The Message

Lamentations 1

Worthless, Cheap, Abject!

1Oh, oh, oh . . .
How empty the city, once teeming with people.
    A widow, this city, once in the front rank of nations,
    once queen of the ball, she’s now a drudge in the kitchen.

She cries herself to sleep each night, tears soaking her pillow.
    No one’s left among her lovers to sit and hold her hand.
    Her friends have all dumped her.

After years of pain and hard labor, Judah has gone into exile.
    She camps out among the nations, never feels at home.
    Hunted by all, she’s stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Zion’s roads weep, empty of pilgrims headed to the feasts.
    All her city gates are deserted, her priests in despair.
    Her virgins are sad. How bitter her fate.

Her enemies have become her masters. Her foes are living it up
    because God laid her low, punishing her repeated rebellions.
    Her children, prisoners of the enemy, trudge into exile.

All beauty has drained from Daughter Zion’s face.
    Her princes are like deer famished for food,
    chased to exhaustion by hunters.

Jerusalem remembers the day she lost everything,
    when her people fell into enemy hands, and not a soul there to help.
    Enemies looked on and laughed, laughed at her helpless silence.

Jerusalem, who outsinned the whole world, is an outcast.
    All who admired her despise her now that they see beneath the surface.
    Miserable, she groans and turns away in shame.

She played fast and loose with life, she never considered tomorrow,
    and now she’s crashed royally, with no one to hold her hand:
    “Look at my pain, O God! And how the enemy cruelly struts.”

10 The enemy reached out to take all her favorite things. She watched
    as pagans barged into her Sanctuary, those very people for whom
    you posted orders: keep out: this assembly off-limits.

11 All the people groaned, so desperate for food, so desperate to stay alive
    that they bartered their favorite things for a bit of breakfast:
    “O God, look at me! Worthless, cheap, abject!

12 “And you passersby, look at me! Have you ever seen anything like this?
    Ever seen pain like my pain, seen what he did to me,
    what God did to me in his rage?

13 “He struck me with lightning, skewered me from head to foot,
    then he set traps all around so I could hardly move.
    He left me with nothing—left me sick, and sick of living.

14 “He wove my sins into a rope
    and harnessed me to captivity’s yoke.
    I’m goaded by cruel taskmasters.

15 “The Master piled up my best soldiers in a heap,
    then called in thugs to break their fine young necks.
    The Master crushed the life out of fair virgin Judah.

16 “For all this I weep, weep buckets of tears,
    and not a soul within miles around cares for my soul.
    My children are wasted, my enemy got his way.”

17 Zion reached out for help, but no one helped.
    God ordered Jacob’s enemies to surround him,
    and now no one wants anything to do with Jerusalem.

18 God has right on his side. I’m the one who did wrong.
    Listen everybody! Look at what I’m going through!
    My fair young women, my fine young men, all herded into exile!

19 “I called to my friends; they betrayed me.
    My priests and my leaders only looked after themselves,
    trying but failing to save their own skins.

20 “O God, look at the trouble I’m in! My stomach in knots,
    my heart wrecked by a life of rebellion.
    Massacres in the streets, starvation in the houses.

21 “Oh, listen to my groans. No one listens, no one cares.
    When my enemies heard of the trouble you gave me, they cheered.
    Bring on Judgment Day! Let them get what I got!

22 “Take a good look at their evil ways and give it to them!
    Give them what you gave me for my sins.
    Groaning in pain, body and soul, I’ve had all I can take.”

Mawu a Mulungu mu Chichewa Chalero

Maliro 1

1Haa! Mzinda uja wasiyidwa wokhawokha,
    umene kale unali wodzaza ndi anthu!
Kale unali wotchuka pakati pa mitundu ya anthu!
    Tsopano wasanduka ngati mkazi wamasiye.
Kale unali mfumukazi ya onse pa dziko lapansi,
    tsopano wasanduka kapolo.

Ukulira mowawidwa mtima usiku wonse,
    misozi ili pa masaya pake.
Mwa abwenzi ake onse,
    palibe ndi mmodzi yemwe womutonthoza.
Abwenzi ake onse amuchitira chiwembu;
    onse akhala adani ake.

Yuda watengedwa ku ukapolo,
    kukazunzika ndi kukagwira ntchito yolemetsa.
Iye akukhala pakati pa anthu a mitundu ina;
    ndipo alibe malo opumulira.
Onse omuthamangitsa iye amupitirira,
    ndipo alibe kwina kothawira.

Misewu yopita ku Ziyoni ikulira,
    chifukwa palibe ndi mmodzi yemwe akubwera ku maphwando ake.
Zipata zake zonse zili pululu,
    ansembe akubuwula.
Anamwali ake akulira,
    ndipo ali mʼmasautso woopsa.

