Baptism

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"Baptism of Christ" sketch for the mural of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow, 1876

"Baptism of Christ" sketch for the mural of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow, 1876

When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened. Luke 3:21

For thirty years and nine months
heaven’s Son-silent corridors,
its echoing rooms with their litter
of creation and Word-clutter
have been my constant reminder
of His absence.

Though always vigilant
I have restrained myself
from reaching down
to steady His first tottering steps,
held back from lavishing gifts
against hunger, sadness, cold
from interfering with Nazareth bullies
and the enticing eyes of Galilean girls,
limited myself to an awakening touch
in the still-dark morning,
inaudible whisper in a garden.

Today – this coming-of-age
beginning, graduation, birthday
all rolled into one –
He has come to this river
with questioning prayers.
Does He really not know?
Today even the decorous angels
will not hold me back.

I release Spirit
not as wind, or flame or flattening bolt
but as Dove – He will understand
this message of foreshadowing –
then proclaim
in a deluge
that immerses time,
“You are my Son whom I love.
With you I am well pleased.”

© 2004 – Utmost Christian Writers (Honorable Mention: 2004 Utmost Christian Poetry Contest)

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