“You don’t need medication for depression,” the minister taught
As he brought out his chart. “Studies show what you should know;
Nobody gets better with pills for meals, trust the Lord to heal!”
Several mouths in the congregation gave their “amen” approbation.
But the man of cloth saw a sloth in a pew that gave him his cue.
“You there! You look skeptical, not a receptacle of God’s glory!
You’ve never believed, have you? Never received the holy Spirit?”
I shifted on the seat, sifted through my thoughts, and drifted
Back to times gone by for lack of anything to say with no dismay.
“Listen to me, the Lord can heal everything with which you deal.”
Smiling, I looked at him sweating and lying; would I start crying?
As he was flying into an holy frenzy, I was trying to keep my cool,
But my face must have given a trace that I thought him a disgrace;
“You don’t trust the Lord, but even dogs eat crust from his table!
Go ahead and tell me, if you die are you going to heaven or hell?”
With that question posed, I rose up tall and straight, without hate;
Looking into his eyes, I could see the lies, and the roil of turmoil;
Slowly I spoke, not to provoke, but suddenly something in me awoke.
“Sir, God has been good; she has never turned her back nor do I lack;
And for so long now the Spirit has been mine and treats me just fine.”
Already stunned by reference to “she,” the minister could hardly see.
“But you, sir, seem to me like a man who struggles with the repression
Of very deep depression, saying and braying what he wants to believe
Rather than what he needs to receive; a man telling his congregation
What they want to hear, selling them lies while hearts cry with pain.”
Shocked silence hung thickly in the air, blocked any word to be heard
Except mine, so I continued to opine, “You are one sinister minister
And only half-believe and then deceive from your own torn-apart heart,
Instead of talking like a real human instead of balking at the truth;
Instead of being brutally honest, you snootily look down with a frown.”
Mouth open, spirit broken, he looked now like only a token of ministry;
Among the congregation there were a few cheers, yet some were in tears;
“Now all of you listen to me, see, and be enlightened, not frightened,
And I will tell you, it’s true, God loves you and gives you life anew;
Our mothering God her Spirit freely gives that you and I might live.”
All eyes were fixed on me with mixed emotions, but no bit of commotion;
“Jesú came offering light, life and love from above, but what is unseen
Is far more than what is seen, and no one is keen enough to understand
To steal from heaven, nor leaven the truth with acquired fire of desire;
You ask, but do not bask in glory; your task is in your unfolding story.”
Still finely suited, the now-broken minister wept, no more pretense kept;
Among the people, some cried, some smiled, some tried to keep their calm,
Applying balm of prayer lifted high into the air, but some would not spare
Freeing themselves in agreeing with what was spoken as some angelic token
Gifted for them to be lifted out of cruel endless course of insane remorse.
Asked what next, I answered, “Go to cross and steeple, but also to people
Who will help bear your burden, and know that medication is not dedication,
But physiological remediation; fly to the good Shepherd, hold him and cry,
But try to remember Jesú called physicians in admission among his apostles;
And our Mother God has been revealing healing medicines since time began.”