Wednesday, December 15, 2004

A Poem -- Wrestling with God

"Wresting with God"

is one possible definition of the word “Israel”

Jacob’s new name after his match with

a man, a stranger, an angel . . . himself?

what an image

what an obligation . . . wrestling with God!

yet, if we listen carefully enough,

if we live deeply enough,

aren’t we all called to wrestle,

to wrestle to understand, to love,

to eventually surrender,

but not without a struggle

a struggle to grasp, to love,

to embrace . . . God?

* * *

in explaining a particular law of kashrut

the Rabbis tell of how the angel

“embraced” Jacob as they struggled

and so, dislocated his right hip


was it the right hip because

the stranger was a Torah scholar

to whose right Jacob first walked to show respect?


was he an idol worshipper . . .

we may never know,

but that won’t keep the Rabbis

and their students

from continuing to discuss and debate

* * *

in any case . . .

in our embrace of God

in God’s constant embrace of us

we are often wounded

and a part of us is


as we explore ourselves and our limits

* * *

there’s nothing like struggling

with the infinite

to reveal

the revelation that is each of us

as we learn to wrestle with God from Jacob

perhaps we should also learn to ask for a blessing

as he did

a blessing for the life,

the passion,

the possibilities

of the struggle . . .

1 comment:

John Kadela said...

But what is the inner Israel, that community of
of the Heart, in wch all men are angels on the road of life?

I am amazed no one is participating in this conversation.