Have mercy, Lord: a psalm for Ash Wednesday

I thought I would offer this metrical version of Psalm 51, both as a meditation for the day, and for those who want to use it in Lent. I had in mind the Passion Chorale as the tune, when writing it. No doubt I shall continue to develop this draft further, but I think it’s usable as is.

Have mercy, Lord, have mercy,
in your abundant love,
and from my sin now cleanse me,
my trespasses remove.
My shame is overpowering,
it will not let me go:
great wrath above is towering,
your sentence to bestow.

From birth have I offended,
and long been mired in sin,
yet you my heart have tended,
and sought a way within.
O cleanse my inner being,
and wash away my shame,
that I no longer fleeing
may glorify your name.

Look not on my transgression,
but take away my sin,
acknowledge my confession,
and give me life within.
Create in me a clean heart,
your spirit now renew,
your saving joy be my part,
my life be one with you.

Contrition my oblation,
and tears my sacrifice,
no ritual immolation,
for love has paid the price.
O God of my salvation,
open my lips and raise
the song of new creation,
restored in grace for praise.

Creative Commons License(And here’s a reminder that – like most of the rest of this blog – this psalm is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Licence, so you can use it freely in your liturgy and worship)