[A prayer of an afflicted person who is weak and pours out his lament before the Lord.] LORD, hear my prayer; let my cry for help come before You.
Do not hide Your face from me in my day of trouble. Listen closely to me; answer me quickly when I call.
For my days vanish like smoke, and my bones burn like a furnace.
My heart is afflicted, withered like grass; I even forget to eat my food.
Because of the sound of my groaning, my flesh sticks to my bones.
I am like a desert owl, like an owl among the ruins.
I stay awake; I am like a solitary bird on a roof.
My enemies taunt me all day long; they ridicule and curse me.
I eat ashes like bread and mingle my drinks with tears
because of Your indignation and wrath; for You have picked me up and thrown me aside.
My days are like a lengthening shadow, and I wither away like grass.
But You, LORD, are enthroned forever; Your fame [endures] to all generations.
You will arise and have compassion on Zion, for it is time to show favor to her-- the appointed time has come.
For Your servants take delight in its stones and favor its dust.
Then the nations will fear the name of the LORD, and all the kings of the earth Your glory,
for the LORD will rebuild Zion; He will appear in His glory.
He will pay attention to the prayer of the destitute and will not despise their prayer.
This will be written for a later generation, and a newly created people will praise the LORD:
He looked down from His holy heights-- the LORD gazed out from heaven to earth--
to hear a prisoner's groaning, to set free those condemned to die,
so that they might declare the name of the LORD in Zion and His praise in Jerusalem,
when peoples and kingdoms are assembled to serve the LORD.
He has broken my strength in midcourse; He has shortened my days.
I say: "My God, do not take me in the middle of my life! Your years continue through all generations.
Long ago You established the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands.
They will perish, but You will endure; all of them will wear out like clothing. You will change them like a garment, and they will pass away.
But You are the same, and Your years will never end.
Your servants' children will dwell [securely], and their offspring will be established before You."