When we cry out to God for help we want that help to come quickly, to be complete, and to be a cause of rejoicing. It was just the same for the writer of Psalm 70, centuries before us. Experience tells us the times it happens exactly like that are few and far between, but that is enough to give us hope.
The Psalms are a constant reminder that God can cope with anything. We should not feel guilty about sharing our anger, disappointments or failings with God. God already knows and love us, and accepting that can be the start of a journey towards healing and wholeness.
A rephrasing of the Psalm:
In love, save me O God. Not out of duty, come swiftly to my aid out of love.
I fear for my life. May those that seek me harm be spun around, be disgraced, and lose their nerve. May those who are tempted to act against me feel dishonour and change their path.
May all who follow your path celebrate and be filled with joy. May their shouts of praise eternally echo your love, liberation and glory.
I am without strength or aid, draw close O God. I am helpless and defeated without you; may your presence come quickly.
Loving God, you even love the parts of me I find hard to love – thank you.
Patient God, you are with me despite my anger, impatience and selfishness – thank you.
Calling God, in every situation and aspect of our lives, you urge us to do our part to turn it towards the good – may your Spirit give me the courage, compassion and understanding to do what I can. Amen
The Rev’d David Coaker serves with Grays URC in Essex.