Sunday, May 22, 2011

Shepherd me

To say I cry sometimes during Mass is the understatement of all time.  Last Sunday was no exception.  I was doing great until we got to the psalm.  Rita sang it so beautifully!  "Shepherd me, O God, beyond my wants, beyond my fears, from Death into Life!"  It is a variation of the 23rd psalm.  You know the one, "The Lord is my shepherd, there's nothing I shall want...surely goodness and mercy follow me..." It's a pretty standard funeral reading, and for good reason.  Who doesn't want to think of their newly deceased loved one in the arms of their maker.  That's not what makes me cry, however.  It's much more personal than that. 

I can't count how many times my soul has personally cried out these words.  (Usually in this same tune, in fact.)  Shepherd me!  Draw me in, and don't let me stray too far from you.  Keep me in mind, and in eyesight.  I'm known to wander off and be easily distracted by the shiny things of life.  Please, PLEASE, O God, keep seeking me out and keep bringing me back to the fold!

Shepherd me beyond my wants!  I see something that looks like it might be tasty, so I wander over to it.  It's what I want and I fight you for it.  Of course you know better, you know that what I want is really poisonous to my soul, but I am a sheep.  I want what I want when I want it!  Lead me away, Lord.  Protect me and shepherd me! 

Shepherd me beyond my fears!  When I am frozen with it.  When I just can't move because the wolves appear to be everywhere, stalking me, licking their lips waiting to consume me.  Shepherd me!  Pick me up and carry me on your shoulders and calm me, telling me that you have me and I'm going to be alright!  Shepherd me, O God, beyond my fears! 

Shepherd me from death into life!  When I am physically dead.  When I am spiritually dead.  When I am mentally drained of all that is me, shepherd me back in the way that only YOU can heal.  You allowed me to experience my own death, and you were there for me.  Escort me back to life.  Not the life I had before, but a newer, fuller, more vibrant life, filled with your love and goodness.  Surely, your goodness and mercy DOES follow me all the days of my life. 

Thank you, O, God for shepherding me.  Even before I knew I was your sheep.        

1 comment:

  1. HI Amy:) I like the photos on here:) I'm in the middle of a book called 90 minutes in heaven.....the part the Pastor author wrote about music (the magnitude of the beauty of praising and music in heaven and the intensity he experienced...) was too deep and touching to describe (i WISH i could put words to my reactions. The author had trouble putting words to HIS experience in Heaven. There is just so much TRUTH to what he says about music and praise, it sings out in my very soul). I had to keep putting the book down and taking HUGE gulps of air! It was THAT amazing to experience the articulation of THAT part of his Heavenly experience. Tears were flowing just thinking about his words, and i had to keep taking breaks to take in more words. I am VERY sure in my humanness I could NOT handle the glory to behold without being prepared! JUST like we (my Bible group)read about in Old Testament humans could not look upon God without dying. So they formed the tent that only Moses could go into the part with God, then he'd come out with his face all radiant.

    I love that this song often sings out to you (I agree, it was sung so beautifully)! Music is one of my FAVORITE parts of the mass...and i LOVE OUR choir! (the youth was so wonderful today!) I love when the Priests sing the ceremony as well:)

    I find music is a huge way God speaks to me as well (one of his many beautiful tools, probably my favorite lately). When i listen and sing to music while thinking of God or praying, it is definately comforting, and i use it when i need to cope with anything (it's WAY better than some of the other coping mechanisms that tempt us out there.....i wish i would have learnt that in my younger years...destructive coping NEVER works! BUT praise and prayer DO...especially singing it out! What a gift if we use it! If I can use it, ANYone can use it, just alone in the car or the shower.....I firmly believe God loves it!).

    You know, I have been thinking A LOT about all the authors and musicians out there and the meaning to their work.....the impact certain words or melodies (even old hymns) have had on me....and how each of us has our own way of "hearing" certain things the first time. Sometimes a sentence can be meant for just certain people to specifically hear. I'm proud of you that you are prayerfully writing! Thanks for sharing the love Amy!

    P.S. I also love that singing prayer and praises from my own pitiful earthly (probably tone deaf) voice is SO uplifting and fills me with a hope and joy beyond words!! There's just something about the arts.....

    P.P.S. I feel your prayer on this page too! I keep hoping similar things.....such truth, light and desire in your words!