Adani ake asanduka mabwana ake;
    odana naye akupeza bwino.
Yehova wamubweretsera mavuto
    chifukwa cha machimo ake ambiri.
Ana ake atengedwa ukapolo
    pamaso pa mdani.

Ulemerero wonse wa mwana wamkazi wa Ziyoni
    wachokeratu.
Akalonga ake ali ngati mbawala
    zosowa msipu;
alibe mphamvu zothawira
    owathamangitsa.

Pa masiku a masautso ndi kuzunzika kwake,
    Yerusalemu amakumbukira chuma chonse
    chimene mʼmasiku amakedzana chinali chake.
Anthu ake atagwidwa ndi adani ake,
    panalibe aliyense womuthandiza.
Adani ake ankamuyangʼana
    ndi kumuseka chifukwa cha kuwonongeka kwake.

Yerusalemu wachimwa kwambiri
    ndipo potero wakhala wodetsedwa.
Onse amene ankamulemekeza pano akumunyoza,
    chifukwa aona umaliseche wake.
Iye mwini akubuwula
    ndipo akubisa nkhope yake.

Uve wake umaonekera pa zovala zake;
    iye sanaganizire za tsogolo lake.
Nʼchifukwa chake kugwa kwake kunali kwakukulu;
    ndipo analibe womutonthoza.
“Inu Yehova, taonani masautso anga,
    pakuti mdani wapambana.”

10 Adani amulanda
    chuma chake chonse;
iye anaona mitundu ya anthu achikunja ikulowa mʼmalo ake opatulika,
    amene Inu Mulungu munawaletsa
    kulowa mu msonkhano wanu.

11 Anthu ake onse akubuwula
    pamene akufunafuna chakudya;
asinthanitsa chuma chawo ndi chakudya
    kuti akhale ndi moyo.
“Inu Yehova, taonani ndipo ganizirani,
    chifukwa ine ndanyozeka.”

12 “Kodi zimenezi mukuziyesa zachabe, inu nonse mukudutsa?
    Yangʼanani ndipo muone.
Kodi pali mavuto ofanana ndi
    amene andigwerawa,
amene Ambuye anandibweretsera
    pa tsiku la ukali wake?

13 “Anatumiza moto kuchokera kumwamba,
    unalowa mpaka mʼmafupa anga.
Anayala ukonde kuti ukole mapazi anga
    ndipo anandibweza.
Anandisiya wopanda chilichonse,
    wolefuka tsiku lonse.

14 “Wazindikira machimo anga onse
    ndipo ndi manja ake anawaluka pamodzi.
Machimowa afika pakhosi panga,
    ndipo Ambuye wandithetsa mphamvu.
Iye wandipereka
    kwa anthu amene sindingalimbane nawo.

15 “Ambuye wakana
    anthu anga onse amphamvu omwe ankakhala nane:
wasonkhanitsa gulu lankhondo kuti lilimbane nane,
    kuti litekedze anyamata anga;
mʼmalo ofinyira mphesa Ambuye wapondereza
    anamwali a Yuda.

16 “Chifukwa cha zimenezi ndikulira
    ndipo maso anga adzaza ndi misozi.
Palibe aliyense pafupi woti anditonthoze,
    palibe aliyense wondilimbitsa mtima.
Ana anga ali okhaokha
    chifukwa mdani watigonjetsa.

17 “Ziyoni wakweza manja ake,
    koma palibe aliyense womutonthoza.
Yehova walamula kuti abale ake
    a Yakobo akhale adani ake;
Yerusalemu wasanduka
    chinthu chodetsedwa pakati pawo.

18 “Yehova ndi wolungama,
    koma ndine ndinawukira malamulo ake.
Imvani inu anthu a mitundu yonse;
    onani masautso anga.
Anyamata ndi anamwali anga
    agwidwa ukapolo.

19 “Ndinayitana abwenzi anga
    koma anandinyenga.
Ansembe ndi akuluakulu anga
    anafa mu mzinda
pamene ankafunafuna chakudya
    kuti akhale ndi moyo.

20 “Inu Yehova, onani mmene ine ndavutikira!
    Ndikuzunzika mʼkati mwanga,
ndipo mu mtima mwanga ndasautsidwa
    chifukwa ndakhala osamvera.
Mʼmisewu anthu akuphedwa,
    ndipo ku mudzi kuli imfa yokhayokha.

21 “Anthu amva kubuwula kwanga,
    koma palibe wonditonthoza.
Adani anga onse amva masautso anga;
    iwo akusangalala pa zimene Inu mwachita.
Lifikitseni tsiku limene munalonjeza lija
    kuti iwonso adzakhale ngati ine.

22 “Lolani kuti ntchito zawo zoyipa zifike pamaso panu;
    muwalange
ngati mmene mwandilangira ine
    chifukwa cha machimo anga onse.
Ndikubuwula kwambiri
    ndipo mtima wanga walefuka.”