Psalm 42 as a Lament

Writers, here is some inspiration for the upcoming publication. Let’s consider Psalm 42 as a lament. In the first verse, note the author’s utter desperation.

As the deer pants for streams of water,
so my soul pants for you, my God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When can I go and meet with God?
My tears have been my food day and night,
while people say to me all day long,
“Where is your God?”
These things I remember
as I pour out my soul:
how I used to go to the house of God
under the protection of the Mighty One d
with shouts of joy and praise
among the festive throng.

Here is his encouraging self-talk as he reminds himself to trust in God.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.

My soul is downcast within me;
therefore I will remember you
from the land of the Jordan,
the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar.
Deep calls to deep
in the roar of your waterfalls;
all your waves and breakers
have swept over me.

By day the Lord directs his love,
at night his song is with me—
a prayer to the God of my life.

Then the author pours out his problems and honest emotions because God can handle it (and He already knows our heart anyway).

I say to God my Rock,
“Why have you forgotten me?
Why must I go about mourning,
oppressed by the enemy?”
My bones suffer mortal agony
as my foes taunt me,
saying to me all day long,
“Where is your God?”

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.

How desperate are you for deliverance from your situation? Will you trust Jesus to take you out of it? Be completely honest about your problems and emotions. Write several laments as poems. Then write them as essays. Then write them as prayers. Write letters to those who have sinned against you. Then submit your most powerful piece of writing to Draw Near. Make sure it follows all of the guidelines for Draw Near’s next publication. (Please participate in this writing exercise even if you never plan to submit. This cathartic artistic expression of your negative emotions can be healing.)

Call for Submissions (Themed)

Draw Near is currently accepting nonfiction submissions for a new free ebook. This publication will consist of themed short writings and poetry. Writings can consist of poems, prayers, essays, letters, or other forms under 1,000 words. Please keep in mind that Draw Near is a Christian publisher. Do not submit inappropriate writing. Everyone is welcome to submit. Only quality writings that relate to the theme will be accepted.

THEME: Laments A lament is an expression of sorrow or regret. Lament your broken heart, broken dreams, prodigal children, habitual sins, injustice in the world, abuse, death of a loved one, or whatever else you deeply feel. Please include one verse of Biblical lament that corresponds to your writing in the New International Version format. (Biblical laments can be found in Job, Psalms, Lamentations, Habakkuk, Micah, Malachi, and more.) The purpose of this publication is threefold. 1) Encourage readers to freely open their hearts to God. 2) Inform readers they are not alone in their grief. 3) Express negative emotions in a healthy way. Please end your writing on a hopeful note that God will (or has) brought you out of this dark period of your life. (Many thanks to Molly woundresser for sharing her inspiration for the theme.)

Carefully read the following guidelines before submitting.

  1. Email your essay, poem, or other writing to songofsolomon8@outlook.com. Submit in the body of the email or as an attachment (.doc, .docx, .pdf). Avoid using special fonts and formats (such as centering, italics, etc). Include the title and “by” line in the email. (A pen name is okay.)
  2. You may include a short biography (optional). If your work is selected, Draw Near will share your bio in a blog. The bio must be in third person and consist of no more than three sentences. One link to your personal website or social media is acceptable. (The name that appears in your “by” line should be identical to the name in your bio.)
  3. New or old writings will be accepted. Draw Near will accept work that you have published on the internet (on your website or a public forum). However, we are not interested in manuscripts that have already been accepted for publication by other publishers. Simultaneous submissions are accepted. Please notify us immediately if your writing is accepted elsewhere.
  4. You are welcome to submit multiple writings; however, it is unlikely that more than one writing will be selected.
  5. The deadline is December 15, 2019.
  6. Unfortunately, you will not be paid for your submission. Please submit only if you wish to glorify God and help others draw near to Christ. All submissions will be considered and acknowledged. However, Draw Near will only accept quality writing that adheres to these guidelines for publication.
  7. PLEASE READ THIS IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT RIGHTS!!! By submitting a creative work:
  • you certify you are the author of the creative work.
  • you agree to give the publisher rights to publish your creative work in a single publication.
  • you authorize the publisher to make this publication available in print and electronic formats.
  • you agree to allow the publisher to post this publication on this website and other websites designed for hosting print and electronic formats.
  • you retain the copyright to your work.
  • you will be credited for your creative work (either as your real or pen name).

Still interested? Send in your writing to songofsolomon8@outlook.com today!

Call for Submissions

Draw Near is currently accepting submissions for a new free ebook called Menagerie: An Anthology of Christian Writing. This publication will be a combination of exceptional fiction and poetry. Fiction shouswirl coverld be under 1,000 words. All genres will be considered. Narrative poetry will be shown preference. All forms (except shape poetry) will be considered. Please keep in mind that Draw Near is a Christian publisher. Everyone is welcome to submit. Quality submissions that reflect Christian values are the only ones that will be accepted.

Carefully read the following guidelines before submitting.

  1. Email your fiction or poem to songofsolomon8@outlook.com. Submit in the body of the email or as an attachment (.doc, .docx, .pdf). Avoid using special fonts and formats (such as centering, italics, etc). Include the title and “by” line in the email. (A pen name is okay.)
  2. You may include a short biography (optional). If your work is selected, Draw Near will share your bio in a blog. The bio must be in third person and consist of no more than three sentences. One link to your personal website or social media is acceptable.
  3. New or old poems will be accepted. Draw Near will accept work that you have published on the internet (on your website or a public forum). However, we are not interested in manuscripts that have already been accepted for publication by other publishers. Simultaneous submissions are accepted. Please notify us immediately if your writing is accepted elsewhere.
  4. Submit a maximum of one story and three poems in one email/attachment. Fiction and poetry with indecent words or subjects will be rejected without consideration.
  5. The deadline is December 15, 2017. 
  6. Unfortunately, you will not be paid for your submission. Please submit only if you wish to glorify God and help others draw near to Christ. All submissions will be considered and acknowledged. However, Draw Near will only accept quality writing that adheres to these guidelines for publication.
  7. PLEASE READ THIS IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT RIGHTS!!! By submitting a creative work:
  • you certify you are the author of the creative work.
  • you agree to give the publisher rights to publish your creative work in a single publication.
  • you authorize the publisher to make this publication available in print and electronic formats.
  • you agree to allow the publisher to post this publication on this website and other websites designed for hosting print and electronic formats.
  • you retain the copyright to your work.
  • you will be credited for your creative work (either as your real or pen name).

Still interested? Send in your poem to songofsolomon8@outlook.com today!

Manners (poem by me)

Adults taught me it's impolite
to discuss thoughts on religion;
They said it could start a fight
or cause a friendship to end.

Even if I duct-taped my mouth,
My eyes would scream and shout,
For every Christian has a mission 
to fulfill the Great Commission. 

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the 
Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything 
I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” 
—Matthew 28:19-20
*Draw Near is now accepting poems for Blessed Creation: A Christian Poetry 
Collection. Details here: Call for Submissions.