A prayer by the afflicted man who is overwhelmed and talks about his troubles with the Lord.
A Prayer for Help
102 Lord, hear my prayer! May my cry for help come to you. 2 Do not hide your face from me when I am in trouble. Listen to me. When I call to out you, hurry to answer me! 3 For my days are vanishing like smoke; my bones are charred as in a fireplace. 4 Withered like grass, my heart is overwhelmed, and I have even forgotten to eat my food. 5 Because of the sound of my sighing, my bones cling to my skin. 6 I resemble a pelican in the wilderness or an owl in a desolate land. 7 I lie awake, yet I am like a bird isolated on a rooftop.
8 My enemies revile me all day long; those who ridicule me use my name to curse. 9 I have eaten ashes as food and mixed my drink with tears 10 because of your indignation and wrath, when you lifted and threw me away. 11 My life is[a] like a declining shadow, and I am withering like a plant.
12 But you, Lord, are enthroned forever; You are remembered throughout all generations. 13 You will arise to extend compassion on Zion, for it is time to show her favor— the appointed time has come. 14 Your servants take pleasure in its stones and delight in its debris.
15 Nations will fear the name of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth, your splendor. 16 When the Lord rebuilds Zion, he will appear in his glory. 17 He will turn to the prayer of the destitute, not despising their prayer. 18 Write this for the next generation, that a people yet to be created will praise the Lord.
19 For when he looked down from his holy heights— the Lord looked over the earth from heaven— 20 to listen to the groans of prisoners, to set free those condemned to death, 21 so they would declare the name of the Lord in Zion and his praise in Jerusalem, 22 when people and kingdoms gather together to serve the Lord.
23 He has weakened my[b] strength along the way.[c] He has cut short my days. 24 I say, “My God, whose years continue through all generations, do not take me in the middle of my life. 25 You established the earth long ago; the heavens are the work[d] of your hands. 26 They will perish, but you will remain; and they all will become worn out,[e] like a garment. You[f] will change them like clothing, and they will pass away. 27 But you remain the same; your years never end. 28 May the descendants of your servants live securely, and may their children be established in your presence.”
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