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Lord, it’s here again - the difference between what I say and what I am.
The words come easy - I’ve had a lot of practice with Christian cliches;
The pious phrase, the shallow patter of unthinkable platitudes -
Texts for all seasons - I hide behind them,
And, with a smile that goes no further than my face,
I welcome people as I turn away - cold shoulder from cool heart;
Preoccupation with my own affairs that tells others,
In spite of all my words, that I don’t really want to know.
Yes, I’m interested in problems as long as they are mine!
Part of the body of Christ? Who, me?

Lord, help me to know myself -
To recognise, and face, just who I am beneath the words,
To open up to you - to come out from behind the choking smokescreen of spurious spirituality into the clean air of your truth,
And, in the clear-eyed recognition of who I am,
May I know that I am loved, and accepted, and healed.
Then, Lord, I may learn to love and accept, and share in the healing, of others.
The contradictions will fade - my words and actions come together,
Not because I can project a new image of who I am,
But because what people see in me is YOU, and nothing else.


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