Thursday, April 11, 2019

passion's alms (Luke 19:28:40)

as you pass by and
recede in the distance,
we gather up all that
we offered in the joy
of the celebration, and
we take them to the
money changers, trading
peace for anger,
glory for betrayal,
shouts for jeers,
cloaks for nails, so
we can offer them
at the right moments
in the coming days.

(c) 2019 Thom M. Shuman

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

with us?! (John 12:8)

when we keep
the poor at arms' length,
we can see them as victims,
or those who don't know better,
or burdens on society, or
simply worthless losers, rather
than our sisters and brothers
who could enrich our lives
if we truly let 'them'
be a part of 'us'

(c) 2019 Thom M. Shuman

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

sometimes (Luke 15:11b-32)

we're the parent
sitting by the window,
our hearts longing for a glimpse
of the child who walked away;
we're the kid on the porch
hesitant to ring the bell, not
sure if the door will be flung open
or slammed in our face;
we're the perfect child
who has always done
everything expected, but
left wondering was it worth it;
but in all such moments, we
find ourselves swept up
in God's embracing grace.

(c) 2019 Thom M. Shuman

Saturday, February 09, 2019


because we put down our nets
and catch only a few minnows;
because we look up 
and see the cracks in the ceiling
and not you high and lifted up;
because you have not made 
an in-person appearance to us,
we wring our hands, thinking
we have not done much
when it comes to faith,
never noticing that all you ask
is for us to trust . . .

(c) 2019 Thom M. Shuman

Sunday, February 03, 2019

1 Corinthians 13

we give thanks, O God,
for love that is patient with our foolishness,
and impatient for justice;
for love that does not brag about itself,
but lifts up those whose lives are forgotten;
for love that is not a pebble in our shoe,
but a caress that wipes our tears;
for love that does not mock those who have messed up,
but speaks words of truth when truth is in short supply;
love carries the most vulnerable;
love trusts the littlest kid;
love refuses to hoard hope;
love meets disappointment face to face.
love persists in, and through, every moment,
especially when we can't.
(c) 2019 Thom M. Shuman

Thursday, January 17, 2019


in the crusty bread and hot soup
on a wintry night,
   we taste what grace is like;
in the eyes of a child
seeing the grandparent 
step out of the car,
   we see what grace like;
in the rich soil turned over
for spring plantings,
   we smell what grace is like;
in the whispered, 'i love you,'
as the casket is lowered,
   we hear what grace is life;
in the hand of a stranger 
clasping ours in acts of kindness,
   we feel what grace is like;


(c) 2019 Thom M. Shuman