PRAYER. (I) by George Herbert
PRAYER the Churches banquet, Angels age,
Gods breath in man returning to his birth,
The soul in paraphrase, heart in pilgrimage,
The Christian plummet sounding heav'n and earth;

Engine against th' Almightie, sinner's towre,
Reversed thunder, Christ-side-piercing spear,
The six daies world-transposing in an houre,
A kinde of tune, which all thing heare and fear;

Softnesse, and peace, and joy, and love, and blisse,
Exalted Manna, gladnesse of the best,
Heaven in ordinairie, man well drest,
The milkie way, the bird of Paradise,

Church-bels beyond the stars heard, the souls bloud,
The land of spices, something understood. 
(favorite poem of Mark Meeks 3/22/2010)

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Did Jesus decide to bless our little church because His eyes caught sight of our beautiful new wooden doors.  Possibly.
Or was it the feeling of acceptance that these doors seemed to offer without committment.
He ran His hands down the smooth planed wood recalling a time he had sat with His father.
Learning the ways of carpentry.
How to handle the tools
that made the shelves
that carved the doors
that coaxed small birds
out of hardwood.
A feeling of contentment
came over Him
Could it be that if you
entered this small
place of worship
A love like no other
Welcomed you
Arms open wide
Willing to give what is needed
That feeling of being embraced
Within the arms of all those
who call this their Church home
(how lucky are those of us who have felt this
special warmth)
His hands felt this
His body surrounded
This little place
He made it His
So that every where you were
you could feel His comfort.
2/21/2010  by Gail Burkhardt

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Gratefulnesse by George Herbert (1593- 1633)

Thou that hast given so much to me,
Give one thing more, a grateful heart.
See how thy beggar works on thee
By art.

He makes thy gifts occasion more,
And says, If he in this be crossed,
All thou hast given him heretofore
Is lost.

But thou didst reckon, when at first
Thy word our hearts and hands did crave,
What it would come to at the worst
To save.

Perpetual knockings at thy door,
Tears sullying thy transparent rooms,
Gift upon gift, much would have more,
And comes.

This not withstanding, thou wenst on,
And didst allow us all our noise:
Nay thou hast made a sigh and groan
Thy joys.

Not that thou hast not still above
Much better tunes, than groans can make;
But that these country-airs thy love
Did take.

Wherefore I cry, and cry again;
And in no quiet canst thou be,
Till I a thankful heart obtain
Of thee:

Not thankful, when it pleaseth me;
As if thy blessings had spare days:
But such a heart, whose pulse may be
Thy praise.

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How Do I Love Thee?   by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

I love thee to the depth and breadth and height

My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight

For the ends of Being and ideal Grace

I love thee to the level of everyday's

Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.

I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;

I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.

I love thee with the passion put to use

In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith

I love thee with a love I seem to love

With my lost saints, - I love thee with the breath,

Smiles, tears, of all my life! - and, if God choose,

I shall but love thee better after death.






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