By No Means The End
This thing that mattered so much
has splintered into a thousand shards,
leaving me dazed and battle scarred,
senses reeling to make sense of the lurch:
Is this the prod of demonic shaft
or angels changing course far away?
I will trust and assume to the letter the latter
and cry, “bring more good from this surprising clatter
than if things had wound their second-rate way.”
With sumptuous grace You turn things round,
till the dolesome rings to a wholesome sound
that confounds my fears and unfounded objections,
my ill-informed slurs and foolish aspersions.
I protest in dismay, ‘Anything but this – anywhere,’
But Your path never leaves me the worse for wear,
so I return once more to cry, ‘Forgive my reluctance,
and cross-grained belligerence.'
All You want is to send Your best,
so I gladly accept Your way with zest;
for where I see only adders
You place and purpose ladders.
When doors appear to close
If handled aright, the passing of this stage
need induce no futile rage,
for adjusting the direction of my gaze
I glimpse the dawning of another phase
that our far-sighted Lord
is drawing toward.
This thing we counted on
is well and truly gone,
so help us softly to explore
the hope that lies beyond this shuttered door,
that in Your great and manifest tenderness
You open with such prompt and ready happiness.
Adjust – accept – move through –
Your resources are never too few
to meet the needs our hearts require
as we pass through dark and wilder mire
en route to the fuller vocation
that will, in time, make its mark on the nation.