“Therefore the Lord, the LORD of hosts, will send among his fat ones leanness, and instead of his glory there will be kindling like the kindling of fire. The Light of Israel will become a fire, Israel’s Holy One a flame, That burns and consumes his briers and his thorns in a single day.” (Isaiah 10:16-17)

Burning Green Wood

In deep recesses of the heart,
The green wood suffocates in bog:
Submerged, it slowly falls apart;
With pain, decay eats at the log.

For years, she fed the Flame’s warm glow,
With kind’ling that fell near her reach;
She sacrificed what she could throw —
Her heart’s comfort would seldom breach.

Now that the kind’ling’s nearly gone,
She scrambles, in the waning light,
Despite the risk of snake and prawn,
To pull the log within her sight.

With her bare hands, she reaches in,
She lifts the log laden with slime.
The acid bog, stagnant with sin,
Preserved its pain for all this time.

She pulls the log courageously;
Next to the flame, it slowly dries.
With breezes of aridity,
The log’s prepared before her eyes.

The log splits when drying’s complete;
In each crack, its core is revealed.
It is transformed to light and heat —
The Flame consumes — the heart is healed.

Mercy longs to dry and consume
The logs that lie in each heart’s tomb.

May the Living Flame of the Spirit provide us with the courage to uplift what remains in the bottom of our hearts to the healing power of His grace.

(c) Paul Buis, 2007