This I Pray

Dear Jesus Christ,

This I pray,

I know your name,

I try to follow your ways

I’ve heard your voice, seen your face,

But God,

Please allow me this questioning space.

 

When I first made a Muslim friend,

Your people came to me;

To tie an alarm to their throat,

To swing ringing bells at their religion,

To warn me not be influenced by them,

As if their belief was a poison,

But mine gave more strangulation.

As if my faith is so weak,

It can be swayed simply by association.

Oh God,

Did you not make them too?

Did your hands not form them,

Form the wet clay they clinged,

Do you not catch their tears too,

Your heavenly cloth you wringed?

Forgive me father,

But what makes them less of a human being?

 

Dear God,

When you spoke to not use your name is vain,

This poem will be criticised for my repeated call of sacrilegious insignificance,

Phrases of “OMG, Jesus Christ”

Reduction to teenage slang was disobedience,

Other exclamations will suffice.  

 

And yet,

Your name is used to start holy wars,

To burn a temple down the road,

To reign over others like they were simply carrying out your judgement,  

To chain and work to death: your “punishment”,

To discriminate a class of people already forsaken.

Just because their heads bow to another belief system,

Doesn’t give you the right to snap it.

 

Oh my God,

I swear a lot,

But I rather my tongue be made a junkyard of dirty words,

Than to ever hold a single derogatory term.

To hold toxic means of degradation,

To blaspheme against another member of another skin,

To oppress another nation through selfish congress,  

Let my tongue hold no lies

This I digress,

 

Dear Jesus Christ,

I see a couple care for a child,

But your people snigger at their love,

Whilst their own cup runs dry,

Offer conversion therapy by giving an absent-mindedly handed out pamphlet,

All because their genders correlate,

Does that mean they have to separate?

 

Their paths are straighter than those whose sexualities are,

Whose sinless children,

They left behind,

But those who pick them up,

To care and provide,

Like what you did to the sick and and the desolate,  

But what the lens focus on is their preference of a soulmate,

For that, they’re supposed to be dead?

 

Dear Jesus Christ,

In your timeline,

To be sick was to have sinned,

Misfortune caused by forgetting your name,

I thought you rectified that,

So why does that exist in my mine?

When their anxiety took over,

Your people shoved a plastic tube down their throats,

Emptied your verses like trash down the chute hole,

Degraded your Holy Spirit sacred presence to an injection of antidepressants.

 

When they admitted they were hearing voices,

Your people covered their ears with screeching of angels,

Poured holy water to muffle their screams,

Tried to make a baptism out of ritualistic culture,

But their schizophrenia could never be washed clean.

 

Christ,

Maybe that’s why,

I’ve never found a place in Christian Youth,

Never stayed long enough to play church games,

Associated with outcasts than hip people,

As a Jew in the Gentile’s Temple,

But I rather be a ceremoniously unclean sinner,

Than a white washed tomb of pretendence,

Just to mark my church attendance.

 

Father,

This I pray,

I love your people and your kingdom you built,

I’m not a saint: I have guilt,

Nor an angel for I sin,

No better than any of my kin

But my heart hurts from my family wounds I’ve begotten,

The scars on your hands somehow forgotten.

 

When will we learn compassion instead of condemnation?

Rebuking instead of complete rejection?

Grace instead of legislation?

To submit to the Spirit, instead of self-satisfaction?

 

Forgive your people, Lord

Forgive my people, Lord

Forgive me,

This my cry,

My heart breaks for my generation,

As you broken for us,

But hope’s not lost,

For a saviour I find,

In the name of the Lord of Lords,

Jesus Christ.

 

Set a cleansing fire,

Burn the sin that is in us,

Let us return to ash: where we came  

And redeem us with your gracious love again.

This I pray,

Amen.  

 

-Yuki Hansa

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