compassion

cassatt fruit.jpg

Mary Cassatt

Upon what thing beautiful shall my gaze alight? Something in a shallow place that is tempting and alluring? Where soon after a determined arrival, there is acute disappointment and an unsatisfied feeling of despair accompanied with an ugliness wrought from all things faded. I thought once the glimmer of the lonely moon which shone upon the path I walked to beautiful things was sufficient. In the end, I only found a light-hearted fool with a condescending laugh, making merriment at my poor expense. From what source does true beauty arise and please both the eye and the heart? Shallow is the dilemma of we who seek where vanity leads.
Yet time’s very nature and true essence feeds my confidence. If one bad moment is endured, soon a good moment shall follow. I found this untrue. For following the shallow host I first approached, there was a steep slope of sand and eroded granite so fascinating from afar but in reality bearing characteristic of a rude and tawdry fellow. He begs rest from weary seekers. I fruitlessly with unforeseen gullibility climb to reach him only to slip farther away from his outreaching hand. Temptation wishes company yet always taunts – just a bit out of reach.
I seek beauty to fill emptiness and I wonder if I might look deep into smooth onyx and find my reflection. Alas not! For Self-absorption is a narrow and egotistical one. I have seen the smirk of falsehood on the face of his invitation to self-gratification. Soon light turns to dark and beauty wrinkles and fades. Beauty is only skin deep, he lies.

Only if eyes seek beauty for the sake of self-satisfaction, I wonder…

Let my eyes fall upon the Lord. Return focus to Him. Gaze into His eyes for He always returns a welcoming light and a smiling heart. He shows me that beauty is not the shine of polished stone or the glimmer of the moonlight upon the still waters, but is the cry of your longing soul to meet with a compassionate spirit. It is seeing your vulnerable heart through a veil trying to conceal pain, but unable to, to the discerning eye. Beautiful is the soul that first shines and then urges the face to light up. The true beauty is a flame lit from the depths of the heart where only God has been to dust off things of old and reorganize things forgotten and unremembered. I have seen those things and cast the hurtful and malicious fragments of the past that attempt to carve me from the inside out, upon the shoulders of a willing Host.
The Spirit gives me eyes to see your truth and gives me motivation to ask if I should petition to God your needs over my own. How lovely your heart. I see you for what is inside where depth beyond shadows holds treasures of purity and unveiled light that is the beginning of time and the seed sown of God. Grow seed. Sprout and come to light and show life. Show that a torn veil reveals the inner room of your heart. Do not worry or fear, I am there and I will hold you forever.

(c) 2014 rick stassi

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in passages

“Valery-sur-Somme” Artist: Degas

there are passages we traipse through
where lessons are learned
even in impossible darkness
interrupted by a lucid glimmer of hope.

a page is turned in a book of life
with trials passing by lying on my back
on green leas with you
and cloudless days with endless azure.

looking through a glass darkly
here i know change leads to clarity and
in clarity is the face of God where
I shall see myself as He has always seen me.
How romantic are words of Life
akin with warm spring sun
on my skin.

O love how you bind when
compassion holds sway
and harmonic measures with
melody flawless in times precious
Our hands are clasped in this.

The sound of a stream pouring
busily overs smooth rocks
emitting cool mist and a lullaby
of gentle sounds from which within
many voices can be deciphered
declaring all of cherished
voices and remembered songs.

I miss times of old
I hope to replay some of them
in reflective memory
and to dream of things to come.

tears of joy are the elixir
from tepid days in apathy
forgotten now in passages
to a new life now and forever.

(c) rick stassi

O Poor Man

Rembrandt

O poor man you so quickly give up
when diverse atmosphere
shrouds an otherwise happy
moment grasped onto as securely
as climbing a rope of cascading sand.

Life is nothing more than a
failed memory, joy faded,
peace penetrated, melody unresolved
in chords connected to hope in your
unsettled soul’s symphony.

Existential nightmare of
a vacant horizon accepting
your last step – the only hope
there must be something
in your self-convincing argument

I pity you yet i love you.
In your eyes I see the redness of
many tears and the preponderance
of failure to find purpose
in a world that demands it.

I can offer a hand
so to reassure you in your dread
in that moment when
argument does not convince,
that there is hope.

Alas, your arrogant rejection
opts for the weight of the world upon
shoulders of hope certainly lost.
Your cries of pain and loathing
fearing the next certain moment.

Know poor man –
the curious will seek
and the cynical shall retreat
but the finder always rests and
the outstretched hand of God

With peering eyes of peace
He shall surely inspire you
with an eternal perspective
begging you poor man
to never give up.

(c) 2015 rick stassi

streams

Klee5
The warming Sun so melts the snow
To drop a tear to the ground below
Warranted thaw such drops will cause
Giving Winter a needed pause

Tiny tears then join as one
A rivulet has now begun
Without anxiousness where gravity draws
This is the way of obedient thaws

Many more join to form cool streams
These tears remembered in all our dreams
For as tomorrow seems so far away
Let tears intertwine without delay

The children are walking hand in hand
A rivulet of sorts, a stream’s demand
O how lovely to be among these tears
Many together captures fears

And kindly, gently walk beside
The tear whose woes are further cried
Because as one is drawn upon our heart
The stream to joy will surely start.

