Fables of Faith

You ask, does faith come hard or easy? I’d laugh but you’re serious.
All I can say no one I know has had the baptism of desire to skip
right on ahead.
And, I can tell you, for me, I can pinpoint some (or much)
   horrible humanness in myself—
What is that? it’s that span between
the head and heart,
   and it’s gaping.
The truth is
   our conversions are continuous 
somehow they slip in –
  perhaps the days are an ever-leaking cup
                always empty, never filling up.
Or, there will be a moment  when you awake to your own strangeness.
Oh, and I’m not even touching on the suffering—
which meets you but in undreaded forms and in the most unappointed  times.
(when you can finally exhale
it’ll hit you that  
               it’s in hardship mostly, that’s when purpose  sprouts).
But, don’t let me discourage you
Despite all the fits and starts,
faith’s a great and graspable Gift.
Just as no one can unravel the mystery of beauty

it’s the same with
    the beauty of the Mystery.
But, we can do this:
   we can gather it up,
   the cup can be filled,  the top can be reached.
It goes this way: Let’s all come,
   let’s touch
      let’s sit around the table, touching,
          let us chew and swallow
our bread of faith in one room
          from one table
          in one place
One in our taking it in,
we are be bound as one.
The oneness making faith easier and so making hardships easier.
Yes, at this time, and in this place, we’ll eat with
   our friends & family who
   ate with their friends & family
   and their friends & family,
linking time and space & all the way back to
    a hard table & a hard floor
   where a handful of hard men were eating with the Lord
when He faced a Hard Time
and whose faith they borrowed—
   a kind of plagiarism.
In the end it cements all sorts of separateness
in our alien identity with the One.
Somehow, He has turned this
into the most
    primary of allegiances of all.
And yes, for each of us faith is different
God’s not interested in mass production.
Yet our faith assurances are ever the same—
for no convert is
     ever the Original.

©A Charity Higgins Johnson 2014