A Faith That Stands Firm yet Doubts...

I like to pass on to you cool things I stumble across. Dietrick Bonhoffer was a German Lutheran Pastor who was a vocal part of the resistance to the horrendous abuses of Nazism. He was imprisoned in 1943 and eventually hanged just weeks before WWII ended. He gained quite a reputation for the courage he displayed in taking a costly stand for a just cause. Yet he struggled with his own doubts and questions. His writings afford us honest insight into our faith journey. These words may have been written just months before his death. Enjoy!

Who Am I?

Who am I? They often tell me

I stepped from my cell’s confinement

Calmly, cheerfully, firmly,

Like a squire from a country house.

Who am I? They often tell me

I used to speak to my warders

Freely and friendly and clearly

As though it were mine to command.

 

Who am I? They also tell me

I bore the days of my misfortune

Equally, smilingly, proudly,

Like one accustomed to win.

Am I then really all that which other men tell of?

Or am I only what I myself know of?

Restless and longing and sick, like a bird in a cage,

Struggling for breath, as though hands were

Compressing my throat,

Yearning for colors, for flowers, for the voices of the birds,

Thirsting for words of kindness, for neighborliness,

Tossing in expectation of great events,

Powerlessly trembling for friends at an infinite distance,

Weary and empty at praying, at thinking, at making,

Faint, and ready to say farewell to it all?

 

Who am I? This or the other?

Am I one person today and tomorrow another?

Am I both at once? A hypocrite before others,

And before myself a contemptibly woebegone weakling?

Or is something within me still like a beaten army,

Fleeing in disorder from victory already achieved?

Who am I? They mock me, these lonely questions of mine.

Whoever I am, Thou knowest, O God, I am thine!

March 1945

Fighting for your heart,

Gary Franklin