(c) 2015 Rick Stassi

beautiful

Fritillaries by Van Gogh.jpg
Upon what thing beautiful shall my gaze alight? Something in a shallow place that is tempting and alluring? Where soon after a determined arrival, there is acute disappointment and an unsatisfied feeling of despair accompanied with an ugliness wrought from all things faded. I thought once the glimmer of the lonely moon which shone upon the path I walked to beautiful things was sufficient. In the end, I only found a light-hearted fool with a condescending laugh, making merriment at my poor expense. From what source does true beauty arise and please both the eye and the heart? Shallow is the dilemma of we who seek where vanity leads.

Yet as time’s very nature and true essence feeds my confidence: if one bad moment is endured, soon a good moment shall follow. I found this untrue. For following the shallow host I first approached, there was a steep slope of sand and eroded granite so fascinating from afar but in reality bearing characteristic of a rude and tawdry fellow. He begs rest from weary seekers. I fruitlessly with unforeseen gullibility climb to reach him only to slip farther away from his outreaching hand. Temptation wishes company yet always taunts – just a bit out of reach.

I seek beauty to fill emptiness and I wonder if I might look deep into smooth onyx and find my reflection. Alas not! For Self-absorption is narrow and egotistical one. I have seen the smirk of falsehood on the face of his invitation to self-gratification. Soon light turns to dark and beauty wrinkles and fades. Beauty is only skin deep, he lies.

Only if eyes seek beauty for the sake of self-satisfaction, I wonder…

Let my eyes fall upon the Lord. Return focus to Him. Gaze into His eyes for He always returns a welcoming light and a smiling heart. He shows me that beauty is not the shine of polished stone or the glimmer of the moonlight upon the still waters, but is the cry of your longing soul to meet with a compassionate spirit. It is seeing your vulnerable heart through a veil trying to conceal pain, but unable to, to the discerning eye. Beautiful is the soul that first shines and then urges the face to light up. The true beauty is a flame lit from the depths of the heart where only God has been to dust off things of old and reorganize things forgotten and unremembered. I have seen those things and cast the hurtful and malicious fragments of the past that attempt to carve me from the inside out, upon the shoulders of a willing Host.

The Spirit gives me eyes to see your truth and gives me motivation to ask if I should petition to God your needs over my own. How lovely your heart. I see you for what is inside where depth beyond shadows holds treasures of purity and unveiled light that is the beginning of time and the seed sown of God. Grow seed. Sprout and come to light and show life. Show that a torn veil reveals the inner room of your heart. Do not worry or fear, I am there and I will hold you forever.

(c) 2014 Rick Stassi

upon green leas

wheat

“How optimistic the fields that grow
To appreciative eyes the fruit they show
Diligent is the northern breeze
Laying unfetter’d life over these…”

Diligent breeze virtuously
Surrounding the ones who seek
Above horizon’s razor-edge line and
Over mountain’s pleading peak.

Contrarily meandering, pitifully seen,
The anemic lights –
Of those eyes peering
Throughout  lifeless nights.

Under shallow stones
They seek some way.
But, alas, another turned stone,
Another sullen some day…

Who wonders, my thoughts urge,
How optimism grows?
When routinely consumed,
With pessimistic throes.

Hold fast this offered warm embrace!
Lovely pale lights,
I won’t let you disappear
Into black-ink nights.

For diligent is
The northern breeze
Hope binds death and
Gives life and rest upon green leas.

Judgement Corrupting Love

Phillip Anthony

Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each one’s praise will come from God.
1 Corinthians 4:5

There is a time that God has appointed that will be utilized for judgement upon our hearts. It is in this appointed time that it is reserved for the Lord, and I surmise, in a personal place with Him. This is the time the Lord will make and He only knows. So, we place our corruptible thoughts outside – burned and ashes blown away. We have a purpose of conveyors of truth and light, and love. Not in unscrupulous judgement at the folly of corruption. Judgement corrupts our love. It corrupts our yearning to give grace to those in our midst-place before us just so we can test our trust and act in God’s will.

We have a problem. In our nature, we lower our guard and the enemy will steal our desire to do God’s work. We replace conveying grace with thoughts of disdain toward another. Many times it is only outward appearance that forms our opinion. Resist this ploy of the enemy. Jesus will return, He will expose their hearts fully, and it will be God that praises and says “Well done, good and faithful servant”. Our goal.

Do not confuse judgement with discernment. If we discern through the Lord’s tugging at our heart, that someone is of questionable character. Seek refuge as it may affect our well-being. This is judging a situation not the inner character of a person. Your deeper relationship with God will lend clarity to these time. You will have compassion, but you will not blindly walk into danger.

The counsels of our heart is “purpose” as translated from Greek or “guarded thoughts” as defined in the dictionary. Both ways describe an intent in our heart. Much our intentions and thoughts are hidden deep in the darkness of our heart. We seek the light of God to expose these places, but we understand it is a lifelong journey with God molding our character and  perfecting our heart.

Therefore, understand the role we have and God’s role. We are commissioned to love, we are bound in grace and give grace to others. Scripture says:

9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, 10 that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ,..” Phi 1:9,10

God will praise each of us according to the counsels or intentions in our heart. We shall not intervene in His plan by judging first and foremost. It is because we cannot see a person’s heart. We cannot, at various levels, see our own. So, we can’t pretend to know another’s. We do know we have God’s grace and therefore can give freely that which we have in abundance: grace and love. The next time you see someone, first discern danger but do not judge a heart being saved for God to expose personally and out of our earshot and sight of all. That is His way and we busy ourselves in His commanded purpose for us of loving  and being compassionate. This we know. Let God expose our hearts. We in turn, shall lift hearts to Him in compassion and love that we covet. We pray we will not corrupt it with judgement.

Rick Stassi

December 28, 2011