Saturday, 8 December 2012

The Peaceful Shepherd

I am not going to blog this Advent on anything to do with women bishops, gay marriage or the conflicts within the church and between church and state. These things will still be there and still be being fought over long, long after the angels have brought their tidings of great joy!
You may know the works of Robert Frost, one of his best loved poems is The Road Not Taken , this one below may be less familiar but I though of it when a  recent Advent calendar door bore the message, "His name shall be called the Prince of Peace."

The Peaceful Shepherd

If heaven were to do again,
And on the pasture bars,
I leaned to line the figures in
Between the dotted starts,

I should be tempted to forget,
I fear, the Crown of Rule,
The Scales of Trade, the Cross of Faith,
As hardly worth renewal.

For these have governed in our lives,
And see how men have warred.
The Cross, the Crown, the Scales may all
As well have been the Sword.

At Advent, John the Baptist exhorts us, although in less than peaceful terms, to take the road less travelled, while Mary's Magnificat shows a God whose power is not simply a grander and cosmic reflection of human power but something entirely different.

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