Friday, July 10, 2015

The Cry of Despair - Psalm 25

This caught my eye ... from today's Lectionary: Psalm 25 -

16 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
          for I am lonely and afflicted.
17 Relieve the troubles of my heart,
          and bring me out of my distress.
18 Consider my affliction and my trouble,
          and forgive all my sins.

19 Consider how many are my foes,
          and with what violent hatred they hate me.
20 O guard my life, and deliver me;
          do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.
21 May integrity and uprightness preserve me,
          for I wait for you.

Who hasn't been reduced in means and threatened with want?
Who hasn't had hope shattered and dreams scattered?
Who hasn't failed themselves and others, perhaps unintentionally, or even intentionally?
Who hasn't felt the sting of adversity, the judgement of others, the hatred/rejection of former friends?

Whatever is going on for the Psalmist, it's a cry filled with pain ... and pleading ... pleading with God who, for the Psalmist, can make a difference, can adjust the flow of time, the pace of history, the outcome of some events.

I suspect we've all been here, in one way or the other.
Alone, if not in reality, at least in perception.
Frightened of what may come our way.
Without hope in any predictable frame.

The cry of pain ... is often the beginning of rebuilding.
When we give up, sort of, and seek the ways of God, anew.

Life is full of dead ends and disappointments, struggle and strife.
Surely, punctuated by sweetness and joy and delight and peace.
How quickly the beauty fads in the moment of breaking.
For the Psalmist, it's all fallen, and she cries out in desperation.
Cries out for help.

And with hope that her integrity and uprightness, which are a part of her life, will be evident.
For none is without integrity and uprightness.
We all have such things ... and she prays that these things will anchor her character.

And may that be true for us all.

And the last word, mostly, finally, sort of .... "I wait for you!"

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