A Heart That Dances: Responding to Psalm 28

Returning to our psalm sequence we have come to psalm 28, another psalm which calls for and summons up strength and comfort, and, something more than comfort -Joy. For me, and for many others the key verse of this psalm is verse 8:

The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart hath trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart danceth for joy, and in my song will I praise him.

There is a beautiful movement there from strength and protection into trust, and through trust into joy, and arising from joy the song of praise which is the psalm itself. And yet the psalmist is well aware of the struggle with evil, with ‘wicked doers: which speak friendly to their neighbours, but imagine mischief in their hearts.'(verse 3) The trust and joy towards which the psalm moves are all the stronger and more persuasive because they are not naive, because they engage with, rather than evading the problems of the world.

My poem in response to this psalm enters into the same paradox, how to keep tuning into and hearing the music of Heaven, even amidst the cacophony of hate, how to let go of the ego and receive again, how to keep turning, again and again to Christ as he calls us.

As usual you can hear the poem by pressing the ‘play’ button if it appears, or else by clicking on the title. For the other poems in my psalm series type the word ‘psalm’ into the search box on the right.

XXVIII Ad te, Domine

 

To dare each moment’s death, that I might live

Means both repentence and a plenitude

Of grace. Means letting go to let him give.

 

So Christ I beg for that beatitude

The grace to simply let go and receive

From your unsparing hand the amplitude

 

Of your beneficence, to have a heart

That dances to the measure of your music

Even here where evil seeks to part

 

Us from each promised good, and where the sick

And sickening cacophony of hate

Might deafen us or wound us to the quick

 

And break us down. May it not be too late

To turn to you again and start to live

Call us oh Christ, and open up the gate.

 

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7 Comments

Filed under christianity, Poems

7 responses to “A Heart That Dances: Responding to Psalm 28

  1. Thanks so much for today’s psalm inspired poem. It was just what I needed. I shared it on Facebook and hope you pick up some new readers and listeners. Peace–and stay safe.

  2. Alice Hornbeck

    I like the above reply. I want to share it on Facebook too. So glad you addressed the cacophonous hate that seems everywhere. In Jesus we may dance and live.

  3. eleanor h prugh

    I’ve taken some of your words and arranged them for my personal hurt today: “Even here where evil seeks to part us from each promised good or wound us to the quick and break us down.”

    Even where love abides there can be misunderstanding and unresolved bitterness. How to live and lean on Jesus with integrity? Thank you so much for your ministry of putting it “out there.”

    Eleanor

    • malcolmguite

      Thanks Eleanor I’m sorry you’ve been experiencing such hurt today but I’m glad my words have helped you express it

  4. Fiona Campbell

    Beautiful. Letting go and receiving from Christ speak very deeply into my – and everyone’s spiritual journey.

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