As the deer longs for running steams...

In one of the comboxes, a reader suggested that I post Psalm 42 for our reflection - and I'm pleased to do so. I'm posting it in two versions. The first is from the New American Bible. The second is a reflection I wrote based on Psalm 42. Some years ago, when I was on retreat, my spiritual director suggested that I pray Psalm 42 "in reverse," as if the Lord were using the psalm to speak to me - and thus the reflection below. (You might want to print this post and fill in your own name at _____)

Psalm 42

As the deer longs for streams of water,
so my soul longs for you, O God.

My being thirsts for God, the living God.
When can I go and see the face of God?

My tears have been my food day and night,
as they ask daily,"Where is your God?"

Those times I recall as I pour out my soul,
When I went in procession with the crowd,
I went with them to the house of God,
Amid loud cries of thanksgiving,
with the multitude keeping festival.

Why are you downcast, my soul;
why do you groan within me?
Wait for God, whom I shall praise again,
my savior and my God.
My soul is downcast within me;
therefore I will remember you
From the land of the Jordan and Hermon,
from the land of Mount Mizar.

Here deep calls to deep in the roar of your torrents.
All your waves and breakers sweep over me.
At dawn may the LORD bestow faithful love
that I may sing praise through the night,
praise to the God of my life.

I say to God, "My rock, why do you forget me?
Why must I go about mourning with the enemy oppressing me?"
It shatters my bones, when my adversaries reproach me.

They say to me daily: "Where is your God?"
Why are you downcast, my soul, why do you groan within me?

Wait for God, whom I shall praise again,
my savior and my God.

Psalm 42: the Lord speaks to me...

Like the deer that yearns for running streams,
so my heart is yearning for you, _____.

My soul is thirsting for you,
when can I enter your heart
and show you my face?
When will you turn your face to me
and enter my heart?

My tears have become my bread
as I ask all the day long,
“Where are you, my friend?”

These things you will remember
as you pour out your soul to me:
how you longed for my presence;
how you loved those I entrusted to your care;
how you came to praise me
in the assembly of my people.

My heart longs for you, _____,
my friend, my beloved:
I long to be with you.
to be at your side.

The waves of my love will sweep over you
but you will not drown
for by day I will send my loving kindness
and by night I will sing you to sleep.

Have you forgotten me?
Why do you go in tears, _____,
oppressed and burdened by your fears?
I will not forget you!

Let my words pierce your heart:
I am here, _____,
I love you.
You are mine and I am yours.

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