You Reassure Me, Rescue Me Always

Ever since a friend shared his paraphrase of Psalm 23 using the letter L, I’ve been creating and collecting other versions using different letters of the alphabet. Today I’m adding Psalm 23 focused on the letters R and Q (with a bit of ‘K’). That makes 9 versions so far out of the 26 letters of the alphabet!

I’ve listed all 9 as excerpts at the end of this article with links so you can read each psalm, and I’d love to complete the entire alphabet, so please feel free to choose a letter of your own to play along. If you post your version on your own blog and send me the link, add it in the comments below, or use my contact form to send it to me, I’d be glad to include yours in my Psalm 23 alphabet.

Here are the two newest additions, first in Q and then in R.

Psalm 23 in the Letter ‘Q’ (with a bit of ‘K’)

The Quintessential One is my keeper;
He quenches every quandary.
He quiets me in exquisite quadrants.
We quest beside quiescent waters.
He quickens my quiddity.
He quarterbacks me in qualities of His quintessence
for the sake of his kudos.

Wow, these opening verses had me reaching for my dictionary! For the rest of Q, please visit my blogging friend, Carole Sparks, at Not About Me: learning from the Word and from life. Her article begins with Psalm 23 in S, but scroll down and you’ll find her version in Q as well. Thank you, Carole, for your creative word play!

For Psalm 23 in the Letter R, thank you to Rita Enns for sending me her paraphrase. I met Rita when I spoke in Leamington, Ontario, this spring, and to my surprise, I received an email from her the very next day saying that she had completed the psalm. Her final version appears here with permission.

Psalm 23 in the Letter R

The Lord is my place of restoration;
He reminds me to rest in his righteousness.
He restores my soul and re-ignites my desire for right living.
Even when things are rough and ragged,
I know I can release my fears.
For God reaches down and renews me,
He repeatedly raises me up to a better place.
You reassure me, rescue me always.
When I need to resist those who rail against me,
You are my Rock.
Surely God’s riches and redeeming love
will take me through the rest of my life,
and I will rejoice when I reach my final destination.
What a reunion that will be!
– by Rita Enns –

Psalm 23 in the Key of C – James Matichuk

My Creator is caretaker and captain,
with him I crave nothing
At his command, I lay couched in clover,
he carries me to where calm currents run their course,
He cleanses and collects me—
my cowardly, crumbled soul.

Psalm 23 in the Letter D – Chris Wallace

Declarations of delight and desire do not dwindle for days,
and I definitively dwell with the Divine
for decades and decades of dawns!

Psalm 23 in the Letter G – April Yamasaki

Even though I grumble
and groan at the gloom of death,
I grasp your hand for you are with me.
You guard and ground and grow me.

You gather me in for the grand gala,
while others might glance and glare;
I glow in gleaming garments and golden garland;
my goblet overflows.

Psalm 23 in the Letter H – April Yamasaki

When my heart is heavy and the days are hard,
I hold on, hang on,
to your hand that holds me:
your hedge of protection, my haven from harm,
your Holy Spirit, my Highest Help.

Psalm 23 in El – Mel Sawatzky

He liberates my languishing soul
by leading me down His lane that’s laudable,
even though I limp through the lowlands of lingering lament.
I am Li-on- heart-ed for there is no lack of strength.

The Lord is My Provider – Phyllis Ramer

Your presence permeates my person.
Your parenting and protection provide for my well-being.
You prepare a party for me in the presence of my perpetrators.
You pour promises into my soul.

Psalm 23 in the Letter Q (with a bit of ‘K’) – Carole Sparks

The Quintessential One is my keeper; He quenches every quandary.
He quiets me in exquisite quadrants.
We quest beside quiescent waters.
He quickens my quiddity.
He quarterbacks me in qualities of His quintessence
for the sake of his kudos.

You construct a banquet before me
with a quorum of my enemies;
you quench my head with oil;
I quaff what cannot be quantified.

Psalm 23 in the Letter R – Rita Enns

Surely God’s riches and redeeming love
will take me through the rest of my life,
and I will rejoice when I reach my final destination.
What a reunion that will be!

Psalm 23 in the Letter S – Carole Sparks

The Sovereign is my shepherd,
I am sufficiently supplied.
He settles me in a supple country side,
He escorts me beside silent streams,
He strengthens my soul.

Writing/Reflection Prompt: What does it mean for the Lord to be your Shepherd? Even if you don’t work through the entire psalm, how would you paraphrase just the first verse of Psalm 23?

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15 thoughts on “You Reassure Me, Rescue Me Always

    1. Definitely, Greta–as a writing exercise, this is a wonderful way to meditate on the psalm, and reading the different versions enlarges my understanding too. Feel free to play along!

  1. April, I had to go to the public library and sit down with the big, fat dictionary on a stand to complete the letter Q! Thankfully, there were only four pages of q words (some of them were borrowed from other languages, so I didn’t include those.) I supplied a brief glossary at the bottom of the post, too.
    I am especially moved by Rita’s line, “Surely God’s riches and redeeming love
    will take me through the rest of my life.” Mmmm…
    Looking forward to more. Let me know if there’s a letter no one wants to tackle; I love the challenge.

    1. I can just imagine you with that huge dictionary, Carole! Another friend sent me her version in the letter A that I’ll include in a future post, but there are lots of letters left. I think X, Y, Z would all be challenging, and I look forward to trying them some time!

  2. Thanks for this amazing collection of creativity! It reminds me that I started transposing the psalm in to the key of M, but got sidetracked and had forgotten all about it. Here are the scraps of what I accomplished:

    The Maker is my Master; may I not murmur.
    He makes me meander in meadows and marvel beside mirror-glass meres.
    My mindset mellows as I melt into mindfulness of morality.

    Meanwhile, in spite of my mortality, my memory molds mountains into molehills as you minister to me, moment by moment, by might and by mildness.

    My master multiplies magnificent meals as I meet multitudes of the malevolent; my mind is marinating in his munificence.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and playing along, Michele. I love the mountains turning into “molehills as you minister to me, moment by moment, by might and by mildness….” Let me know if you finish it, or if you’re willing to have a collaborator 🙂

    1. Thanks for sharing and playing along, Melodie. I appreciate the way you inserted your own name for a personal touch and to add another M word. I also loved your highlight of Psalm 23 with photos–beautiful!

  3. The faithful Father fulfills me.
    He frees me from frenzy and the fury of frantic feelings
    He freshens my fortitude.
    He firms up my footing, affirming the fame of his Fatherliness.
    Finding myself in foggy frame of mind, I fear no foe, for I am fastened to you.
    You fend off fierce foxes and you feel my feelings.
    You fix a feast for me in front of ferocious fools.
    Your favor falls freely down onto my forehead and face, my flagon is full and flowing over.
    For your friendship and faithful love is fail-proof and will fervently follow me, and I will be fulfilled in Father’s family forever.

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