you have taken up my cause

by Kate Wallace Nunneley

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I was told once that lament can open up things in your soul that you didn’t know were there. When we feel like we have no words, perhaps borrowing them is a place to start. I’ve borrowed a few from the book of Lamentations. How telling that I only had to change a few words to lament our story – the story of women.

How lonely sits the womanwho was once so full of life.She that ruled over creationis now considered subject.

She weeps bitterly in the nightwith tears on her cheeks;among all her loversshe has no one to comfort her; all of them have dealt treacherously with her,they have become her enemies.

She is alone in this world of suffering and servitude;alive with no resting place;her pursuers have all overtaken her in the midst of her distress.Her foes have become the masters, her enemies prosper.Is it the Lord that has made her suffer?

And she remembers all the precious things about her life long pastbefore her sisters fell into the hand of the foe and there was no one to help her,the foe looked on mocking over their downfall.

The woman cries out,“Gone is my glory, and all that I had hoped for from the Lord.My eyes flow with rivers of tears because of the destruction of my sisters.

My eyes will flow without ceasing, without respite, until the Lord from Heaven looks down and sees.

My eyes cause me grief at the fate of all the women around me.

I called on your name, O Lord.From the depths of the pityou heard my plea.You came near when I called on you; you told me, “Do not fear!”

You have seen the wrong done to me, O Lord;judge my cause!You have seen all their malice,all their plots against me.

You have heard their cat calls,their taunts, their murmurs.Whether they sit or they rise,I am the object of their taunting songs.

Pay them back for their deeds, O Lord, according to the work of their hands!Let them feel my anguishas you judge them for the evil they have done.

You have taken up my cause, O Lord,You redeemed my life.Restore my sisters, O Lord, to what we were meant to be.”

Amen.

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This lament first appeared here, on the Junia Project.

Kate Wallace Nunneley is Co-Founder of The Junia Project and Associate Pastor at Wellspring Free Methodist Church in Bakersfield, CA. A committed Christian and feminist, Kate enjoys writing and speaking on the intersection of politics, religion, and gender. Her favorite theologian is Gilbert Bilezikian, and she holds a Master of Science from London School of Economics and a Bachelor of Arts from Azusa Pacific University. Kate is currently pursuing her Masters of Divinity at Azusa Pacific Seminary.