1

Rewriting Psalm 143 – Great Exercise!

So, I was having a hard time connecting with God recently. I would pray and read my Bible, but I just felt like I was on auto-pilot. I got easily distracted and often forgot what I read (even in the middle of a sentence!) If I started praying, I’d quickly find myself crossing off items on my grocery list in my head, without actually ever finishing the prayer.

Thankfully a friend suggested I make one small change – and I can honestly say it has changed my prayer life dramatically! Instead of just reading the bible, she encouraged me to rewrite each verse in my own words.

When I sat down, took the time to read each word and then rewrite it in my own words, it’s like the Bible came to life in whole new way. I think it’s true that God speaks to us all in different ways – which is why I think this exercise is so helpful for anyone. When you rewrite the verses and then read them back to yourself – it’s like reading a story written JUST FOR YOU.

Check out the example I did below. I hope this exercise helps you to connect with God more fully too. Enjoy!

Today I translated Psalm 143

{you can do any chapter}

Here’s the original scripture:

Lord, hear my prayer,
    listen to my cry for mercy;
in your faithfulness and righteousness
    come to my relief.
Do not bring your servant into judgment,
    for no one living is righteous before you.
The enemy pursues me,
    he crushes me to the ground;
he makes me dwell in the darkness
    like those long dead.
So my spirit grows faint within me;
    my heart within me is dismayed.
I remember the days of long ago;
    I meditate on all your works
    and consider what your hands have done.
I spread out my hands to you;
    I thirst for you like a parched land.[a]

Answer me quickly, Lord;
    my spirit fails.
Do not hide your face from me
    or I will be like those who go down to the pit.
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
    for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go,
    for to you I entrust my life.
Rescue me from my enemies, Lord,
    for I hide myself in you.
10 Teach me to do your will,
    for you are my God;
may your good Spirit
    lead me on level ground.

11 For your name’s sake, Lord, preserve my life;
    in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble.
12 In your unfailing love, silence my enemies;
    destroy all my foes,
    for I am your servant.

Here’s my translation:

Hey God, it’s me!
    are you listening?
You are faithful and righteous, it’s true.
    please, open your ears to hear me.
I know you are righteous to judge
    and no man on earth is above you.
But the truth is, I know the enemy is prowling around
    he lurks around and threatens me
he wants to lure me into darkness
    into a place that is quiet and dead.
And my spirit within me is growing weak
    my heart literally feels broken
I remember good days from long ago
    And even now I meditate on Your greatness
    and think about the amazing things you have created
I open my arms to you
    I thirst for your truth like dry land

7 Please don’t wait
    alone, I will fail
Don’t be quiet,
    or else I fear I will whither away
As the morning dawns, may I be reminded of your unceasing LOVE
    no matter what, my trust is in YOU
Give me a sign – where should I take my next step?
    I will surrender my life over and over again for you.
Keep me safe from people who want me to fail
    in you, I’m protected
10 Please teach me to do YOUR will
    and remind me there’s no other God but YOU.
Holy spirit within me
    keep me level headed

11 Your name is above all other names Lord. Preserve me.
    In your righteousness, align me with Your will.
12 Show your great love for me and guard me from people who hate me.
    If anyone is against you, don’t let them propsper
    I just want to serve you…

 

0

Before God was an Atheist…

Before I was a Christian, there pulsed within my blood an innate desire to scrutinize those who were…or at least people who had these “ridiculous” beliefs about some master of our universe…and what about other universes? Maybe there was a different God assigned to that one. I always gave credit to myself for being too smart to be conned into a rigid belief system that I assumed denied science and rational thought. Plus, I was happy thinking that if God gave me a mind to think, why would he punish me for using mine to deny his existence and embrace wordly concepts?

I was fond of philosophy, humor and cussing – which I confess, has yet to change now that I know God.

I thought that pursuing a religion or faith meant I had to give up the reality I had created for myself and the control I thought I had. Now, I can look back and see how God was working in my life, even when I never knew of his existence. Sometimes a flood of gratitude sweeps over my body and I’m hurled into a sea of tears. My world was like an Alice in Wonderland playground. My curiosity led to disaster, unanswered illusions, and complete chaos.

Now that I am a Christian, I struggle every day to die to myself. Those years of compounded beliefs that denied my savior come up to haunt me still. It’s a constant battle with myself to let go of the reigns and let God guide my path.
Just because I believe in God, doesn’t mean I don’t believe in science.

Just because I believe in God, doesn’t mean I don’t believe in this world.

Just because I believe in God, doesn’t mean I don’t believe in myself.

I believe in God who created science, conquered this world, and gave me breath to live out His plan.

0

A Simple Truth

He is Greater than any fear

He is closer than anyone else near

He delights in you and wants your best

He watches over you while you rest

He is strong yet sweet

He knows no defeat

He provides warmth and comfort from the cold

He provides a shield in battle for the bold

He is beyond your reach, yet within your soul

He’s the other half of you that makes you whole

He is what guides you in moments of unknown

He is always there, you’re never alone

 

0

He Whispers to Me

He whispers to me, “you’re not alone”

I’m here with you, in me you have a home

A dwelling that’s safe and always secure

A protection from weathering, that’ll always endure

You’ve always had the keys, just walk inside

Come back to me girl, my door is open wide

I’ve been waiting for you, I’ll never leave

I’m here for you, you can cry on my sleeve

There there my girl, your tears are safe with me

We’re together now, all that’s left is for you to just be

No need for words or explanation

I know you fully, I’ve always been your strong foundation

I gave you freedom to reach the edge

You’ve been walking so far out on the ledge

Is it worth it my child? What’s on the other side?

Do you like the world that awaits, or do you want to hide?

Your choice, it’s all yours you see

Do you want more and more, or do you just want me?

 

 

0

I’ve Been Watching Us Fray Away

We were entangled by our thoughts and cares

Together, united – you showed up without question, constantly there

You swept up my mess of pain and tears

That manifested from the darkness of the past two years

You allowed me to cry and heal every day

By just being you, like an angel sent my way

How do I repay this beautiful soul, this treasure of a friend?

Lately I’ve been aloof, each day from start to end

I’ve been watching us ravel away, slowly, thread by the thread

I feel helpless, and honestly, absolute dread

How can this be? Me? The one unthreading our strands?

Carelessly unwinding the tiny pieces woven together, with my own hands

Watching the clock tick away, I wish somehow you’ll stay

I feel so faded, tangled, alone, astray

I pray, I pray, some day the grace you’ve offered me

Will be sent back to you, more vast than any sea

Truly a sister, my friend, I miss you

The Tapatio and lime to my Mexican stew


This poem is dedicated to my best friend. Pretty sure she knows who she is. I love you.

~ Bethany