In a Foreign Land


By the rivers of Babylon —
there we sat down and there we wept
when we remembered Zion.

On the willows there
we hung up our harps.

For there our captors
 asked us for songs,
and our tormentors asked for mirth, saying,
“Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”

How could we sing the Lord’s song
 in a foreign land?

-Psalm 137:1-4, NRSV

These days
I feel
I am in exile
In my own land

I am silent
Unable to sing
The songs of the Holy One
The songs of my heart

I feel like a stranger
In this foreign land
I thought I knew

How can I sing
When churches
Vote on the worth of God’s beloved

When xenophobia
And misogyny
Have taken up residence
In the seats of power

When hate
Walks proudly down the street
In the light of day

How can I sing
The Lord’s song
In this foreign land?


10 thoughts on “In a Foreign Land”

  1. Oh, yes! You articulate a deep pain I’ve been carrying!

    Blessings in all you do ~ Courtney Spear, MA, MM Certified Psychologist w Autonomous Functioning (101257) Ordained Deacon – KY Conference United Methodist Church Valley Hope Centre 129 Second Street Vanceburg, KY. 41179-1001 606-796-6400


  2. These are hard days. Thanks for putting into words what I believe is the feeling of a great many. Praying for the church in the days ahead that more will see the truth that God’s love is for all, and that the UMC should be for all. May you always feel His love wrapped around you when these days cause you such grief. Praying for you. Lynn

  3. Wow…just wow Beth. This hits so many nails on the head for oh so many reasons… holding all in my heart and prayers. Your gifts are sacred and holy my friend – thanks for your willingness to open a window to your soul. ♥️🤗

  4. | | | |

    | | | Beth,Your writing is absolutely beautiful and so full of Truth. May God give you a peaceful spirit in these days of exile. Blessings and peace,(Rev) Linda DemingSun City West, AZretired, N Illinois Conference  


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