Note to My Readers: from mid-June to mid-August (6/18 - 8/20), I will be taking a summer break from posting new articles for my Thursday and Friday slots. This will only affect my Thursday series on the global growth of Christianity, and my Friday series, the "Theological Bestiary" of birds, both of which will resume in late August. During the summer, I'll be dusting off some of my best essays from the first few years of this blog (a decade ago), as well as my verse play "Thus Ends the World," and re-posting them in the Thursday and Friday slots. All other weekdays will continue to feature new material throughout the summer.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Dare I Decry

This is an old poem, written about a decade ago. It's one of my most difficult poems, both personally and devotionally, but I think there's a place for it. It expresses the frustration of a follower of Christ caught up in a cycle of sin that he couldn't break free from. I'm thankful that I'm not still in this stage in my Christian journey, but at the same time I'm also now grateful for that very stage. This poem can be read in much the same voice as one would take the imprecatory psalms or the complaints of the prophets against God in the Old Testament.

Dare I Decry 

Hear, O mountains!
Bear witness as I shout my reckless pleas
Against the unshaken throne.
I fall and flail within the night,
And He is unmoved.
He has healed others,
And yet He will not heal me.
Dare I decry the King of heaven
For what He has not given me?
He has forgiven and expunged
And cleansed me with His blood,
A price so high and painful
That I cannot question His love for me.
And though my punishment is gone,
Still I am lacking,
      Still I am wanting.
I was promised more;
      I was promised grace
            And abundant life.
Where is His deliverance?
I have wrestled with the Savior,
And I will not let Him go
      Until He blesses me.
But I am at fault,
      For I have disobeyed,
And yet I have no power
      To make it right.
I have tried,
And I have failed;
And I have tried,
And I have failed;
And I have tried,
And I have failed.
I am the criminal,
And I the victim too.
I have fought and hoped
      And cried so long
That I don’t know what to say to Him.
Can’t He see my chains?
Can’t He see that my heart breaks
      Every time I disobey?
Can’t He see that every fault
Is not only a sin against Him,
But against myself as well?
He has the power to help me;
Oh, why does He hold back?
O mountains, my old friends,
I know He hears me,
But I don’t feel Him listening.
Echo my cries tonight,
      And tell Him that I need Him.
My hope rests with Him,
In the deliverance
      That He will someday bring
            To this frail and broken heart.

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