust must be to remember. As Wiesel said, “We must remember the suffering…[and] struggle to invent a thousand and one reasons to hope.” The stories, especially those of hope,  not only respect the victims of the past, they give courage to new generations fighting to overcome the darkness of the present.

Stolen name replaced by number,
Savaged soul and broken heart.
Hell, a people to encumber.

Blind eyes outside in darkness.
Dead souls dismissed the human face.
Stolen name replaced by number

Rising from the ashes,
Pledging nevermore.
Hell, a people to encumber

Yad VaShem, the vault of memory,
Yad VaShem, the ground of tears
Stolen name replaced by number

Shoah: families, children.
Here named, remembered, mourned
Hell, a people to encumber

Faces pictured in the silence.
Tears cried forevermore.
Stolen name replaced by number
Hell, a people to encumber

Copyright 2011 Joann Nelander

(experimental Villanelle)

Yad vashem

Rose before dawn,
Nestled life in bud.
Sun of mother-love withdrawn.
Rose before dawn
Life, so sweet, soon gone.
Red flower, the color of blood.
Rose before dawn
Nestled life in bud.

Copyright 2011 Joann Nelander

Sweet Cause

The world of men is full of accusers,
Innocent as doves in their own eyes.
Only the sinner finds a place at Your table,
Garbed, no longer in rotting rags,
But in wedding dress and festive best.

The lowly come
And are welcomed.
Choosing a place at Your feet
You invite "Come up higher".
At Your breast the disciple rests.

Hearts make merry,
While the wine of wisdom
Turns sorrow into joy,
Allowing the cross no less,
Sweet cause of happiness.

By Joann Nelander copyright 2013

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