A Cry of Distress
69 1 God, God, save me! I'm in over my head, 2 Quicksand under me, swamp water over me; I'm going down for the third time. 3 I'm hoarse from calling for help, Bleary-eyed from searching the sky for God. 4 I've got more enemies than hairs on my head; Sneaks and liars are out to knife me in the back. What I never stole Must I now give back? 5 God, you know every sin I've committed; My life's a wide-open book before you. 6 Don't let those who look to you in hope Be discouraged by what happens to me, Dear Lord! God of the armies! Don't let those out looking for you Come to a dead end by following me - Please, dear God of Israel! 7 Because of you I look like an idiot, I walk around ashamed to show my face. 8 My brothers shun me like a bum off the street; My family treats me like an unwanted guest. 9 I love you more than I can say. Because I'm madly in love with you, They blame me for everything they dislike about you. 10 When I poured myself out in prayer and fasting, All it got me was more contempt. 11 When I put on a sad face, They treated me like a clown. 12 Now drunks and gluttons Make up drinking songs about me.
13 And me? I pray. God, it's time for a break! God, answer in love! Answer with your sure salvation! 14 Rescue me from the swamp, Don't let me go under for good, Pull me out of the clutch of the enemy; This whirlpool is sucking me down. 15 Don't let the swamp be my grave, the Black Hole Swallow me, its jaws clenched around me. 16 Now answer me, God, because you love me; Let me see your great mercy full-face. 17 Don't look the other way; your servant can't take it. I'm in trouble. Answer right now! 18 Come close, God; get me out of here. Rescue me from this deathtrap. 19 You know how they kick me around - Pin on me the donkey's ears, the dunce's cap. 20 I'm broken by their taunts, Flat on my face, reduced to a nothing. I looked in vain for one friendly face. Not one. I couldn't find one shoulder to cry on. 21 They put poison in my soup, Vinegar in my drink.
22 Let their supper be bait in a trap that snaps shut; May their best friends be trappers who'll skin them alive. 23 Make them become blind as bats, Give them the shakes from morning to night. 24 Let them know what you think of them, Blast them with your red-hot anger. 25 Burn down their houses, Leave them desolate with nobody at home. 26 They gossiped about the one you disciplined, Made up stories about anyone wounded by God. 27 Pile on the guilt, Don't let them off the hook. 28 Strike their names from the list of the living; No rock-carved honor for them among the righteous. 29 I'm hurt and in pain; Give me space for healing, and mountain air.
30 Let me shout God's name with a praising song, Let me tell his greatness in a prayer of thanks. 31 For God, this is better than oxen on the altar, Far better than blue-ribbon bulls. 32 The poor in spirit see and are glad - Oh, you God-seekers, take heart! 33 For God listens to the poor, He doesn't walk out on the wretched. 34 You heavens, praise him; praise him, earth; Also ocean and all things that swim in it. 35 For God is out to help Zion, Rebuilding the wrecked towns of Judah. Guess who will live there - The proud owners of the land? 36 No, the children of his servants will get it, The lovers of his name will live in it.
A Prayer for Deliverance
70 1 God! Please hurry to my rescue! God, come quickly to my side! 2 Those who are out to get me - let them fall all over themselves. Those who relish my downfall - send them down a blind alley. 3 Give them a taste of their own medicine, those gossips off clucking their tongues. 4 Let those on the hunt for you sing and celebrate. Let all who love your saving way say over and over, "God is mighty!" 5 But I've lost it. I'm wasted. God - quickly, quickly! Quick to my side, quick to my rescue! God, don't lose a minute.