Psalms of hope, love, fear and despair

I was back at Port Phillip prison yesterday, we were writing more psalms in worship. The men were overwhelmed by the comments people left last week. [welcome to their families who are reading these… You can see the Psalms that Phil and Alf wrote last week here].

These are the Psalms the men wrote yesterday. We used Psalm 40 as a framework, and the men added their own prayers.

From Phil:

I waited patiently, Lord, for you to hear my prayer.
You listened and pulled me from a lonely pit full of mud and mire.
You let me stand on a rock with my feet firm,
and you gave me a new song,
a song of praise to you.

I feel joy when I talk to my family – to Phillip, Norman, Stephen, Dean and Amiee – on the phone.
It gives me hope to spend time with them.

You Lord, never fail to have pity on me;
your love and faithfulness
always keep me secure.

I need to pray more for you, God, to listen to my problems.
I need you to show me strength, to show me the way, so I can get out of here.

You haven’t shown anything back yet, God.
I pray a lot.
I pray most days to get the strength to go on,
but I’m still waiting to be shown the way to believe.

My deepest desire is to start a new life.


I have more troubles than I can count.
My sins are all around me, and I can’t find my way.
My sins outnumber the hairs on my head, and I feel weak.
Please show that you care and come to my rescue.
Hurry and help me!

Give me the strength, God, to go further in life, to change my ways.
I have to believe in something. I don’t know if I can believe in you.

I am angry and helpless, tired and frustrated, Lord God.
If you care about me, come to my rescue.
Please hurry and help.

—–

From Alf:

I waited patiently, Lord, for you to hear my prayer.
You listened and pulled me from a lonely pit full of mud and mire.
You let me stand on a rock with my feet firm,
and you gave me a new song,
a song of praise to you.

I feel joy when you love me, Lord.
When I feel down you help me God.
You show us all love.

When I am lonely you show me the way.

You Lord, never fail to have pity on me;
your love and faithfulness
always keep me secure.

I know your love when you are near me, Oh Lord,
when I am near God, my heavenly father who is in heaven.

My deepest desire is that you, Lord God, will show me the way, and give me your deepest sympathy.

I have more troubles than I can count.
My sins are all around me, and I can’t find my way.
My sins outnumber the hairs on my head, and I feel weak.
Please show that you care and come to my rescue.
Hurry and help me!


I am poor and needy, but, Lord God,
you care about me, and you come to my rescue.
Please hurry and help.

Thankyou God for your love.
I am with you all the way.

From Trevor:

I waited patiently, Lord, for you to hear my prayer.
You listened and pulled me from a lonely pit full of mud and mire.
You let me stand on a rock with my feet firm,
and you gave me a new song,
a song of praise to you.

I feel joy when I hear you sing to me
I want to know your love.

I am hopeful when you send your love from heaven to me
and I send my love back to you.

You Lord, never fail to have pity on me;
your love and faithfulness
always keep me secure.

I know your love when I hear you
through the love of my friends and family.
I trust you with all above.

You deserve everything from me.

I have more troubles than I can count.
My sins are all around me, and I can’t find my way.
My sins outnumber the hairs on my head, and I feel weak.
Please show that you care and come to my rescue.
Hurry and help me!

Forgive me for my sins.
I ask Jesus to take me into his loving arms.

I am poor and needy, but, Lord God,
you care about me, and you come to my rescue.
Please hurry and help.

6 Comments

  1. These three men are ministering to my heart tonight. I sit half a world away, amazed by their hope… amazed by their genersity in sharing some with me.

    You are doing a beautiful thing for all of us. Thank you.

  2. Cheryl

    thanks erin. i’ll tell the men this.

    i still cry each time i read them.

  3. Greg the Explorer

    Cheryl I absolutley love these psalms. Helping prisoners write their own psalms is in a way allowing thiem to re-write thier own past and future. I spent a lot of my time in prison reading my life in the pslams and they comforted me no end.

  4. Greg the Explorer

    Cheryl can you tell them that there are ex inmates across the country who consider themselves to be in solidarity with their still incarcerated brothers and that they are held before God in prayer and thought about. My heart aches for all men and women whom society has decided aren’t ‘good enough’ to be seen or heard.

    I pray for your work too Cheryl – keep it up.

    Have you ever made contact with Rod Moore, chapllaincy coordinator for Corrective Serivces NSW? I’m sure he’d love to hear about what you are doing. Mention my name – Greg Colby – won;t get you any better seats but at least there’ll be a connection for him. He is a great man and worth knowing.

    Greg

  5. again, these words touch my soul in such an honest way. Knowing that they are “trapped” and still hopeful – it gives me great peace. Thank you again!

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