9 The First Song of Isaiah Ecce, Deus
Surely, it is God who saves me; *
I will trust in him and not be afraid.
For the Lord is my stronghold and my sure defense, *
and he will be my Savior.
Therefore you shall draw water with rejoicing *
from the springs of salvation.
And on that day you shall say, *
Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his Name;
Make his deeds known among the peoples; *
see that they remember that his Name is exalted.
Sing the praises of the Lord, for he has done great things, *
and this is known in all the world.
Cry aloud, inhabitants of Zion, ring out your joy, *
for the great one in the midst of you is the Holy One of Israel.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.
From Morning Prayer, Rite II, BCP
Some things are just such anchors. This canticle is one of them. Through the ups and downs of the last several months it has been my daily companion and reminder. Sometimes when I am flying along, getting a little too big for myself, it is the reminder I need that it is GOD who saves me, a reminder to be grateful for all these good gifts that seem to be landing on my head, for just how fine I seem to be doing. Sometimes I am drawing water with rejoicing, and in the next breath I am drowning and it is my life preserver, and I am crying "God save me!" in the midst of whatever I have gotten myself into. There have been those stretches that have been all about the joy, singing praises and exhalting, and just as surely,there come those times when I feel like I am hiding in the shadows with God as my only defense and stronghold. In those times it can be hard to generate my own prayer, and I feel mute and wordless before God. It's one of the things I am grateful for in Scripture. That others have gone before me, have found the words, and I can simply pray along with them.