Friday, January 26, 2018

"O my thirsting soul desires,and longeth after thee!": Singing the prayer of Psalm 143:6-8

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Psalm 143 (ii) :6-8

6  Lo, I do stretch my hands
       To thee, my help alone;
    For thou well understands
       All my complaint and moan:
    My thirsting soul desires,
       And longeth after thee,
    As thirsty ground requires
       With rain refreshed to be.

 7  Lord, let my pray'r prevail,
       To answer it make speed;
    For, lo, my sp'rit doth fail:
       Hide not thy face in need;
    Lest I be like to those
       That do in darkness sit,
    Or him that downward goes
       Into the dreadful pit.

 8  Because I trust in thee,
       O Lord, cause me to hear
    Thy loving-kindness free,
       When morning doth appear:
    Cause me to know the way
       Wherein my path should be;
    For why, my soul on high
       I do lift up to thee.

Prayer
Behold, I stand poor and naked before Thee, requiring grace, and imploring mercy. Refresh the hungry suppliant, kindle my coldness with the fire of Thy love, illuminate my blindness with the brightness of Thy presence. 

Turn thou all earthly things into bitterness for me, all grievous and contrary things into patience, all things worthless and created into contempt and oblivion. Lift up my heart unto Thee in Heaven, and suffer me not to wander over the earth. Be Thou alone sweet unto me from this day forward for ever, because Thou alone art my meat and drink, my love and joy, my sweetness and my whole good.

Oh that Thou wouldest altogether by Thy presence, kindle, consume, and transform me into Thyself; that I may be made one spirit with Thee, by the grace of inward union, and the melting of earnest love! Suffer me not to go away from Thee hungry and dry; but deal mercifully with me, as oftentimes Thou hast dealt wondrously with Thy saints. What marvel if I should be wholly kindled from Thee, and in myself should utterly fail, since Thou art fire always burning and never failing, love purifying the heart and enlightening the understanding. In Jesus' name. Amen.


-The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas a Kempis