Monday, July 29, 2019

An abundant harvest

Haiku for a capitalist world

Jesus, we are told,
refused to act as a judge
between two brothers.

He told a story
to warn against greed and wealth.
Take care! he told them.

The love of money,
a later follower wrote,
gives rise to evil.

Ignoring others
when your needs are paramount
leaves no place for love.

Building bigger barns
in which to store one’s riches.
Keep them for yourself.

Wealth and more money,
cannot satisfy the rich;
there’s never enough.

How empty the hearts
of the wealthy; emptiness
that is never filled.

Best give it away,
create some empty spaces
for God to dwell in.

© Ken Rookes 2019

Monday, July 22, 2019

A lesson in prayer

Haiku of generosity

Lord, teach us to pray.
A request from disciples
eager to know more.

He tells a story
of a nocturnal knocking,
requesting three loaves.

Don’t ask me for bread;
that is far too much trouble!
(This could not happen!)

The story’s hearers
would have laughed in disbelief.
Quite impossible!

demands for generousness
are laid before us.

This lesson in prayer
offers one decisive point:
God is generous

When we come in prayer
to God we can be assured:
God is here for us.

© Ken Rookes 2019

Monday, July 15, 2019


Haiku of grace

Martha and Mary:
the sisters receive Jesus
and make him welcome.

Someone has to cook the food,
Marha is busy.

On the other hand,
Mary is quite indolent,
list’ning to Jesus.

A gen’rous spirit
is key to any welcome,
but Martha complains.

Lord, do you not care?
she protests, asking Jesus
to judge between them.

It’s all right, he says.
Mary hears my words of grace;
you should listen, too.

Jesus’ correction
is not without affection.
One thing is needed.

It’s about choices,
every day we make them;
choose grace ev’ry time.

© Ken Rookes 2019

Monday, July 8, 2019

The lawyer's question

Haiku for heroes

The lawyer’s question;
a test of orthodoxy,
unconcerned for truth.

What does the law say?
Love God and love your neighbour.
Now that’s a big ask!

The lawyer wants rules
to define loving’s limits.
Which ones must I love?

A Samaritan,
much despised, is made hero
in Jesus’ story.

Maligned foreigners,
and other ratbags, become
heroes through their love.

The Samaritan
is Muslim, refugee, and
other suspect folk

Unlikely heroes
confront our own shortcomings.
Best discard this tale.

The lawyer concedes
Yes, love is the way to life,
true and eternal.

Here alone is life!
Like Jesus told the Lawyer:
Go and do the same!

© Ken Rookes 2019

Monday, July 1, 2019

Sent ahead

Haiku for mission

Seventy, there were,
in pairs, sent ahead of him
with a word of peace.

Jesus said to them,
The harvest is plentiful,
we must bring it in.

Be a labourer.
Tell of the kingdom’s good news;
touch them with new life.

You will be like lambs;
vulnerable. It’s all right;
that’s the way it is.

Those who follow me
must deal with hostility.
It is always so.

Travel light; no bag,
no purse. Don’t be distracted
from the work of peace.

Some will welcome you.
Stay with them, be satisfied.
Bring healing, breathe hope.

It is coming near,
God’s kingdom; we’re bringing it.
This is a great work.

Rejoining Jesus
they spoke with joy and wonder
of what they had seen.

© Ken Rookes 2019

The storm

Haiku of stillness After a long day telling stories, parables, Jesus needs a break. Suggests a boat trip. Let us cross the lake; ...