• J Alan R

Psalms Renderings Four

The Praying Man

Concerning tragedy from afar

The praying man says:

Lord, may Your will be done.

Coming near and nearer home,

The praying man begs:

Lord, spare Your child harm.

Harming his own brow now,

The praying man asks:

Lord, why me?

‘Not unto us, Lord, not unto us,’

But the praying man knows:

‘Lord, to Your name be glory!’

Psalm 115:1a

When You Whispered

The clouds poured forth drowning wet,

The skies filled with deafening sound,

The winds raked the trees completely bare,

And the earth trembled, knowing You were near.

Should I, no less, fall down in reverent fear?

What I remember most is when You whispered,

‘You’re My dear.’

Psalm 77

Vengeful Fame

He divided the sea

And made it on both sides

Stand like walls,

With a dry floor between

So His children could walk past.

Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

In the desert unknown

He led them with a daytime cloud

And in the night a pillar of fire,

So none would lose their way.

Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

He split rocks

So water would gush,

Rivers and streams,

From which they could bathe

And drink.

Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

He spread delicacies and delight

Not found in any wilderness,

And opened the doors of heaven,

Raining down food the angels eat,

And caused fowl to fly from afar...

They ate meat to the full.

Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

Again and again, He turned away

His anger,

Remembering they were but flesh,

And forgave and forgave their


Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

He beat back their enemies

Not giving them over to the sword,

And built them a great nation,

A one without reproach

Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

He gave them a stout Lord

To defend and shepherd the way,

An inheritance in forevermore

And a throne to rule the day.

Still they did not believe

And sinned even more.

Mercy is His name

Grace is His mind

And Love is His heart,

Thanks be to the Trinity

Who stays His vengeful Fame.

Psalm 78

Where Are You, God?

Where are You, God?

Our hedges are broken.

Passersby pluck our fruit.

Our roots are devoured.

Where are You, God?

You planted us.

You tended us.

You shined on us.

Where are You, God?

Look upon us.

Return to us.

Revive us.

Where are You, God?

This time, we’ll remember.

This time, we’ll follow

This time, we’ll obey.

Where are You, God?

Psalm 80

From Thunder

I removed his shoulders

from the burden.

I freed his hands

from the baskets.

I relieved his feet

from the wandering.

He called out

from trouble,

And I answered him

from thunder.

But he then turned

from Me.

He walked away

from My voice.

He took no wisdom

from My counsel.

If he’d call out

from trouble,

I would answer him

from thunder.

I would protect him

from his enemies.

I would feed him

from the finest wheat.

I would refresh him

from all thirst.

Call out to Me

from trouble,

And I will answer

from thunder.

Psalm 81

Justice League

You stand among the mighty

of this spinning orb,

You alone judge those who

would adjudicate,

You are Father of princes and

this earth’s kings.

They do not defend the


They show partiality to the


They fail to deliver the


They do not know, nor do they


They walk about all day

in darkness,

They make unstable the earth’s


Arise, All Mighty!

Avenge your children, Most High!

Bring justice to this league

of would be heroes, Oh God!

Psalm 82

Even the Biggest of Trees

With even the biggest of trees it is understood

they still face the fire that burns the wood.

Men who fancy themselves to be gods,

still die like men when dark twilight nods.

Psalms 82 and 83

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