Thorns and Roses

As I marvel before the interior life
In awe I take in how it towers, alive
A work of the will with grace as its source
To enter this climb will unveil your core.

I struggle to say how this image arrived
Something about roses has pestered my mind
But here I stand, Thumbelina in size
‘Fore the massive Rose of the interior life.

Planted at Baptism, watered by faith
Been gifted this flower, now mine to keep safe.
This Rose is my means to repair what was lost
In the garden when doubt cast a shadow of lust.

Every inch I ascend restores Him in Me
His likeness pervades every inch of my being.
But how do I climb this thin woody stem?
How do I hold on in the life-long surrend?

Ah, the thorns jut out strong, they are a foothold
Give me somewhere to rest when my grip starts to go.
Could it be that these spikes, I now comprehend
Are safe when approached from the proximal end?

Safety exists when I stay at their base
My perspective is switched, I now see their grace.
On this end they protect me, don’t threaten to poke
In fact, ward off intruders from taking me off.

And what is the source of these “prickles” so called
But the stem, the wood, the trunk, the cross. 
You see something has switched with the ‘thorns’ of my life
They used to be sources of pain and strife

But now I can see they are what keeps me close 
To my means to have liberty, freedom for God.
Not freedom from pain, fatigue or unrest,
But Freedom to climb ‘til I reach the end.

At the end is the Rose, most beautiful flower
It’s still just a bud in my own spiritual tower
But as I progress, maybe I’ll start to smell
That scent, the beautiful essence of God. 

And this sweetness will guide me straight to the top
To rest in the folds of soft petals of love.
I don’t have the strength to hold tight at the top
That’s why He who knows me gave me ledges to stop.

These ledges, my thorns, are gifts in my life,
I need them right now to not backslide.
So thank you, dear Father, for knowing me well
I will cling and embrace what I once thought was Hell. 

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