Culture Shock

by Carol Brinneman

Bien-aimé, pays d’amour,*

Take me in your arms

And teach me to dance.

You step and sway rhythmically

In time to your native themes,

Moving beautifully in tune with life.

Clumsily, haltingly, I stagger

From place to place,

A wallflower, unsure and feeling the fool.

Your culture calls to me,

Draws me,

Teases me to be one with it.

My mind, shocked by new and unknown,

Refuses to guide my steps, my hands, my lips.

Come love me, show me, teach me—


I want to dance like you.

I want to be your friend.

*Beloved, country of love

September 17, 2004In Aix-en-Provence, France

STOP—and GO!

by Carol Brinneman


Go ye into all the world.

The LIGHT is green.

Are you yellow?

GO is indeed the greater part of GOD:

The original missionary’s Father

Whose Son would go about doing good.

His highway leads through the valley

of the shadow of death,

But ascends to the harvest fields,

white and ready.

Will you yield to others passing you by,

Too timid to plunge into the flow?

Or will you mount your chariot

And proceed with flames of passion?

No rearview mirrors for this trip!

Be fit for the Kingdom of God.

The sky’s the limit!

“I am with you always!”

Now, GO, in peace.

September 27, 1999

“Answer These Questions!”

by Carol Brinneman

Do you not know?

Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God?

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize?

Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself?

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit,

who is in you, whom you have received from God?

Have you not heard?

Has it not been told you from the beginning…?

Do you understand what I, Jesus, have done for you?

Have you not read this scripture…?

Do you understand what you are reading?

“And answer mine!”

How can I know?

How can I hear?

How can I read?

How can I call on the one I have not believed in?

How can I believe in the one of whom I have not heard?

How can I hear without someone preaching to me?

Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?

Look, here is water. Why should I not be baptized?

(Isaiah 40:31; 1Corinthians 6:9; 9:24; 6:15; 6:19; Isaiah 40:21;John 13:12; Acts 8:30; Romans 10:14; Acts 8:34, 36 NIV) November 27, 2004