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Psalm of an Earthling

You know in Romans 7, when Paul is like, "I want to do the right thing and not the things I know I shouldn't, but I still fail sometimes."


And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it. (Romans 7:18-20)

Yeah, that one. I don't know about you, but I tend to get bogged down by this issue. I spend too much time scrolling on my phone even though I desire to that less and read my Bible more. I watch too much TV when I really want to dig deep into the Word.


I genuinely have a desire to be in God's presence more than I am, to deepen my relationship with Him, and yet I seem to thwart my own desires at every turn by focusing on other things instead.


And there is So. Much. Guilt.


To the point that I occasionally find myself feeling depressed with thought of "I'm a failure as a Christian", "I've wasted so much time in my life, think how much better my relationship with God would be right now if I'd only read my Bible more, or prayed more, or... (fill in the blank) or even "Why does God keep putting up with me? I'm a mess. I can't seem to get this right."


The thing is, when I spend too much time focusing on the things of the world, the world invades my thoughts and it's very hard for me quiet them enough to hear God's voice. This makes the feelings of guilt and depression that much greater, but it also makes me feel very far away from God.


I was thinking about these things the other day because I was in that dark place of beating myself up and I turned to the Psalms. There was nothing that specifically stuck out to me, I simply read Psalm after Psalm until I was tired of reading.


But after my reading session, I continued to think about where I was at mentally and emotionally. I was feeling lonely for more than one reason. It wasn't just about God. My husband has been traveling for work a lot the past month and I missed him. We were near the end of his traveling and that last week seemed to stretch on forever. But I hadn't leaned into God to bring me comfort during that time, I tried to drown out my feelings of loneliness with noise. I constantly had music on, or a show on TV. But at night, or early in the morning, when the noise was gone, the loneliness remained.


I knew perfectly well that if I would just spend time with God, it would help. I KNEW it would, and yet I didn't do it. And mid-week I found myself feeling far away from God, reading through the Psalms and longing for the comfort I knew God could bring me.


And I thought "My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?" Because how many Psalms talk about God being far away? How many times does David cry out and ask "Where are you God? How long will you stay away? How long will you ignore my pleas for help?"


But I know God doesn't leave us or forsake us. And I picked up a pen and paper and began to write a Psalm of my own. One that embodies this idea of wanting to do what is good, but not doing it. And since my mind was full of the Psalms I'd just read, as well as quotes from Pride & Prejudice because that's what I'd been watching on TV, I feel like it does come across like a Psalm. I can't call it poetry because I don't think I'm very good at writing poetry.


But the process of writing it, and reading it, and editing it, encouraged me. I'm never certain if I will share the things I write, but after a couple of days I felt that since it's all about human nature, and we're all human, perhaps others would be encouraged by it. And the image I have attached to this blog, I didn't take it on purpose to post with it. But as I was writing it, I thought of this picture because it represents having a cloud over myself, but the sun is beginning to part those clouds and shine down on me again.



So here it is:


Psalm of an Earthing.


My God, my God why have you forsaken me?

But I know it isn’t You that has forsaken. It is my own sin which makes me feel separated from You.

To blame You for the deprivation I feel is unjust.

I have embraced the world and let it fill my mind with its folly, it’s pride, and it’s ignorance.

So much noise drowns out Your small, still voice.

It pulled me away from Your goodness until here I am, left feeling bereft, alone, and depressed.

Not myself at all.

Not the joyful, kind, lively person I am when I’m near You.

The person who feels alive and full of life only exists when You, The Life Giver, are near.

And yet a chasm lies between us now and once again I cannot fathom how I will ever make it back Your presence.

What good deeds must I perform? What sacrifices of myself can I make to build a bridge back to You?

But why do these thoughts plague me when I know perfectly well there are no good deeds to make myself worthy enough to be in Your presence again.

 

But God, You are so good and kind and sent the Savior millennia ago.

The One and only bridge between You and us.

And no matter how wide the chasm is that I have created by leaving Your side and letting the world and the sin in it come between us, You are there waiting for me to do the one and only thing I can do.

 

Forgive me Lord.

I recognize my errors.

I recognize that I have strayed.

I want to be near You again.

To hide in Your wings of glory and be my true self in You again.

 

And Your goodness is so great, Your love for me so magnificent, that at the first whisper of my humble and longing plea, You are there filling up the chasm with Your awesome presence and welcoming me back into Your arms.

 

For You are all that is good and holy.

You are love itself and my Creator.

I cannot abide in Your holiness when I choose sin nature over You, else Your holiness would burn me alive.

But the separation from Your presence is like walking away from the delight of a warm fire into the cold night.

The farther I walk, the more I feel the loss of Your warmth and Your light until I’m stumbling around trying to find the path on my own with no one to guide or comfort me.

But thank you God for Your love and Your goodness which brings Your light and warmth directly to me when I’ve wandered away.

There is no need for me to fumble around, searching for my own way back when You are so eager to be near me if I would only humble myself and ask. Thank you, God for Your goodness and Your love, which follows me all the days of my life.



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