(Written while reading Side By Side: Walking With Others in Wisdom and Love by Edward T. Welch)
My Father, why are You far away?
I don’t see You near to provide for me.
I ask day and night for what I need;
You are silent.
Yet I know that You are set apart:
The incense of Your people’s prayers enters Your throne room.
In You they have trusted,
And You have always shown up.
They cried for help, and You provided;
Their trust in You was never disappointed.
But I am like a little roach,
Creeping, cowering, dirty before You,
Having nothing, in need of all things.
Will You rescue me?
Do You delight in me?
Still this I know: You are my Maker.
You cared for me from the time I was born.
From birth I have depended on You, my God;
Where else can I go?
Come near to me again, now in my trouble.
You are my only help.
Like a circle of empty wagons my needs surround me,
They hem me in with no way out.
They creak and whine in the wind,
Dry, bare, mocking my empty hands.
My hands are empty!
My heart melts: fear, oppression,
Despair in a desperate land.
My mouth is dry, my lips are cracked,
Here there is only dust.
How can I live?
The vultures will find my dead body,
Bandits will raid my possessions.
Nothing is left to me!
How will I survive?
But You, my Father, are with me;
You know everything I need.
Run to my rescue,
Spring up in this howling waste.
You won’t let the wild bull gore me;
You won’t let coyotes ambush.
I will speak Your name to my brothers,
In Your terrain I will speak Your praise,
Because You are faithful.
You hear my every word,
Your face is turned toward me to listen and to act.
You hold all my tears,
And You stand up to defend me.
My brothers, praise the Lord our Rescuer,
My sisters, the Lord our Provider!
He redeems every part of our lack.
He hears and defends the destitute.
We will eat together and be satisfied,
Together we will rejoice in the Lord!
You are our glory and our joy.
In Your presence we find water and food;
You give us all we need.
All earth will see Your salvation come.
Every family under heaven will one day praise You,
Our Father, our Shepherd, our King.
You rule over us with severity and grace;
Dead or alive, all will see and worship.
All will bow down and do homage.
For You give life, and in You we find life.
We will tell our children;
They will come with us to declare Your praise,
For You are good, and all You do is good,
And You have done it.