For some time, I’ve felt that the English-speaking church could be helped by having some Psalms written in rhyme and familiar poetic structure. The first audience for whom the Psalms were written benefited from Hebrew linguistic and literary devices designed to aid memory. Sadly, those devices get lost in translation.

I’m not a musician or even a poet, but I do have a decent command of English, so I thought I’d try to adapt strategic (read “short”) Psalms to make them easier for kids and the rest of us to memorize.

While studying for “The Holy One,” message #2 in The Ologies, I came across Psalm 113 and thought it would be a good one to adapt for inclusion in our intergenerational curriculum.

Here’s my first attempt at a Psalm adapted to English rhyme and meter

Ha le lu yah! Amen!
God's servants sing the song
Ha le lu yah! Amen!
Sing now and from now on

Praise God with all your might
Under the sun's warm light
God, his name for 'er Yahweh
Praise through the constant day

Yahweh rules all nations
Angels are his creations
The stars he rules above
And looks at us with love

He holds the poor who died
He lifts them to his side
Women with empty wombs
Will he give lively homes

Rich Mullins also updated Psalm 113. Here’s his version