Pastor’s Corner: October 2019

I’ve truly enjoyed these past months of reading and studying, pondering and praying the Books of Wisdom.  Knowing the larger arch of life the three primary books lay out has brought me to a new appreciation and love for these scriptural texts.

Proverbs = the Young, Bright, Optimistic Academic, who’s reading to take on the world and all it’s randomness

Ecclesiastes = the Middle-Aged, Somewhat Despairing Philosopher who’s Disillusionment with life’s randomness ponders why even bother with the world. {Everything is Meaningless)

Job = the Old one who dares to ask the “Why Me?” questions and is let pondering God’s response, “Why Not?”

What delighted me the most was discovering the number of poets and singer-songwriters who created pieces inspired by Ecclesiastes!  

Singer-Songwriters like: Irving Berlin James Taylor and Neil Young

Rock Bands like: The Bryds and Kansas, and 

Familiar Poets like: Herman Melville, Omar Khayyam, Dylan Thomas, G. K. Chesterton, Lord Byron, 

  and D. H. Lawrence who wrote:

The race is not to the swift

But to those that can sit still

And let the waves go over them.

    The battle is not to the strong

    But to the frail, who know best

    How to efface themselves

    To save the streaked pansy of the heart

From being trampled in the mud.

 

AND

Unfamiliar Poets like: Louis Untermeyer who’s poem “Koheleth” summarizes the entire message of the Teacher based on Ecclesiastes chapter 9.  I hope you enjoy this poetic paraphrasing of Ecclesiastes as much as I do.       

Koheleth

By Louis Untermeyer 

I waited and worked To win myself leisure,
Till loneliness irked And I turned to raw pleasure.

I drank and I gamed, I feasted and wasted,
Till, sick and ashamed, The food stood untasted.

I searched in the Book For rooted convictions,
Till the badgered brain shook With its own contradictions.

Then, done with the speech, Of the foolishly lettered,
I started to teach Life cannot be bettered:

That the warrior fails Whatever his weapon,
And nothing avails While time and chance happen.

That fools who assure men With lies are respected,
While the vision of pure men Is scorned and rejected.

That a wise man goes grieving Even in Zion,
While any dog living Outroars a dead lion.

“Koheleth” from Burning Bush (New York: Harcourt, 1928)

 

Grace Abounds

Rev. Chellie

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