“O Holy Spirit, Lord, we see abroad”

O Holy Spirit, Lord, we see abroad
Your flames like hilltop beacons set alight,
Though not yet spreading through the valley plains.
But here at home, in this abundant land
Our fathers, fearing you, had wished to be
Your shining light and “city on a hill,”
Our altars and our hearths have long grown cold,
With few alight and fewer yet ablaze.
Come, Lord, and fill your people’s hearts again
With that same fire you gave us long ago,
That we, and all our land, may seek your face,
Repent and turn from all our wicked ways,
And live before you as your people ought.

Some of the ideas, phrases, and even lines in this poem have been tumbling around in my mind for the past week or so, since I’d been hoping to write a poem to mark Pentecost, but it finally came together only today. The opening lines were prompted by a report from a visiting missionary/musical couple to our church last week (entirely by God’s providence, rather than the will of man, that this happened on Pentecost, which went entirely unremarked) of remarkable revival in churches in Islamic countries.

As always, I earnestly welcome your comments, suggestions (perhaps of a real title for this poem?), questions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. If you liked this, you can follow this blog, which includes one of my poems nearly every Friday, or read other poems I’ve written here on my blog (starting with those linked from one of the “archive” installments, since the full archive is by now, at over two hundred poems, somewhat daunting); I’d especially like to know, as part of my preparations for a collection, which poems you think are my best. You may also share it with others, subject to my sharing policy.

This is also archived on my wiki.


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