ISSL Reflections July 14 2024 Psalm 71:12–21 Post 1

Given how this Psalm/prayer starts, “O God do not be far from me….” I think we can call it a Psalm of Lament.

I have read that “A lament is a prayer expressing sorrow, pain, or confusion.”

Let’s begin our mediation with this Psalm/Prayer by taking notice of how it expresses “sorrow, pain or confusion.”

Psalm 71:12-21 (NRSVue)

O God, do not be far from me;
       O my God, make haste to help me!
Let my accusers be put to shame and consumed;
       let those who seek to hurt me
       be covered with scorn and disgrace.
But I will hope continually
       and will praise you yet more and more.
My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,
       of your deeds of salvation all day long,
       though their number is past my knowledge.
I will come praising the mighty deeds of the Lord God;
       I will praise your righteousness, yours alone.

O God, from my youth you have taught me,
       and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds.
So even to old age and gray hairs,
       O God, do not forsake me,
until I proclaim your might
       to all the generations to come.
Your power and your righteousness, O God,
       reach the high heavens.

You who have done great things,
       O God, who is like you?
You who have made me see many troubles and calamities
       will revive me again;
from the depths of the earth
       you will bring me up again.
You will increase my honor
       and comfort me once again.

If we go to the entirety of Psalm 71 we will see other ways the Psalmist shouts his laments to God.

Do you think it goes too far to speak of shouting at God? Why?

How do you express your sorrow, pain, confusion and grief to God?

{ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est}

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