Pink blossoms framing a stone status in the Cathedral gardens

Psalm 130

Out of the depths have I called to you, O Lord;
Lord, hear my voice;
let your ears consider well the voice of my supplication.
If you, Lord, were to note what is done amiss,
O Lord, who could stand?
For there is forgiveness with you;
therefore you shall be feared.
I wait for the Lord; my soul waits for him;
in his word is my hope.
My soul waits for the Lord,
more than watchmen for the morning,
more than watchmen for the morning.
O Israel, wait for the Lord,
for with the Lord there is mercy;
With him there is plenteous redemption,
and he shall redeem Israel from all their sins.

One of the things I love most about the psalms is that they reflect every emotion of the human heart and give voice to the full range of human experience. They serve as deeply honest and sometimes raw expression of our feelings that reflect our relationship with an intimate and loving God.

Psalm 130 begins with a desperate cry for help; for the Lord to have mercy. The psalmist calls out to God “out the depths” of his soul. We don’t know the exact circumstance, but we hear the writer’s desire to rid himself of the burdens that he carries. The psalmist is aware that his sin has created a deep separation between himself and God, and longs for the Lord to turn a merciful ear toward him and offer forgiveness.

I don’t know about you, but there have been things I’ve done, and more often things I’ve left undone, that have resulted in my feeling that I have failed in who God has called me to be. But in Psalm 130, I am encouraged to unburden my heart with honesty and openness because ultimately it is a psalm of hope. God wants us to have the inner strength to let ourselves be vulnerable so that God can give us hope, since it is in our most fragile times that we are able to accept and know God’s love and power in our lives the most.

No matter how bad the situation, no matter how deep the pain and despair, God’s love is deeper still, and God will rescue us from out of the depths. Those who wait on the Lord wait in hope.

As you continue your Lenten journey, searching the depths of your heart, may Psalm 130 be your prayer this day.


Lord Christ, our eternal Redeemer, grant us such fellowship in your sufferings, that, filled with your Holy Spirit, we may subdue the flesh to the spirit, and the spirit to you, and at the last attain to the glory of your resurrection; who lives and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

(Lesser Feasts and Fasts)