In the course I am taking, one of our exercises asked us to paraphrase this verse: Psalm 42:1 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God.
I enjoyed this paraphrase exercise. Poetry is often the way I express myself to God. So, I used the two experiences I know the best to form two metaphors that are meaningful to me. And I thought I’d share a bit of what has been keeping me busy these days.
For the first one, my children come to me for things, sometimes desperate phone calls interrupt my work and I must stop and listen. I also know the intense desire to ask my deceased mother questions with that sort of intensity described by the psalmist as thirst to a panting deer.
As my children implore my help
Desperately needing my time or resources
So, God, longing for you to mother me,
I come to you, hurt and needy.
For the second, I know that sometimes intense pain is the only reason a terrified patient will come into my office for help. Likewise, it is the really desperate pains of life that drive us to seek God.
As the pain of an abscessed tooth
Drives a fearful patient to seek help
So God let the painful hurts of my life
Send me into your care.