comfort, God, God acts, God speaks, God's voice, Joyce Rupp, praise, pray, psalm 16, Stephen Mitchell, The Sophia Center for Spirituality
Feeling a need for inspiration I pulled out the book, Prayer Seeds, by Joyce Rupp this morning. I wanted to hear and see something that would speak of hope or certainty to some deep place in my heart with the hope that it would do the same for others. I read a lot of Sister Joyce’s prayers, all lovely and appropriate for many occasions or seasons. This is, however, a season that we might call “out-of-time” so I needed to look further. At the top of page 167, there was a quote from Stephen Mitchell’s translation of selected psalms. It read:
Unnamable God, I feel you with me at every moment. You are my food, my drink, my sunlight and the air I breathe. (Psalm 16)
This could have been enough, I suppose, but then I thought, “What about people who are not feeling God at every moment these days?” so I found a selection of Mitchell’s psalm translations at another place on the internet. I feel a need to write two of them here as sort of a stream of consciousness: in on-going sentences rather than the traditional psalmody form, as if the speaker were walking a path while thinking/speaking. I don’t know why that seems important but I hope Stephen Mitchell would forgive this diversion from his work. It is my best offering for today.
God acts within every moment and creates the world with each breath. God speaks from the center of the universe, in the silence beyond all thought. Mightier than the crash of a thunderstorm, mightier than the roar of the sea, is God’s voice silently speaking in the depths of a listening heart. (Psalm 93)
Even in the midst of great pain, Lord, I praise you for that which is. I will not refuse this grief or close myself to this anguish. Let shallow people pray for ease: “Comfort us; shield us from sorrow.” I pray for whatever you send me, and I ask to receive it as your gift. You have put a joy in my heart greater than all the world’s riches. I lie down trusting the darkness, for I know that even now you are here. (Psalm 4)