A Prayer for Help
1Lord, battle with those who battle with me.
Fight against those who fight against me.
2Pick up the shield and armor.
Rise up and help me.
3Lift up your spears, both large and small,
against those who chase me.
Tell me, “I will save you.”
4Make those who want to kill me
be ashamed and disgraced.
Make those who plan to harm me
turn back and run away.
5Make them like chaff blown by the wind
as the angel of the Lord forces them away.
6Let their road be dark and slippery
as the angel of the Lord chases them.
7For no reason they spread out their net to trap me;
for no reason they dug a pit for me.
8So let ruin strike them suddenly.
Let them be caught in their own nets;
let them fall into the pit and die.
9Then I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will be happy when he saves me.
10Even my bones will say,
“Lord, who is like you?
You save the weak from the strong,
the weak and poor from robbers.”
11Men without mercy stand up to testify.
They ask me things I do not know.
12They repay me with evil for the good I have done,
and they make me very sad.
13Yet when they were sick, I put on clothes of sadness
and showed my sorrow by fasting.
But my prayers were not answered.
14I acted as if they were my friends or brothers.
I bowed in sadness as if I were crying for my mother.
15But when I was in trouble, they gathered and laughed;
they gathered to attack before I knew it.
They insulted me without stopping.
16They made fun of me and were cruel to me
and ground their teeth at me in anger.
17Lord, how long will you watch this happen?
Save my life from their attacks;
save me from these people who are like lions.
18I will praise you in the great meeting.
I will praise you among crowds of people.
19Do not let my enemies laugh at me;
they hate me for no reason.
Do not let them make fun of me;
they have no cause to hate me.
20Their words are not friendly
but are lies about peace-loving people.
21They speak against me
and say, “Aha! We saw what you did!”
22Lord, you have been watching. Do not keep quiet.
Lord, do not leave me alone.
23Wake up! Come and defend me!
My God and Lord, fight for me!
24Lord my God, defend me with your justice.
Don’t let them laugh at me.
25Don’t let them think, “Aha! We got what we wanted!”
Don’t let them say, “We destroyed him.”
26Let them be ashamed and embarrassed,
because they were happy when I hurt.
Cover them with shame and disgrace,
because they thought they were better than I was.
27May my friends sing and shout for joy.
May they always say, “Praise the greatness of the Lord,
who loves to see his servants do well.”
28I will tell of your goodness
and will praise you every day.
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