When The Bee Stings



When the bee stings,
a child’s tear erupts
A mother kisses away the pain
When the son disrespects;
his father disciplines,
Trust flowers anew,
Forgiveness blooms in request.
When Torah is celebrated;
His commands galvanize the beating heart
His Laws of Love infuses every jot and title,
Yeshiva lifts eyes to Sinai,
Love of יְהֹוָה and neighbor becomes a Temple.
When Profound Love finds favor;
A handmaid sings,
The Song of Hannah echoes once again,
A virgin is overshadowed,
Magnified is the soul of Theotokos.
When a Son is given;
A Way is infleshed,
A Truth awakens dim eyes,
A Life is revealed,
Magi honor a newborn King,
Psalm 19 finds its voice.
When the Olive is pressed;
Bled is Another’s will,
Stripes give healing,
A thorny crown pricks a King,
Via Doloroso is carved by His cross,
When the Son of God is crushed,
Blood and water baptize the earth,
The choir moans in silent expectation,
Obedience gives up His Ghost.
The Father’s tear anoints a gate through Heaven.
When faith, hope, and charity are sowed,
Crosses are hoisted and yoked to the downtrodden,
A disciple craves love of God and neighbor
The poor are fed,
The naked clothed,
The slave is set free,
The forgotten are welcomed,
Warmth and hope visit the sick and imprisoned,
The church gathers in song and praise.
Happy are the many
When unity is challenged, it offers strength
When friendship is betrayed, forgiveness is availed
When hope is pressured, patience abounds,
When faith is oppressed, fear evaporates,
When charity becomes human, creation finally evolves.

By Chris Clody,


Tears of a King

My morning prayer was consumed within Gethsemane, that dark grotto in the garden where Jesus prayed. His submission to His Father’s will was noted in an extraordinary way. Let’s dare to intrude on Jesus kneeling in the shadows knowing His “soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death” wringing with sweat, rupturing the tiniest of blood vessels, “and being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground” (Luke 22:44).
Any wonder why we couldn’t keep our eyes open to keep watch, joining Him is supportive prayer while we were outside the garden?
Like in the desert, Jesus, that very real and very human, once again confronts the will of His Father, accepts it, is ministered to by an angel, and presses on.
If you’re wondering about the possibility of Hematidrosis and “sweating blood” know that it happens only under extreme anguish. I believe there is even more symbolism regarding sweat tinged with blood outside of the obvious foreshadowing of His passion. His sweat would be a purplish color; that of a king. Like Mother like Son, Jesus held all these things to Himself – even to the point of death. Is this part of our cross? To bear the weight of anguish for others? If we are to be saved as a community within some bride-like concept, shouldn’t we learn to at least suffer alongside those society loves the least?
In the end, judgment will not fall upon our ability to proclaim His Name or even perform miracles, but rather by the compassionate deeds that illumined the hidden Christ within the thirsty, the hungry, the naked, the poor, the sick, and the imprisoned. Yes, in the end, Jesus will know us by the tears we’ve tasted.


Blood, Sweat, and Tears

Tears of a King,
Drop alone within the silence,
Magenta trails,
Etch hallowed cheeks from my offense.

Not mine but Thine,
Whispers the Man of our Sorrows,
Thy Kingdom come,
After death, scourging, and cock crows.

A Father’s will redeems mankind,
For those who taste,
The tears He shed and left behind.

By Chris Clody

Forgiveness and the real world.

Forgiveness is truly a path less taken.  Forgiveness has no sidewalks, curbs, stop signs or lights.  Forgiveness is a barely visible trail now overgrown with grass nearly un-noticed by the passerby.  Forgiveness is an orphan virtue gasped from a crucified man who also happened to be God.  Forgiveness beckons the angry to lay aside vengeance for it curiously does not belong to them.  The history of wrath from vigilantes to our manipulated legal system has proven insufficient and unsatisfactory to say the least.   The action of forgiving proclaims the Truth that vengeance is God’s and His alone.  Although there is a shallow urge that justifies our anger, it is quickly overwhelmed by the immeasurable wave of forgiveness that justifies our faith.  Forgiveness takes a meek soul with the heart of a lion to roar against its own pride. As courageous and difficult forgiving another can be, it is more perfectly tailored for our happiness than the ill-suited vice of revenge.  In order for forgiveness to take root we must encounter Gethsemane then later join Jesus and replace Simon of Cyrene to feel the unjust weight of our darkness.  We must still ourselves and forget our digital day planners and approach the Olive Garden warmed by the lamp of the Beatitudes that carefully lights our next step.  Here, in the darkened grotto where Jesus descends into our sin, forgiveness illumed an unexpected light.  Accepting the bitterness of our deserved wrath knowing His very sacrifice will be rejected while further embracing the following day’s horrific brutality and death is where we begin our prayer.  Here in the foreglow of  the desperate prayers of Jesus our awareness focuses as we catch one of the falling drops of sweat from Christ’s excruciating decision.  We lift our red-stained palms to our unbelieving eyes for closer inspection and recognize this will someday wash us clean.   No longer able to stand in the matchless humility of this moment our knees collapse as we tremble to say, “My Lord and My God.”   Gethsemane is no longer a contemplation but an encounter with unconditional forgiveness.  Here in the liquid reality of Gethsemane, the “Oil Press”, the crushing of the sacred Olive begins which will later burn as fuel for our redemption.   Forgiveness slowly seeps into every rebellious crevice of our past up to the moment our knees crumpled before Our King.  The divine Oil of our forgiveness will soon splatter on a gruesome whipping post before it soaks the very rugged cross you just help shoulder.  The ineffable love in the words, “Forgive them Father for they know not what they do,” ravages the arrogance of our prideful convictions.  If we dare yoke our obedience to the One who trampled that barely visible path nearly overgrown by grass, we too may delight in the residue of His forgiveness.  How has forgiveness colored your life?

Thy Will


I AM borne this Man of Sorrows,

Come to fill your valley of tears.

A Judas kiss starts tomorrow

To awaken my dreadful fear

Abba! Father! Are you near?


I will drink the cup of Thy Will

And carry man’s Redemptive Cross.

I’ll give up my Ghost on that hill

To satisfy what sin has cost.

So Hell can soon feel its frost.


©2011 by Chris Clody 2/8/11