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By James Vasquez
To God I cried for help that he,
In my distress would hear,
With outstretched hands by night I cried,
And hoped to find him near.
My soul refused all comfort till
The one I sought replied,
Untiring still, my spirit groaned,
Nor would be turned aside.
With thoughts of distant past, O God,
I yet remembered you,
And as I mused of former days
My spirit fainter grew.
My eyes you kept from closing and
My tongue but silence knew,
Too troubled e’en to speak while I
Recalled things past anew.
And musing then my heart inquired
As I those songs reviewed,
That once I sang midst all the throng
And felt my soul renewed.
Will God reject our cause for aye,
Nor yet his favor show,
Will he no longer grant his love,
Or promises bestow?
Has he forgotten our great need
For mercy from his hand,
And in his wrath, compassion now,
No longer does command?
And then those years I took to thought,
The years of his right hand,
When mighty deeds, when miracles
Were done throughout our land,
And on them did I meditate,
Considering each in turn,
How mighty, how exalted, then,
Did I their place discern.
Your ways, O God, are holy and
There is no god like you,
Among the peoples showing strength
And reaping homage due.
And with your might, supreme o’er all,
Your people you redeemed,
And ransomed Jacob’s offspring from
A fate they ill esteemed.
And when the waters saw you, Lord,
They writhed and deep within
Their depths they were convulsed as when
One contemplates his sin.
The clouds released in torrents all
Their pent up water then,
And thunder rolled across the skies
That put in awe all men.
Your arrows flashing back and forth
Cast all the world in light,
And earth itself was shaken by
That grand display of might.
Your path upon the waters led,
And through the violent sea,
Invisible to eyes of men,
And of all footprint free.
And like a flock so tender, Lord,
Shall we for ages tell,
By Moses’ hand, and Aaron’s, too,
You led your people well.
from the December 2005 Edition of the Jewish Magazine
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