July 25


The Basement

I’m baaaack. Yes, it’s been a while. But I wanted to share something that I wrote at a retreat I was on. We had a workshop on writing poetry and I’m no poet, but I had just given a talk about shame and the imagery that stuck with me was the impetus for the following poem. I’ve been asked to share it, so here goes.

The Basement

No, you can’t go down there,
See, the steps creak and moan;
And what you may discover
Is best left unknown.

Down there, carefully hidden
In the shadows, I’ve tucked
All the things I’m ashamed of,
The ugly, the muck.

Like the words said in anger,
The whole lies and half-truths.
“Shame on you,” says my mother,
“And the sins of your youth.”

Giggles during the sacred,
The hate in my heart.
“Shame on you,” says the pastor,
“Perhaps you don’t have a part.”

The broken relationships,
The one step too far.
“Shame on you,” says myself,
“Can’t you see who you are?”

No, don’t poke in the shadows,
Please, don’t you see?
Waking the monster down there,
Will devour up me!

“But we must,” you say,
With your flashlight in hand;
“Don’t worry, I’m with you,”
And we slowly descend.

I cringe at what you’ll see
With your light, in the glow.
But you gently whisper, “Sweet
child, I already know.”

And your beam floods the room,
But nothing’s there! Not a trace.
I see now—shame can’t survive
In the light of your grace.

Being Human connection: As humans, we all have things we are ashamed of and sometimes feel like our problems will separate us from God. Yet in Christ, we are fully known, and fully accepted.