WHY IS MY SUFFERING CONTINUAL?
IF YOU COME BACK, I WILL TAKE YOU BACK INTO MY SERVICE.
Woe is me, my mother, for you have borne me
to be a man of stife and of dissension for all the land.
I neither lend nor borrow,
yet all of them curse me
and avenge me on my persecutors.
Your anger is very slow: do not let me be snatched away.
Realise that I suffer insult for your sake.
When your words came, I devoured them:
your word was my delight
and the joy of my heart;
for I was called by your name,
Lord, God of hosts.
I never took pleasure in sitting in scoffers’ company;
with your hand I held myself aloof,
since you had filled me with indignation.
Why is my suffering continual,
my wound incurable, refusing to be healed?
Do you mean to be for me a deceptive stream
with inconstant waters?
To which the Lord replied,
“If you come back,
I will take you back in my service;
and if you utter noble, not despicable, thoughts,
you shall be as my own mouth.
They will come back to you,
but you must not go back to them.
I will make you
a bronze wall fortified against this people.
They will fight against you
but they will not overcome you,
because I am with you
to save you and to deliver you
– it is the Lord who speaks.
I mean to deliver you from the hands of the wicked
and redeem you from the clutches of the violent.”
V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.