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(A song and a psalm by the people of Korah for the music leader. To the tune “Mahalath Leannoth.”[a] A special psalm by Heman the Ezrahite.)

A Prayer When You Can’t Find the Way

88 You keep me safe, Lord God.
So when I pray at night,
    please listen carefully
    to each of my concerns.

I am deeply troubled
    and close to death;
    I am as good as dead
    and completely helpless.
I am no better off
    than those in the grave,
    those you have forgotten
    and no longer help.

You have put me in the deepest
    and darkest grave;
    your anger rolls over me
    like ocean waves.
You have made my friends turn
    in horror from me.
I am a prisoner
    who cannot escape,
    and I am almost blind
    because of my sorrow.

Each day I lift my hands
    in prayer to you, Lord.
10     Do you work miracles
    for the dead?
Do they stand up
    and praise you?
11 Are your love and loyalty
announced
    in the world
    of the dead?
12 Do they know of your miracles
    or your saving power
in the dark world below
    where all is forgotten?

13 Each morning I pray
    to you, Lord.
14     Why do you reject me?
    Why do you turn from me?
15 Ever since I was a child,
I have been sick
    and close to death.
    You have terrified me
    and made me helpless.[b]

16 Your anger is like a flood!
And I am shattered
    by your furious attacks
17     that strike each day
    and from every side.
18 My friends and neighbors
have turned against me
    because of you,
    and now darkness
    is my only companion.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 88 To. . . Leannoth: Or “For the flutes,” one possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  2. 88.15 and made me helpless: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

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