In 1995, our local First Baptist Church tore down the old sanctuary (where I was married!) to make space for a new Fellowship Hall.
(By the way, why do Baptists call those buildings “Fellowship Hall?” Another topic for future “Jargon of the Redeemed” explorations? Haha.)
Anyway, after watching the diesel machinery working away at the walls back then, I was inspired to write the following verse, which I believe has something to say!
Cold red bricks bought in hard times,
Laid fast for enduring sanctuary by sturdy believers
As tangible evidence that Jesus saves,
Arranged forty feet high in staggering mortar-bound layers
Torquing diesel engines shriek derision:
How rudely and crudely iron jaws laugh!
Headless, mouthless, naked teeth arc overhead,
Snatching and biting walls,
mocking men’s faith
in sturdy structures.
Cold red bricks
Shaken like overripe pears from nurturing boughs
Pelting splintered, disheveled ruins,
A ponderous staccato,
Now the lament was raised by one observing,
“Oh, the glory of this old house is laid to ruins!”
To which the builder proudly replied,
“Ah, but the glory of the new house will be grand!”
Oh, man! How lost! How vain!
Glory is real,
Glory is not seen or heard or touched,
Glory is not bound by water and mortar,
Glory is not mocked by laughing iron jaws.
Glory resides in spirit,
Glory resides in truth,
Glory resides in the infinite cosmos,
Glory resides in the mercy seat of paradise,
Glory resides in the heart of faith.
Glory is intangible, invisible, eternal,
Unlike the ephemeral sand of
Cold red bricks.