Show Me Mercy (Psalm 57)

One day in January 2006, my husband’s brother called him with an exceptional birthday surprise – the offer of a new job. It seemed to be a fantastic opportunity, but it wasn’t a slam dunk decision. It would mean uprooting our family and moving to Arizona from Oregon, a place where we had put down roots as deep as those of the fir trees in our neighborhood. After much prayer and many pro/con lists which consistently pointed to accepting the job, we put our house on the market, and my husband headed for Arizona. Given the way houses had been flying off the market, we were quite confident the kids and I would be following him in no time.

Two months later and with Doubt waving from his perch atop our For Sale sign, we were elated to finally get a contract on our house one Wednesday afternoon. I went to church that Sunday rejoicing. To add to my joy, my friend, Dan, sent me home with a new tune he’d written for Psalm 57. I took it home eager to sit down at the piano and play it.

The tune was quickly forgotten when I pulled into our driveway and saw that the “Sale Pending” sign had been removed. A call to our realtor confirmed what my heart feared: the prospective buyers had backed out. Needless to say, it was quite a blow. Since childhood I’ve always done one thing under such circumstances – sit down at my piano. I pulled out Dan’s music and began to play it and read the words… “Show me mercy, O God, show me mercy, for my soul finds its trust in you. In your shadowing wings I take refuge, until sorrows have all passed by…”

The sorrows of losing the sale did pass and a sale did finally come through, but not for another two and a half months. I’ve played Dan’s tune many times since. It’s in the key of D minor, and I love minor keys – whatever that may say about me. But a couple of months ago I asked Dan if he would mind if I transposed the last verse of the song into the major key. It took me four years and many trials and tribulations, but I finally realized that (for me, at least) I needed to sing the last verse with an obvious change in tone. “I will give thanks to you with the people, with the nations I’ll sing praise to you. For your love is great to the heavens, and your truth unto the clouds. Be exalted, O God, in the heav’ns, let your glory be over all the earth. Be exalted, O God, in the heavens; let your glory be over the earth.”

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4 thoughts on “Show Me Mercy (Psalm 57)

  1. Sabrina,With tears, as I read and listened, I was blessed to know you felt the need to change the tone of the song. The Author is finishing your faith. God be praised.Love you,Pat

  2. Pat and Noar,I love you both. You have both been (and continue to be) treasured inspirations for my life and music. Yes, still minoring, but also finishing – by God's grace.

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