King David wasn’t poor by monetary standards. Yet, when I started reading this psalm, I related the very first line to wealth and prosperity. And while I get the feeling that David’s “poorness” in this psalm refers more to a “poor” state of health than a wallet, I’m still going to talk about not having much money. It’s no secret I chose a career path that didn’t pad my pockets. I can’t always say it paid the bills because it didn’t. Heck, it didn’t even offer insurance or a retirement plan most of the time. Still, I spent the better part of my life being “poor,” or at least living right at or even below that line they draw in the U.S. that denotes the national poverty level. And it wasn’t easy to live that way, but I look back now and realize, I never went without anything of real importance, and while I would have loved to have given my kids everything they ever wanted in life, they did always have a roof over their heads and full bellies. And that was enough. We always had just enough, which was plenty and more than many others have on a regular basis and reminds me of a time I was working at the Junction City (Ks.) Daily Union watching my coworker eat a Taco Bell burrito while sitting at her desk. I asked her if that was all she was eating for lunch that day. She said, “Yes, it was just enough.” Only she said it with flair, like it was the best decision she’d made all day, like she was completely satisfied. And for some reason, that burrito encounter has gotten me through lots of frustrating times when money was short and little shoes were getting too snug for growing feet. We couldn’t always afford the designer brands, but when we needed important things, we always seemed to have just enough. I guess my point is, sometimes the difference between being poor and feeling poor is all about attitude. We can feel poor, like King David does today, or we can feel rich and satisfied by counting the blessings we have.
I also wanted to elaborate on the other vibe I got from the rest of King David’s words today. He seems to start this psalm with a praise that doesn’t really concern him – or maybe it does? And then he switches to a dialogue that is swimming in nasty thoughts. Can I count the number of times I had a conversation like this with myself? No. Thank goodness. And thank goodness, also, that I didn’t write down my thoughts like King David did, or did I miss an opportunity? Of course I did! You see, even though I got the impression that King David is ranting and begging here, I also get the impression that God wants to hear our ranting and begging here. His words are a bit jumbled and desperate sounding. They really don’t even flow together or make much sense in the context of a song or poem. They are, and forgive me when I say it, gobbledygook. And that’s ok. God loves our gobbledygook just as He loved David’s enough to preserve it for centuries so that we can see how God just wants our communication. He doesn’t really care so much how it is presented. (Though, I believe He does like a good ol’ dedicated-to-Him writing session on a regular basis.)
Sum it up:
Oh, what joy it brings to care for the poor.
The Lord always watches over them,
Even when they have no clue that He is.
Writing prompt: just enough or gobbledygook
Write about a time you had just enough, or go freestyle today, and just write whatever God puts on your heart to say to Him.