Psalm 26

a poetic reinterpretation

Written in contrapuntal voice to Psalm 26 | Revised Common Lectionary for Proper 17 (22) Year A (Alternate Psalm)|Sunday, August 30

two hands with palms open against dark background

Look on me with the eyes of Love.
When I open my hands
like this
let that be a signal to you
that I have opened my heart
to you as well.
It isn’t easy for me to do
to let you in like this
to invite you to know me
from the inside-out
(as if you didn’t already).
See what I do?
As soon as I invite you in,
I clamp down again–
start trying to justify myself.
I want you to notice all the ways
I’ve tried to fix myself.
I parade out my spiritual practices
as if they were accomplishments.
I set them out before you
as if to say, “Look at me!
(Don’t look at me!)
See how much I care, I love,
I try, I work, I…, I…, I…
I’m not like them.
Am I?”
What a lonely, barren place,
my congregation of one.

Then you say it back to me:
Look at me with the eyes of Love
(Not fear, dear one.)
When I open my hands
like this
let that be a signal to you
that I have opened my heart
to you as well–
and I let you in.
No need to justify yourself.
Within me,
I think you’ll be surprised to find,
the whole world is gathered.

-Jennifer W. Davidson

Photo by Milada Vigerova on Unsplash

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