Son Worship

13 Apr 2023 | Glory | 0 comments

To long for the unsettling, unsetting Son is dangerous.

Saints and Starets,

sinners and seekers

have found that Christ takes them at their word

who say that they want, or would like, to know him.


Holy Fools have met him in the derision of sophisticates.

Ascetics have met him in the desolation of wilderness.

Postulants have met him in the rigours of discipline.

Charismatics have met him in the exhaustion of powers.

The convinced have met him in the darkness of doubt.

The confident have met him in the paralysis of depression.

The self-sufficient have met him in the nakedness of nothing.

The triumphalists have met him in the failure of death.


Whether a holy monk of Athos,

a converted pagan

or a rich Western materialist,

to know Christ is to embrace catastrophe. But


Because he has died, the dead live.

Because he is risen, the obliterated are made new.

Because he will come again, the newly remade will remake the earth.


David Grieve, Wanting to be a Disciple, 3rd April 2008.

Notes from the Compiler

This poem, sent to me by an old friend from Durham (1971-87), was prompted by his visit to Mount Athos, a holy site for Eastern Orthodox Christians. David comments, ' It was an amazing experience and I particularly remember a conversation with a Greek fellow visitor who was on retreat, and was feeling cleansed and revived. It resonates still as I reflect on illness, and I hope it blesses you.'


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