“The King of Love My Shepherd Is” [PIANO, lack of composer is deliberate]
“Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us”
In a Christian adult-ed class once upon a time in a galaxy far away, we were asked to write a paraphrase of Psalm 23. Below you’ll find mine.
By the way, in my humble opinion it is a paucity of human experience that all conscious beings on this earthly plane are either male or female (however one chooses to define that). Since, in my humble opinion G-d is beyond all earthly and finite concepts including gender, I alternate between masculine and feminine grammatical forms. (A ‘solution’ which still falls short.)
Also, it is a lovely detail of the original Psalm 23 that David starts in the ‘third person’: "The Lord is… He leadeth me", and halfway through switches to ‘first person’: “Yea though *I* walk… *I* will fear no evil…”, a structural feature which I’ve honored.
The Lord is ineffable, I shall never presume to comprehend Her at all.
He shows me Unfathomable Shining Mysteries. In every moment for all time She sings Her Great Ever-Fecund Silence — and all that Is springs anew, transformed and renewed again and again, eternally.
I have no soul apart from Him.
She leads me, and all of humanity, in our lurching, staggering first baby steps toward the Greatness for which He created us in Her image.
Yea though I be crushed by Fierce Graces* beyond enduring, I know that Your Love will ultimately triumph in ways I may not live to see. Your chastening, and embrace — they both sustain me through each moment.
In my Darkest Night, You are the dim, sputtering candlelight that nevertheless never fails. You anoint my broken heart with Your Own tears. My puny cup and I are simply lost, carried away by the mighty currents of Your Infinite Ocean.
Surely Mystery, Awe and Compassion shall enfold me all the days of my fleeting life, and I humbly bow down with gratitude beyond words to have been even a forgotten whimsy in the Heart of God forever.
(*Tragedies that turn out to [spiritually] benefit us in the long run.)