Monday, 21 September 2015

Psalm prayers: Psalm 2

'Why do the nations conspire,    
and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
and the rulers take counsel together,
against the Lord and his anointed, saying:
"Let us burst their bonds asunder
and cast their cords from us."

Power: who thinks they're in control, and who's really in control?
It's a key theme within Psalm 2, which also has a strong Messianic context.  Regardless of how powerful the nations, the kings, the peoples think they are, both singly and collectively, it is the One enthroned in heaven who holds the real power. The earthly kings are advised to follow a more circumspect course, to be wise.
Wisdom here is found in acknowledging that they are not God.
Wisdom is found in seeking a humbler path: the path of service.
On that path, there is refuge, and blessing....

Might versus right, O Lord,
and you watch
the jockeying for position,
the posturing,
the pride.
All pointless.
That is not real power.
Real power is found
in the tenderest of touches,
in the feel of water
on foot,
and a towel
wiping dry.
Real power is found
outside the gates of the city,
where the flotsam and jetsam
of life hang,
suspended upon wood.
Real power is found
in an early morning garden
at the open door of a tomb.
Real power is not
brokering fear;
it is found in words of peace -
angel-voice saying 'be not afraid.'
Real power is not
nor plotting,
for when power is real
it has no need of such devices.
Real power is
compassionate, and self-giving.
You, who are enthroned in heaven,
You, who defined what real power is,
bless those who seek refuge -
the ones who walk,
the ones in boats,
the ones fleeing from misused power
that crushes dreams,
destroys hope,
that rides roughshod
over lives.
When the nations rage,
and the rulers of the earth
reach too high and
at too great a cost,
remind us anew that
real power
walks with the wounded
and the weary,
gives comfort to the suffering ones,
and creates a kingdom of refuge.

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