The boughs wait in emptiness
For their shame to be covered
Stillness broken by cold wind,
Distant crickets keeping time,
And the highway's din.
WANDERER ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH
From my anxiety and darkness I look up to where the mountaintop touches the clouds, sailing across the face of the noonday sun.
I look there and see His hands, from which comes my help.
Oh, come soon, Yahweh. Make haste to help me. Maranatha, One who formed the dry land, the heavens, the water above the heavens, the elohim you have placed there, the lesser lights.
Yahweh makes your steps firm on sure and steady ground.
It is true, true. Yahweh keeps the child of his promise, even Israel. He is ever wakeful and watchful. No sleep shall overcome him.
Yahweh is your protector, the one whose shadow shelters you in your presence at all times.
During the day, you are safe in his shade, and in the night, you are safe in his hands.
From the wicked one , Yahweh guards you. Each moment of your life he watches over you.
When you come in and go out, from now until forever more, Yahwaeh watches over you.
"Lament is the path that takes us to the place where we discover that there is no complete answer to pain and suffering, only Presence."- Michael Card, 'A Sacred Sorrow: Reaching out to God in the Lost Language of Lament'
“Lament is the honest cry of a hurting heart wrestling with the paradox of pain and the promise of God’s goodness.” — Mark Vroegop, 'Dark Clouds, Deep Mercy'
“I am beginning to see that much of praying is grieving” - Henri Nouwen
Late have I loved you,
Beauty so ancient and so new,
late have I loved you!
Lo, you were within,
but I outside, seeking there for you,
and upon the shapely things you have made
I rushed headlong –I, misshapen.
You were with me, but I was not with you.
They held me back far from you,
those things which would have no being,
were they not in you.
You called, shouted, broke through my deafness;
you flared, blazed, banished my blindness;
you lavished your fragrance, I gasped; and now I pant for you;
I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst;
you touched me, and I burned for your peace.
When at last I cling to you with my whole being there will be no more anguish or labor for me, and my life will be alive indeed, alive because filled with you. But now it is very different. Anyone whom you fill you also uplift; but I am not full of you, and so I am a burden to myself. Joys over which I ought to weep do battle with sorrows that should be matter for joy, and I do not know which will be victorious. But I also see griefs that are evil at war in me with joys that are good, and I do not know which will win the day. This is agony, Lord, have pity on me! It is agony! See, I do not hide my wounds; you are the physician and I am sick; you are merciful, I in need of mercy.
Is not human life on earth a time of testing? Who would choose troubles and hardships? You command us to endure them, but not to love them. No-one loves what he has to endure, even if he loves the endurance, for although he may rejoice in his power to endure, he would prefer to have nothing that demands endurance. In adverse circumstances I long for prosperity, and in times of prosperity I dread adversity. What middle ground is there, between these two, where human life might be free from trial? Woe betide worldly prosperity, and woe again, from fear of disaster and evanescent joy! But woe, woe, and woe again upon worldly adversity, from envy of better fortune, the hardship of adversity itself, and the fear that endurance may falter. Is not human life on earth a time of testing without respite?
On your exceedingly great mercy, and on that alone, rests all my hope.
- Augustine, Confessions Book 10
Your sweet Amens rose up to the ether
When I heard the great doors slam shut
On the faces of souls yearning to breathe
And walk the streets of liberty.
Your burning incense wafts from high places,
Whence Moloch devours the innocents
And Asherah her carnal delight chases
'Mid the fallen ruins of time.
Did freedom ring from the once lofty heights,
When your soul was torn, cast lots for,
Mocked by darkness, as your fortunes you weighed
Between Scylla and Charybdis?
Or did you glance at the dim reflection,
Or hear the whisper of the voice,
In your youth ineffably seen and heard,
Now lost in the din of Babel?