Monday, July 18, 2011

let Your love hover near


    I call it "honest"
            "emotional outpouring"
                      "brokenhearted praying."

Strike all my enemies on the jaw! Break the teeth of the wicked!

Why do I think it's acceptable?

   I think a lot of things,
                say some of them, too.
                                That doesn't make me right.


   It seems harmless
          a release, maybe,
                            just words.

Pour out Your wrath on them!

     And then
          I realize what it is exactly that I'm praying against.
                              Or who, rather.

The arrogant cannot stand in Your presence.

         (How often my pride rules my actions.)

You hate all who do wrong.

         (I pass injustice every day on the streets
                        and sometimes I perpetuate it.

You destroy those who tell lies.

         (It's too hard to keep telling the truth.)

Bloodthirsty and deceitful men the LORD abhors.

             (Yet here I am, screaming for the heads
                           of those who have wounded me,
                                     making it all their fault
                                           when maybe I was in the wrong, as well.)


               It seems so hypocritical.
                        It feels so wrong.

Declare them guilty, O God!

      Am I honestly praying for my own guilt to be revealed
                                   gleefully recognized
                                                fittingly punished?

Let their intrigues be their downfall!

        What if mercy never caught me when I stumbled over my own plans?

Banish them for their many sins, for they have rebelled against You!

      How many times have I deliberately
                                           turned my back
                                 shut my eyes
                                                      closed my hands
                        covered my ears
                                               run the other way?

                                                          Too many times to count.

Can I demand that they be banished,
                                      cut off,
             and then dare to beg that I be spared?
       Oh, God.
             Oh, God, God, God, God.


           It's a dangerous business, I think, asking for justice to be served.
                                              Maybe I don't know what justice is at all.
                      Maybe my idea of "justice" is whatever seems to best serve my interests.

      When I pray
                        Pour out on
                                   Declare guilty
   I'm forced to look in the mirror,
                      see the ugly truth I want to flee,
                                   know my own faults,
                                                 and admit my deep unworthiness.


            I see in them my own
                                             deliberate rebelliousness.

      I, by Your great mercy,
                      I will come into Your house.

       Unworthy as I am, I throw myself on the only thing that I know will catch me.

                 Imprecation has no place when I realize

                     I am them
                         and they are me.

   by Your great mercy . . .

1 comment:

  1. This is a great look at the imprecatory psalms. Good stuff.