On Word, Law and Life: Stanza X and Y

I finished my exploration of Psalm 119 last Friday night, but, as has been my habit, I had set it aside to review. I’m posting the final  two verses today.  When I am satisfied with these, I plan to post the fully assembled piece on March 11.

John Wesley said in his notes on Psalm 119, ” The general scope and design of this psalm is, to magnify the law and make it honourable: to shew the excellency and usefulness of divine Revelation, and recommend it to us, by the psalmist’s own example, who speaks by experience of the benefits of it, for which he praises God, and earnestly prays for the continuance of God’s grace, to direct and quicken him in his way.” My poetic examination of the Psalm has fallen a little flat in the final weeks. Wesley had observed that “the word of God is here called by the names of law, statutes, precepts or commandments, judgments, ordinances, righteousness, testimonies, way and word.” He thought that the Psalmist had used the Hebrew alphabet technique to avoid tediousness and to help us fix the directions in our mind.  This week I struggle to keep it fresh, and my plans for X have fallen back to W; for me the X is presently twice W, but I may yet change this one.   This has been an immersion experience for me, but perhaps I should have come up sooner.


Herewith, then, my final two stanzas for your enjoyment and contemplation:

WW. Exhausted, Waiting With Hope  

Wronged by others in my life, I am wrung out, and
Words upset me in spite of my judgement, but your
words speak gently to me.
Waiting here with hope,
I find joy in your presence, like a child with new treasures spilling out of his pockets.
Where do I go when I am wrapped up in lies?  Don’t I know when to come back to your words?
While listening to, and searching for, God’s words,
I am joyfully blessed. Joy in the Word!
Joy in your word!
Why do I keep searching for lasting peace?
Where do I find peace, where I will not stumble?
Waiting here with hope, I
wait out my weariness. I study your word.
Written instructions often turn me off, but
I listen to God’s word as best I can.
Written in front of you, with no words edited out,
Whole lives are there for review by you.

Y. Yet I cry; Search for Me

Yet I cry for your help, as I come to you open-palmed,
yearning to understand your words, even as I struggle;
Yelling my questions to you in my mind’s eye,
your word is a life rope, dangling close to me.
Yelping like a dog when I am down, I
yell loudly to praise you, God, when I am hearing you clearly.
Yearning for you in my life, I write these words to you:
I am joyfully blessed! Joy in the Word!
You are the lamplight to my path, and my helping hand, God-of-grace,
and joyfully I follow you.
Yearning for your salvation,
I see you as my great teacher tonight.
Yeast for my life, help me rise:
New life in your penetrating words, Lord, teach me.
Yet I have often wandered from your path, glorious God.
Be my shepherd, and I will remember your words, written joyfully on my heart, and return.

Yet still and open, I am joyfully blessed!
Joy in the Word! Blessed!
Joy in your Word.

© Tom Bolton, 03/02/2012


About Tom Bolton

I'm a Husband and Dad, an Enterprise Systems Manager at the City of Milwaukee, and a Disciple and Lay Servant at First United Methodist of West Allis. I love working beside young people. As I study the Bible, sometimes I feel moved to work through my understanding by writing poetry. I also am going through a process to discern my calling, and to learn more about Christian Leadership. Sometimes I just feel like writing about something that grabs my attention too.
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